India No More A Developing Nation, Says Donald Trump; But Is It The Case?

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Pennsylvania (US): United States President Donald Trump on Tuesday said India and China are no longer ‘developing countries’ and therefore they should not be allowed by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to enjoy the special economic privileges that comes with the tag.

This is the second time that Trump has voiced his disagreement with the WTO that both India and China, two of the world’s fastest-growing economies, should be still categorised as developing nations.

Early in July, he had asked the trade body to define how it categorises developing nation status. His contention was that the special status was putting America to a disadvantage in global trade.

The Trump administration has been particularly harsh to the two Asian giants and has been locked in a bitter tariff war following the imposition of heavy duties on Indian and Chinese goods entering the US market.

Addressing a gathering at Pennsylvania, the US President tried to justify the tariff on Indian goods by once again raking up its developing nation status.

So is India an ‘economy in transition’ (just below the developed nation tag)? 

1. The US President’s self-assessed assumption might instill a sense of pride among the common Indian citizens, but India’s socio-economic indicators reflect something else.

2. As per a report of Washington-based World Bank in 2017, India ranks below 100 in the list of nations in human development index. In the health performance index report, the neonatal mortality rate in states such as Odisha is no better than Sierra Leone, one of the poorest African nation.

3. The World Bank Report says the per capita national income in India was $1,800 when the per capita income in Singapore stood at $54,530 and $28,380 in South Korea. In neighbouring China, the per capita income stands at $8,690.

4. India has over 21 per cent of its population still living in acute poverty, with people earning no more than Rs 75 a day for a living. In comparison, the poverty rate in China has come down to seven per cent.

5. Over 41 per cent of India’s workforce continues to depend on Agriculture, while China, South Korea, Singapore and the US had 16.4 per cent, 4.8 per cent, 0.1 per cent and 1.6 per cent such population.

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