Working under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, the Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR) is a security gate against unfair trade practices utilized by overseas producers or exporters.
The DGTR investigates unfair trade practices such as dumping, subsidization, and imports that eclipse the prevailing anti-dumping and countervailing tariffs.
Moreover, the DGTR also protects the domestic industry from increasing imports, which would otherwise destabilize the Indian economy.
From DGAD to DGTR
The Directorate General of Anti-Dumping and Allied Duties (DGAD) was established in 1998.
DGAD and the Directorate General of Safeguards (DGS) were merged with the safeguard functions of the Directorate General of Financial Transactions (DGFT) into a single National Authority, the Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR), in 2018.
Functions of DGTR
The mission of the DGTR is to assess complaints from Indian domestic producers who claim to have been injured by unfair trade practices adopted by foreign producers or exporters. DGTR, furthermore, recommends the Government of India imposed anti-dumping duties or equivalent tariffs on such goods.
Also, it deals with dumping and countervailing duties, anti-dumping, and safeguard measures. However, the final decision on the imposition of the duty, as advised by the DGTR, is in the hands of the Ministry of Finance, Government of India.
Procedure of DGTR
- The complaint of a domestic industry begins an inquiry, after which the DGTR initiates the investigation.
- The investigation invites the fair representation of all stakeholders, including local industry, foreign producers, exporters, importers, users, and their associations.
- The DGTR collects relevant evidence from each participant.
- Moreover, the DGTR recommends the imposition of duty only after thoroughly studying facts, statistics, and legal submissions from stakeholders.
- The time limit to wrap up the investigation is 12 months. However, DGTR can extend this period to 18 months.
Recent Major Recommendations of the DGTR
Recently, in December 2021, to protect domestic industries from low-cost imports from China, India slapped anti-dumping duties on five Chinese products for five years.
The Government of India decided to impose tariffs following the recommendation of the Directorate General of Trade Remedies.
The DGTR recommended imposition of anti-dumping duties on the following:
- Some flat-rolled aluminium products
- Sodium hydrosulfite
- Silicone sealant
- HFC component R-32
- Hydrofluorocarbon blends
The DGTR claims that these products were exported at a lower price than their normal cost in Indian markets, resulting in dumping.
Reforms in DGTR
The Directorate has implemented several procedural and procedure enhancements, including:
- Increased use of digital platforms
- Streamlining application formats, annexures, and questionnaires
- Permitting self-certification of trade remedy investigations
Also, the recently developed sampling technique for the fragmented industry would significantly lower compliance costs. Moreover, it will also boost access to trade remedy measures for fragmented industries and MSMEs.
To sum up, the Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR) takes proactive measures to combat unfair economic practices. Anti-dumping policies are put in place to maintain fair trade and level the playing field for domestic manufacturers.
Moreover, several Indian enterprises have profited from the DGTR-recommended charges. Domestic industries were able to grow their production capacity, attract more investment, and generate more jobs.
FAQs on DGTR
Q.1. What is the mission of the DGTR?
The Directorate General of Trade Remedies aims to protect domestic industries from unfair trade practices like dumping.
Q.2. Does the DGTR adhere to WTO guidelines on anti-dumping duties?
In line with the WTO principles, the anti-dumping duties recommended by the Directorate General of Trade Remedies are in effect for five years from the date they are imposed unless cancelled earlier. DGTR also conducts a sunset review to consider an extension for five more years.
Q.3. Who heads DGTR?
A Director-General heads the Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR). Currently, Shri. Anant Swarup is the Director-General of DGTR.
Q.4. DGTR works under which ministry?
The Directorate General of Trade Remedies works under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India.