TPM was founded in 1999 at a time when the practice of trade remedies in India was in its infancy and there were only a handful of firms in the field. While other firms added this portfolio in their existing portfolios, TPM dealt exclusively in cases in the domain of trade remedies.
Question: Kindly tell us about your journey since the inception of the company?
Answer: TPM began its journey with a staff of merely 2 professionals. Today, it has a team of more than 40 professionals including Cost Accountants, Chartered Accountants, Company Secretaries, Lawyers, Engineers and M.B.As.
From the beginning, TPM was focused on providing consultancy in the field of trade remedies. TPM helps domestic producers battling against cheap and unfair imports into India to avail the necessary protection under the umbrella of WTO Agreements. TPM has also assisted the domestic producers in other countries to avail similar measures in their respective countries.
Besides assisting domestic producers in India and other countries, TPM also assists exporters and importers facing trade remedial investigations in India or other countries. TPM has assisted Indian exporters facing investigations in a number of jurisdictions such as USA, European Union, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, GCC and Indonesia.
TPM has an unenviable experience of dealing in the field, of more than 700 cases. Its unique experience in the field sets it apart from other firms.
Question: What are the different products and services offered by your company, setting you apart from your competitors?
Answer: TPM provides end to end services in trade remedies and related matters. TPM has experience of providing trade remedial services with respect to a wide array of products ranging from chemicals, petrochemicals, machinery, drugs, electrical and electronics goods, natural and manmade fibres, fabrics, cement and other construction materials, tyres, fertilizers, paper, steel, copper, solar cells and modules, etc. Its extensive experience in successfully handling cases relating to aforesaid products in the field of trade remedies sets it apart from other firms.
While the firm is primarily dedicated to trade remedies, it also provides services in the field of trade policy, non-tariff barriers, competition law, trade compliance, monitoring and EXIM analysis. It also represents industries before the Government in matters involving customs policy.
Question: Kindly brief us about the proactive founder/CEO of the company and his/her contribution towards company and Industry.
Answer: The firm was founded by Mr. A. K. Gupta, who is an ex-government official. Mr. Gupta has been serving the industry for over twenty years and has been involved in the field since the law was at a nascent stage in India. Before setting up TPM, he was working as Deputy Director in the Directorate General of Anti-Dumping and Allied Duties. As a government official, he was involved in drafting of questionnaires and amendments and represented Government in various jurisdictions.
Thereafter, he resigned from the Government to set up his own practice and founded TPM. Over the period, Mr. Gupta has built his name as an eminent practitioner in the field. With the highest number of cases to his name, Mr. Gupta is unarguably an icon in the field of trade remedies. With his unparalleled passion and commitment to his work, he has built lasting relationships with his clients.
Question: Mention some of the awards, achievements, recognition’s and clients’ feedback that you feel are notable and valuable for the company.
Answer: TPM Consultants has been recognized by some of the top business and professional magazines in India.
- TPM was listed amongst the “Top 10 Most Valuable Law Firms in 2017” by the Insights Success.
- It was recognized amongst the “25 Fast Growing Legal Consultant Companies in India” by the CEO Magazine
- Business Connect has recognized TPM amongst the “Consultants of the Year 2019”
- It has been acclaimed as the “10 Admired Companies To Watch in 2019” by the CEO Story
TPM prides itself in the recognitions received by it as well as its achievements over the period. Some notable achievements of TPM include
- In 1999, TPM was founded as the first firm dealing exclusively in the area of trade remedies
- TPM has been serving the top manufacturing industries in India over the last two decades.
- Over the last twenty years, TPM has established itself as the highest ranked firm in the field
- TPM is empaneled on the DGTR Panel of Experts.
- TPM has authored a book published by Lexis Nexis titled “A Handbook of Trade Remedial Measures – An Indian Perspective”
- TPM represented an Indian exporter in a sunset review investigation in Brazil. Through TPM’s diligent efforts, no duty was levied against the exporter
- The TPM team accomplished the almost impossible task of filing the sampling questionnaire for 278 companies in a span of 5 days
- TPM represented the domestic industry in Egypt in an anti-dumping investigation against imports of dumped goods from USA
- As the top-most firm in the field of trade remedies, it has been a pioneer in the field.
