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Sri Lanka’s activated carbon, brooms, tyres may be taxed after US GSP ends

ECONOMYENXT – Sri Lanka’s exports of activated carbon, some types of tyres, brooms and brushes may attract higher duty from the US, after the country failed to re-new a Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) for all countries.

Deputy Minister of Economic Affairs Harsha de Silva said most of Sri Lanka’s 2.8 billion US dollars of exports including apparel will be unaffected as they did not get any GSP benefits.

According to US data, Sri Lanka exported 22.2 million US dollars of activated carbon to the US in 2016, which will attract 4.8 percent duty from next year. However industry analysts say top exporters of activated carbon in any case paid tax and did not get any benefit.

Sri Lanka had also exported 19 million Us dollars of bags and packaging of polymer and ethylene which will attract 3.0 percent duty.

Brooms brushes and mops of 8.8 million US dollars were also exported in 2016, which will attract 2.8 percent of duty.

However GSP plus is also not renewed for other countries.

The US is a free trading country with small import duties, which had made in a global economic powerhouse and its people rich with high living standards, compared to protectionist nations with low living standards.

The current President Donald Trump backed by nationalists who use 16 century Mercantilist arguments to exploit customers and have poor understanding of economics and the paths to prosperity has called for higher border taxes.

The non-renewal of the GSP program, however is mostly attributed to the pre-occupation of Congress with other matters, by most analysts.

However it is not clear whether the administration will renew it or will further restrict it, including to countries that voted against the US in a recent UN proposal against Israel. (Colombo/Dec30/2017)





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