India mulls import duty cuts to curb inflation

Monday, 31 January 2011 00:01 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Reuters - India will consider cutting import duties on more food products if needed to curb high food inflation gripping Asia’s third-largest economy, Trade Minister Anand Sharma said.

“Yes, when there is a shortage and the inflation is high,” Sharma told Reuters late on Saturday at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, when asked if India would consider cutting more import duties.

“Like where there is a shortage and we don’t produce enough, it is but natural (to cut import duties). Why should we import at such higher prices and then subsidise it for the public distribution system?”

Sharma said he was concerned with high oil prices, which are nearing $100 a barrel, widening India’s nagging trade deficit.