CAATSA is the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, which is a United States federal law that imposed sanctions on Iran, North Korea, and Russia passed by the Senate on July 27, 2017.

India's purchase of Russian S-400 was eligible for CAATSA sanctions. However, no sanctions have been applied yet.

There were talks that India would get a waiver, and there was a house of representatives vote approving this some time back.

I haven't found anything after that vote.

What is the status of this waiver? Why is it not progressing?

1 Answer 1


The waiver was inserted into the House version of NDAA 2023 in July 2022. However, after much back and forth, the Senate version passed in December 2022.

AFAICT based on a text search (because it's 1770 pages long) the word CAATSA doesn't appear in the version that became law. The original section number that inserted that amendment/waiver was 1336. That section (number) also doesn't exist in the final version. There is a "Sec. 1260. Enhancing major defense partnership with India" though in it. But it doesn't have the waiver, just encouragement for the US to look for opportunities to sell more stuff to India, etc.

FWTW, there'a 750-page 'explanatory note' how the House-Senate negotiation combined certain things, including e.g. how sec. 1351 from the House bill was combined with sec. 1246 from the Senate one to give the aforementioned sec. 1260. It doesn't explain how the CAATSA waiver as such was dropped though, but there's this mention that a section with number 1336 was dropped though. I have no idea what its subject was different, in this note:

The House bill contained a provision (sec. 1336) that would require the Secretary of Defense, in coordination with the Secretary of State and the Office of the Special Envoy To Monitor and Combat Antisemitism, to report annually on the rise of antisemitism and the role of antisemitism in violent extremist movements. The Senate amendment contained no similar provision. The agreement does not include this provision.

Actually, I do know now. The 'final' version of the House version pushed the original amendment 1336 to number 1351, which had the waiver at letter (d). Presumably that happened when more amendments were added to the House version. And then, the combining exercise dropped that [House-version of] (d) without being too explicit about it. It just said:

Sec. 1260 - Enhancing major defense partnership with India The House bill contained a provision (sec. 1351) that would express the sense of Congress that a strong United States-India defense partnership is critical in order to advance United States interests in the Indo-Pacific region. The Senate amendment contained a similar provision (sec. 1246). The agreement includes the Senate provision with an amendment that would make clarifying changes.

So it's mostly the Senate version with 'clarifying changes', meaning/implying that the House-specific stuff was dropped in that combining.

At best what was left was this [request for the DoD to provide]:

(6) a discussion of opportunities and challenges related to reducing India’s reliance on Russian-built weapons and defense systems.

So, I think the waiver hasn't been officially enacted. But I don't expect the US to sanction India over this either.

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