Mariah Wollweber, 202.547.7800, firstname.lastname@example.org
Steve Mercer, U.S. Wheat Associates, 913-449-4134, email@example.com
Wheat Industry Welcomes New Check on India’s Wheat and Rice Subsidy Scheme
Washington, D.C. (April 6, 2023) —U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) and the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) today praised the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) for submitting a counter-notification on India’s wheat and rice subsidies to the WTO April 6, 2023.
The filing on the WTO website can be seen here.
Like another filing on the same commodities in 2018, this U.S. counter-notification shows India does not report the true level of support it provides to its farmers. Unlike the 2018 counter-notification, five other wheat or rice exporter countries joined the United States in this filing: Australia; Canada; Paraguay; Thailand; and Ukraine.
“We appreciate USTR’s continued efforts to highlight India’s trade-distorting wheat subsidies and its lack of transparency,” said USW President Vince Peterson. “We urge USTR to take all necessary steps to ensure India brings these subsidies into compliance with their WTO commitments.”
India’s wheat subsidies incentivize overproduction and discourage farmers from growing other crops. This has led to massive public stocks of wheat that the Indian government has at times dumped onto international markets. The disruption it causes harms farmers in exporting countries and their customers who benefit from stable markets.
Under its WTO commitments, India may provide subsidies equal to no more than 10% of the total value of crop production. In the years covered in the counter-notification, the United States demonstrates through India’s own data that its price support appears to far exceed that limit.
“U.S. farmers understand the importance of supporting producers, but India’s approach of ignoring trade commitments is the wrong way to do it,” said NAWG CEO Chandler Goule. “More transparency is critical to restoring trust in the rules-based trading system, but even more important is for countries to follow through on their commitments.”
USW and NAWG are committed to working with USTR and other government officials to address these challenges and to ensure that U.S. wheat farmers have a fair chance to compete in the global marketplace.
# # #
NAWG is the primary policy representative in Washington D.C. for wheat growers, working to ensure a better future for America’s growers, the industry and the general public. NAWG works with a team of 20 state wheat grower organizations to benefit the wheat industry at the national level. From their offices on Capitol Hill, NAWG’s staff members are in constant contact with state association representatives, NAWG grower leaders, Members of Congress, Congressional staff members, Administration officials and the public.
The U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) mission is to “develop, maintain, and expand international markets to enhance wheat’s profitability for U.S. wheat producers and its value for their customers.” USW activities in more than 100 countries are made possible through producer checkoff dollars managed by 17 state wheat commissions and cost-share funding provided by USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service. USW maintains 15 offices strategically located around the world to help wheat buyers, millers, bakers, wheat food processors and government officials understand the quality, value and reliability of all six U.S. wheat classes. For more information, visit www.uswheat.org.