IDCA urges jewelry trade to pressure feds into maintaining trade agreements

The Indian Diamond and Colorstone Association in an open letter urges the jewelry trade in the U.S. to support trade agreements between India and the U.S. The federal government is considering revoking its Generalized System of Preferences with India. The GSP extends duty-free treatment for certain products entering the U.S. Revoking GSP would add a six percent duty to a “significant portion” of jewelry entering the U.S., IDCA says. The deadline for public comment is Tuesday. The IDCA letter reads:

NEW YORK – US jewelry retailers and consumers could face serious economic hardships if a longstanding trade agreement with India, Brazil and some other trade partners is revoked, jewelry industry trade leaders said today.

The IDCA is urging retailers to contact the United States Trade Representative (USTR) before the September 5, 2006, deadline for comments, and ask it to continue the trade benefits granted to Indian jewelry manufacturers under the GSP (Generalized System of Preferences) program.

“Withdrawing jewelry imports from the GSP program would add a six percent duty to a significant portion of jewelry products purchased by US consumers,” trade experts said. “Consumers already facing rising gold, diamond and oil prices, and feeling the effects of a softening US dollar, may see the retail prices for jewelry increase 15 to 20 percent, with disastrous effects on the retail market.”

Concerned retailers are asked to email the USTR office before the September 5th deadline, urging the US government to maintain the GSP status granted India, Brazil and 11 other trading partners.

Emails should be sent before September 5th to: