Council for Trade Development and Promotion was constituted by Government of India in 2015 in order to ensure a continuous dialogue with State Governments and UTs on measures for providing an International trade enabling environment in the States and to create a framework for making the States active partners in boosting India’s exports; with Union Commerce & Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman as its Chairperson.
The Council is devising means to fund states’ infrastructure requirements to boost export trade and has proposed Trade Infrastructure for Export Scheme (TIES). The export infrastructure scheme will help states to develop their own export strategy in alignment with the National Foreign Trade Policy. It will also enhance states co-operation with Central agencies to set up common facilities for testing, certification, trace-back, packaging and labeling. The Union Government also has decided to launch Logistics Performance Index (LPI) to rank states on steps taken to facilitate trade and improve logistics.
The Council held two meeting on the 5th & the 8th of January, 2017 in New Delhi wherein Consultations were held for developing a Framework for making States Active partners in boosting India’s exports and Making States Active partners to boost India’s exports.
State Governments made suggestions under three broad parameters including strengthening of infrastructure, benefits to exporters and restoring the facility of ASIDE (Assistance to States for Infrastructure Development of Exports) withdrawn in 2015. TIES may substitute ASIDE.
The Commerce & Industry Minister exhorted the Members of the Council to jointly address impediments in trade and the infrastructure gaps which adversely affect India’s exports and exhorted the States to diversify India’s exports basket by enabling more sectors and breaching new markets so as to reduce the impact of global economic slowdown on Indian exports.
She mentioned that as can be seen on the Indian trade portal, a 100-150 SPS notifications and a similar number of TBT notifications are being issued by WTO member countries each month. Around 50% to 60% of these measures have the potential to impact our trade. Three sector specific needs can broadly be categorised into interventions required for agricultural & marine products, for forest produce and for industrial products.
The Minister drew the attention of States towards promoting Services Exports where we have a substantial Trade surplus. She mentioned that we need to diversify our export basket on services, beyond IT and ITeS, to encompass yoga, health services, tourism and education in other services.
The Heads of the Apex trade bodies FIEO, FICCI, ASSOCHAM and CII gave their views and suggestions for improving exports amidst the challenging world economic scenario.
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