- In 2015, TPM represented the Indian industry in the first anti-subsidy investigation conducted in India
- TPM represented the Indian industry in the first finding issued in an anti-circumvention investigation of anti-dumping duties
- TPM is representing the Indian industry in the first bilateral safeguard investigation under a Free Trade Agreement
- TPM is also representing the Indian industry in the first ever safeguard investigation for imposition of quantitative restrictions in India
Question: Kindly share your point of view on the current scenario, major challenges, and opportunities as you faced.
Answer: The global trade scenario is undergoing a sea change at present. While the countries had been opening up their economies earlier, some countries have adopted a more protectionist policy recently. This has also led to an increase in trade remedial investigations and other tariff and non-tariff barriers.
However, some of the major issues being faced in such measures in India are low awareness amongst the industries regarding trade remedial measures and extensive data required for filing applications. Often, the domestic producers are unable to come forward to participate due to the detailed confidential data required to be filed.
Further, the exporters have also started resorting to the circumvention of anti-dumping duties. For instance, if duties are imported against China, the Chinese exporters may export the product after further processing, to avoid the levy. Further, the products may also be exported through other countries to avoid the levy of duty.
Question: Brief us about the major challenges TPM has faced.
Answer: At its nascent stage, the biggest challenge faced by TPM was the low awareness in the country regarding trade remedial measures. However, through concerted efforts of TPM, industry associations and the Government through multiple conferences and seminars organized across India, the domestic producers have become aware of the remedies available to them. This has helped the Indian producers to seek the necessary protection against cheap and unfair imports into the country.
Some of the major challenges faced in the field of trade remedies are the difficulties in collating data for filing applications. Any trade remedial investigation requires detailed costing and pricing information to be submitted by participating producers and exporters. The process of collecting and processing the data can be even more difficult in the case of small and medium sized enterprises that do not maintain detailed costing records. It is also difficult to collect data in case of scattered industries involving a large number of companies, such as in case of vitrified tiles or welded pipes and tubes, silk yarn, fishnets, etc. The producers are often also reluctant to share the confidential data. Streamlining the data requirements as per the size of each industry would go a long way towards resolving the issue.
Question: What are the major contributing factors behind your company’s success?
Answer: The single most important factor contributing to TPM’s success is the zeal to retain its position at the top of the ladder and the team’s dedication and passion towards achieving this avowed goal through its work. TPM believes in providing services to the utmost satisfaction to the clients and improving its techniques and strategies based on the lessons learnt from every case. The efforts and commitments displayed by each member of the team has borne fruit in the form of long-lasting relationships with our clients. The team also keeps updating itself of new developments in the domain of trade remedies and exploring opportunities in other related areas.
Question: How do you motivate creativity and innovation in the workspace while maintaining a healthy work environment?
Answer: TPM provides inhouse training to the new members joining the firm. Further, to encourage innovation, the team discusses and deliberates on key issues of each case and new developments. The colleagues share their experiences in each case handled by them, which may help in other investigations.
TPM also encourages individual team members to take responsibility for their cases, which allows them to develop and grow.
Question: Share your experience and brief us about the tactics and strategies to build long term customer relationship.
Answer: TPM team is fully equipped to and commitment towards ensuring the success of each case. This unique quality helps it to build lasting relationships with its clients. TPM offers solutions-based approach and helps the clients in selecting solutions that best suit their needs. TPM handholds the clients from the beginning of the process till the end, that is, from the stage of collection and preparation of data, till the fruitful result of the investigation. TPM also represents the clients in any litigation relating to the investigation. TPM keeps the clients updated on regular basis the progress of the case and informs them about the challenges in a case and all alternative solutions. The team works to ensure utmost client satisfaction, with due regard to professional ethics and duties. TPM prides itself in having gained the clients’ trust through its honesty, sincerity, un-paralleled domain knowledge and hard-work, and its ability to build long term customer relationships.
Question:How do you see the company and the industry in the future ahead?
Answer: TPM has already established itself as the top-most firm in the field of trade remedies. However, it believes that there is still a need for such measures to reach every sector of the Indian manufacturing industry. For this, there is a need for generating greater awareness amongst the domestic producers. TPM also has its eyes set on carving out a name for itself on the global map in the field of trade remedies. For this purpose, TPM intends to develop its practice in other countries as well. It is working towards emerging as one of the global leaders in the field of trade remedies.
Additionally, TPM is also focused on achieving the same success in other related fields such as that of non-tariff barriers, competition law and EXIM monitoring and analysis. It believes that expanding and developing its basket of services would enable it to provide comprehensive solutions to its clients. TPM’s vision is to emerge as a leading complete solutions provider in the field of trade and competition law in India and globally, over the next decade.