New FTP To Be Unveiled Tomorrow; Sops For Exporters Likely

Tuesday, 31 March 2015, 11:25 Hrs
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NEW DELHI: The new Foreign Trade Policy, scheduled to be unveiled, will focus on promoting service exports and giving fillip to the manufacturing sector as part of the government's 'Make in India' campaign.

The FTP, which is being announced at a time when India's exports are declining, may extend interest subsidy scheme and other incentives for labour intensive sectors such as leather and handicrafts.

Besides services sector, it would focus on standards and branding of products and also take care of World Trade Organisations's rule and free trade agreements of India.

"The new FTP would focus on enhancing services exports, standards and branding of products to promote exports of specific products in specific geographies. The policy may also focus on the current schemes which are not in compliance with the WTO norms," an official said.

The services sector contributes about 55 percent to the country's gross domestic product. During April-October period, services exports were worth USD 113.28 billion.

The new FTP (2015-2020) would have a total of nine chapters including a separate one on services exports.

The policy is likely to announce steps to improve ease of doing business in the country and Digital India initiatives.

As part of ease of doing business, the commerce ministry has reduced paper work for both exports and imports. It has also permitted online submission of documents to take Import-Export Code number, which is must for a trader.

All exports and imports related activities are governed by the FTP. It mainly aims at enhancing the country's exports and use trade expansion as an effective instrument of economic growth and employment generation.

The government is struggling to boost merchandise exports as India's outbound shipments in the last three years have been hovering at around USD 300 billion.

India's exports in 2013-14 fall short of the USD 325 billion target and managed to reach USD 312.35 billion. The country's exports stood at USD 300.4 billion in 2012-13 and USD 307 billion in 2011-12.

Falling for the straight third month, India's exports declined steeply by over 15 per cent to USD 21.54 billion in February.

The official also said that this year, the ministry is expected to fix a long term target for exports instead of an yearly one.

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Source: PTI
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