In a blow to Indian jewelers, the US has stopped the duty-free status for gold necklaces from India as the product was found to be competitive in US markets.
Earlier, US used to allow duty-free status to certain products from developing countries to help them expand their economies. Other items that have been struck off the duty-free list are passenger tyres from Thailand and wood flooring from Brazil.
After assessing which products should continue to benefit from duty-free treatment under GSP (Generalised System of Preferences), President Barack Obama determined that five products from three beneficiary countries are now sufficiently competitive in the United States.
So, duty-free treatment will be withdrawn for those products, including certain passenger tyres from Thailand, wood flooring from Brazil, and gold rope necklaces from India.
In all, the US will continue to provide duty-free treatment to 110 products from 19 beneficiary countries, whose imports exceed the statutory ceilings by only a small amount.
In 2009, the total value of imports of these 110 products was $613 million. Obama also granted Egypt's request to add frozen beans and frozen mixed vegetables to the list of eligible products.