The Union Government’s decision to reduce the import duty on Washington apples from 70 percent to 50 percent was against the interests of apple growers of the State. For long, the orchardists of Himachal Pradesh have been demanding to increase the import duty on all types of foreign apples from 70 percent to 100 percent.
Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu in a statement issued here today said that instead of increasing an import duty, the Central Government has reduced the import duty on Washington Apple by 20 percent, which was against the interests of apple growers besides affecting their economy and the economy of the state as well.
The Chief Minister said that he would take up the issue with the Central Government and demanded that the import duty on all types of foreign apples be increased to 100 percent. He appealed to the Central Government to reconsider its decision in view of the interests of the apple growers.
During the 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Prime Minister, Narendra Modi promised to increase the import duty on foreign apples and to blend 5 percent apple concentrate in all types of cold drinks. But the decision of the Union Government to reduce the import duty, the demand for Himachal apples will decrease in the International market, directly affecting the growers.