India Challenges WTO Shrimp Ruling


SeafoodSource staff

Published on
May 6, 2008

India is challenging a World Trade Organization ruling that international trade law allows antidumping penalties other than tariffs to be enacted on a country.

In late February, a WTO panel ruled that the U.S. practice of collecting cash deposits in the form of bonds from Indian and Thai shrimp exporters subject to tariffs violates international trade law. U.S. Customs and Border Protection enacted the practice in 2004 to curb tariff evasion.

In an effort to prevent the United States from implementing a penalty similar to its bond directive, India is arguing that any antidumping penalty other than a tariff is illegal, an unnamed Indian trade official told the Economic Times of India.

"We want to ensure that similar duties are not imposed in the future on the country's exports," the official said. "We want to fight out the case to the end."

Also in late February, the WTO panel ruled that the U.S. practice of "zeroing" is illegal, agreeing with Thai shrimp exporters that the U.S. Department of Commerce artificially inflated Thai shrimp tariffs using the controversial methodology. The decisions confirmed preliminary rulings made last October.

India and Thailand are two of the six Asian and Latin American countries the DOC hit with shrimp tariffs in early 2005 after the Southern Shrimp Alliance, an eight-state group of shrimpers and processors, filed an antidumping petition in late 2003.

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