'Foreign Trade Policy review by July 1 GST rollout'

The 2nd reconstituted Board of Trade meeting was chaired by Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

The Dollar Business Bureau 

The Commerce Ministry will finish the mid-term review of Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) earlier than expected so that it would coincide with the rollout of Goods and Services Tax (GST) on July 1, said a senior official on Tuesday, while adding that exporters have asked for policy incentives to boost exports. 

“The objective of the meeting was to seek inputs for the review of FTP to coincide with the launch of GST. Exports have made a revival and they need support so that it continues to grow,” Commerce Secretary Rita Teaotia told reporters on the sidelines of Board of Trade meeting. 

The second reconstituted Board of Trade meeting was chaired by Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. Besides, officials from Revenue and other government departments were present to reply to the queries of the industry. 

“Various issues such as related to refunds, zero rating, etc, were explained by the Revenue Department. Some issues about the fitment will be studied by fitment committee,” Teaotia said. 

Replying to a query with regards to the impact of GST on exports, she stated that since they do not have any tax, we do not anticipate any adverse effect of GST on the industry. 

The Commerce secretary said the representatives of industry at the meet have acknowledged that exports have recovered, but also ask for support to further growth in the coming few years. 

Several export promotion councils (EPCs) asked for further support through Merchandise Exports from India (MEIS) scheme, interest subvention scheme and others, under the FTP, she said. 

Talks on market development and market access, along with the need to extend extra support to EPCs in order to develop and explore newer markets were also discussed, she added. 

Teaotia said that the meeting also discussed on several suggestions about measures to facilitate e-commerce. 

“We have taken note of all suggestions carefully and will be factoring in many suggestions for the FTP review,” she said.

The Dollar Business Bureau - Jun 22, 2017 12:00 IST