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Non Tariff Measures

Non Tariff Measures (NTMs) are all measures other than normal tariffs namely trade related procedures, regulations, standards, licencing systems and even trade defense measures such as anti-dumping duties etc which have the effect of restricting trade between nations. Some of these measures could be justified under the provisions or the exceptions provided under the various multilateral agreements governing international trade. On the other hand,  certain non tariff measures which cannot be justified under any of these legal provisions are normally termed as non tariff barriers (NTBs).

With the lowering of tariffs across the globe, NTMs have come into prominence with Members using these measures to erect entry barriers for goods and services. It is therefore, not surprising that the developed countries with relatively lower tariffs are the more prolific users of NTMs / NTBs especially to keep out developing country exports.

 The details of some of the major NTMs that are maintained against Indian exports are as under: 

Country

Item

Details of NTM

United States

Marine products

Increased inspections under the Bio-Terrorism Act, Customs Bond requirement, Mandatory labeling discriminating “farm raised” and “wild” with punitive fines and non-recognition of EIC certification.

United States

Paper products

Non scientific quarantine restrictions, customs surcharges, eco labeling stipulations and food safety/ health standards exist on paper products exports.

United States

Tobacco

A TRQ regime restricts imports.

United States

Food products

Detailed labeling requirements are stipulated with extensive product and content description.

Argentina

Processed Marine Products, Matches, Insecticides, Fungicides, Plastics, Rubber, Leather, Wood & Paper Products, Textiles & Clothing, Headgear, Footwear, Articles Of Iron & Steel, Mechanical & Electrical Machinery, two wheelers, optical instruments, furniture, toys, miscellaneous manufactured articles

A new regulation (57 &58/2007 dated 24.08.2007) wherein minimum import price has been established for specified product imports from India and some other countries. Under this the Argentine Customs authorities can ask for validation of  Indian customs invoice with a full set of original documents if they suspect that the invoiced value is less than the minimum import price established.

Argentina

Pharmaceuticals

There is delay in registration leading to non-viability of exports.

Australia

Mangoes

Australia maintains ban on the pretext of  the presence of fruit flies and stone weevils.

Armenia

Agro chemicals and pharmaceuticals

Armenia stipulates registration requirements and mandates permission for imports and exports

Bangladesh

Poultry products

Bangladesh continues to ban imports despite India gaining the avian influenza free status.

Brazil

Pharmaceuticals

Procedural delays occur in the clearances, inspections and registration by the Brazilian Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA)

Canada

Paper products

Non scientific quarantine restrictions, customs surcharges, eco labeling stipulations and food safety/ health standards exist on paper product exports.

Chile

 Wheat, wheat flour and sugar

A complex price band system wherein a minimum import price (well above the international price and domestic prices) is stipulated. On account of a WTO dispute decision, this band would be lowered by 2% every year from 2008 to 2014 after which a Presidential review would be undertaken.

China

Agricultural products

Opacity of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures and delays in giving clearances

Colombia

Pharmaceuticals

The registration by Colombian Drugs  Control and Certification  takes 11 to 12 months, inspections are undertaken for environmental compliance and a 10% price preference is granted  for  French pharmaceutical companies under a bilateral agreement.

European Communities

Bovine meat

Standards are more stringent than OIE (World Organization for Animal Health) Terrestrial  Animal Health Code,  a ban is maintained on account of  Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) and prolonged delay in upgradation of India’s status to GBR1 (No risk of BSE)

European Communities

Marine products

Rejection and subsequent destruction of consignments with chloramphenicol / nitrofuran residues, rejections in Italy and France due to presence of  Vibrio Parahaemolyticus without judging the virulence factors, rejection due to alleged presence of  bacterial inhibitors/ anti-biotic residues without any confirmatory tests.

European Communities

Chemicals

The Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals (REACH) legislation increases cost of compliance by € 85,000 to € 325,000 per chemical.

European Communities

Engineering and Electronics

The stipulation of CE (originally known by the French term Conformité Européenne) marking to indicate conformity with the essential health and safety requirements increases cost for small and medium enterprises.

Japan

Footwear

The tariff rate quota (TRQ) restricts imports to the quantum of the quota.

Korea

Chemicals, pharmaceuticals, computer and medical equipment

Certification requirements (including prior approval) add on to the cost of exports.

New Zealand

Paper products

Non scientific quarantine restrictions, customs surcharges, eco labeling stipulations and food safety/ health standards exist on paper products exports.

Norway

Marine products

The pathogen analysis is carried out by the NMKL method which is not accepted internationally.

Russia

Meat products

Standards for bovine meat are more stringent than the OIE  Terrestrial Animal Health Code, EIC Conformity certificates are not recognized and Certification with respect to swine fever and FMD are insisted upon for poultry exports which are not relevant..

Ukraine

Bovine meat, coffee, tea, spices, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, plastics, leather products, textiles & clothing

A compulsory certification  with the option of either (a) certificate of acceptance of foreign certification by Derzh Standard or (b) Conformance certificate by Ukrainian Agency.  Though ISO 9000 Standards are adopted by Derzh Standard, foreign certification recognition exists only to the extent of international treaty obligations of Ukraine.

Uzbekistan

All products

Cumbersome procedure for registration and certification, a custom processing fee @ 0.7% of value and lengthy procedure for conversion of hard currency as well as profit repatriation.

 

With a view to strengthening its  information base on NTMs/ NTBs, the Department of Commerce has attempted to put in place a database of NTMs/ NTBs imposed by trading partners on its exports.

 We would welcome inputs from the trade and industry, apex chambers of commerce, export promotion councils, trade analysts, researchers etc on specific NTMs/ NTBs imposed against Indian exports with a view to expanding this database.

 

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