Published: Wed, December 06, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

'Extend trade policy sops to all exporters'

'Extend trade policy sops to all exporters'

Exports entered the negative terrain after over a year, contracting 1.12 per cent in October, primarily due to the liquidity problem faced by exporters following the GST launch.

However the exporters demanded more measures to improve market access and cost competitiveness.

Mr. Baru said the 2% increase in the Service Exports from India Scheme (SEIS) incentive for services like business, legal, accounting, architectural, engineering, educational, hospital, hotels and restaurants would provide impetus for boosting India's service exports in non-IT areas.

Alok Chaturvedi, Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), while speaking the event, said that the review is an ongoing process.

One key focus will be boosting employment creation in labour-intensive sectors like textiles and leather while addressing exporters' concerns on GST-related issues, sources added. Procedural simplification to replace IEC by PAN; increase in the validity of the scrips from 18 months to 24 months; reintroduction of ARO facility for supply against Advance Authorization/EPCG/EOU;relaxation in export of free of cost samples from 1 per cent to 2 per cent of average exports in preceding 3 years with a ceiling of Rs 2 crore would also mitigate the hardship of the exporters and hassles related to its compliances.

The minister said the Merchandise Exports from India Scheme (MEIS) incentive rate will be raised by 2 per cent across the board for labour intensive/MSME sectors.

This will benefit sectors like, leather, agriculture, carpets, handicrafts and marine products.

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In April 201, the government had announced several incentives in the five-year FTP for exporters and units in the special economic zones (EPZs) to almost double India's exports of goods and services to $900 billion by 2020.

"Mid-term review of the Foreign Trade Policy 2015-20 contains several positive features".

The five-year FTP was announced on April 1, 2015, and set an ambitious target of India's goods and services exports touching Dollars 900 billion by 2020.

Faced with stagnating export growth, India has made a decision to offer more incentives to exports from labour-intensive and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) dominated sectors even as it launched initiatives like the use of trade analytics to identify new markets for its products.

Under the MEIS scheme available to exporters, identified sectors are given duty exemption scrips, which are fixed at a certain percentage of the total value of their exports.

Exporters' body FIEO suggested that government should gradually extend the MEIS to other sectors of exports since they are also facing numerous challenges in exports.

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