A U.S. International Trade Commission report reveals that Indian tariff and non-tariff measures are a serious impediment to U.S. agricultural exports. The report notes U.S. agriculture exports to India are minimal, with India receiving less than 0.5% of U.S. agricultural exports in 2008. This is despite India's rapidly growing middle class and 1.2 billion potential consumers of U.S. products.
Senator Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, says it is time for improved access for U.S. agricultural products to the Indian market. Grassley points out that the report makes it clear that India imposes a lot of barriers to imports of U.S. agricultural products. The problems pointed out by the Senator include that the United States can't export corn to India in any large volumes because of high tariffs; and there's an effective ban on imports of agricultural biotech products with burdensome licensing procedures.
Other problems include excessive sanitary and phytosanitary standards, non-transparent customs procedures, burdensome licensing procedures, an inefficient marketing and distribution system, and ineffective patent protections for genetically modified seeds.