Sajad Gani Lone, president of the Jammu and Kashmir Peoples’ Conference (JKPC), voiced extreme worry on the recent lowering of the customs tariff on apple imports into India on September 12.
He said in a statement that this choice would be terrible for apple producers, especially those in the Kashmir Valley, who have been battling difficulties for the previous three decades.
The reduction in apple customs duties will have a significant negative impact on apple farmers. For the last thirty years, the valley’s horticulturists have faced hardship. For apple farmers in Kashmir and the rest of the nation, allowing unfettered admission into the Indian market would be disastrous, he said in the statement.
He continued by saying that when one considers that the Indian market, already devoid of subsidies or assistance for its local growers, is now opening its doors to customs duty-free imports from a country that provides significant subsidies to its own apple industry, the seriousness of the situation becomes apparent.
“I hope the government is aware that American apple farmers get significant government subsidies. It is estimated to be more than 25%. In India, apple farmers have never seen any direct government help or subsidies. Therefore, the government permits duty-free imports from a nation that offers subsidies into a market that offers neither subsidies nor aid to its own producers,” he continued.
The PC President ardently hoped that the government would reconsider its choice and reintroduce customs fees. He said, “Hope the decision is changed and custom duties are levied again.”