US raises concerns on India’s ICT import rules

Efforts are focused on streamlining procurement and enhancing intellectual property rights.

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The United States has intensified its dialogue with India over concerns regarding import restrictions on information and communications technology (ICT) products, such as laptops and tablets. Specifically, the US is troubled by the perceived lack of transparency and predictability in India’s application of quantitative restrictions, which has hindered access to the Indian market for American exporters. These concerns are being addressed through bilateral discussions, including the Trade Policy Forum (TPF), as well as multilateral engagements at the World Trade Organization (WTO), underscoring the importance of fair and transparent trade practices between the two nations.

Issues related to government procurement practices and intellectual property rights (IPR) have been highlighted in the ongoing dialogue between the US and India. Of particular concern are the variations in procurement policies among different ministries within the Central Government of India, leading to inconsistencies and challenges for US companies. Additionally, efforts are being made to address IPR challenges faced by American firms operating in India, with the aim of enhancing protection and enforcement mechanisms to create a more conducive environment for innovation and investment.

Market access and fair competition remain focal points in the discussions between the US and India. The US has expressed unease about what it perceives as an ‘unlevel’ playing field in India’s insurance market, as well as policies that favour domestic suppliers over foreign counterparts in electronic payment services. Furthermore, the US is advocating for fair competition in telecom services, urging India to adopt policies that promote market access for foreign service providers, particularly through an ‘open skies’ satellite policy.