Indian prime minister Narendra Modi has been hailed as an economic liberalizer, having sharply criticized rising U.S. protectionism under the Trump administration. Yet Modi too has embarked on measures to protect and support manufacturing jobs in India. The latest Indian budget raised import duties on more than 40 items, ranging from auto parts and toys to candles and furniture, in order to protect uncompetitive small businesses and create jobs in labor-intensive industries. In a new paper, Cato scholar Swaminathan S. Anklesaria Aiyar raises concerns that the new protectionism will get entrenched and reverse the major gains India has made since economic reforms began in 1991.
- “India’s New Protectionism Threatens Gains from Economic Reform,” by Swaminathan S. Anklesaria Aiyar