High-level committee meet to discuss trade facilitation
Other issues include promotion of online platform for trading, easing approval mechanisms through creation of paperless and contact-free approval environment for export and import clearancesThe Dollar Business Bureau
The committee includes Director General of Foreign Trade, Chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes and representatives from Railway Board, Airport Authority of India and shipping, as its members.
Concerned over the country’s export downtrend, top government officials representing various Ministries are meeting on Tuesday to discuss ways to ease the business environment in the country.According to sources, the high-level meeting chaired by Rita Teaotia, Secretary, Ministry of Commerce, is likely to witness deliberations on issues related to fast-track clearances for traders among other issues related to facilitation of trade.Other issues under discussion include promotion of online platform for trading, easing approval mechanisms through creation of paperless and contact-free approval environment for export and import clearances.When asked if the industry bodies are also joining the meet, one of the top sources from a key industry body told The Dollar Business that this is a government-government meeting involving officials from various Ministries like Commerce, Shipping among others. However, we have submitted our representations on behalf of the industry, added the source.It is noteworthy that the PMO last month, constituted a committee to facilitate cross-border trading and expedite procedures related to export import clearances.The committee consisted of Director General of Foreign Trade, Chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes and representatives from Railway Board, Airport Authority of India and shipping, as its members.Through fast-tracking of clearance procedures, the government intends to promote ease of doing business for traders by ensuring them ‘reduction in transaction costs’. “Reduction in transactions cost would certainly help in boosting exports,” Federation of Indian Exporters Organisations (FIEO) reportedly said.Various industry bodies have been pitching for reforms to reduce transaction costs as an immediate relief to the industry.“Execution of GST will put an end to complex taxation practices reducing transaction costs and making the system tax-payer friendly for MSMEs,” the SME Council of the Confederation of Indian Industry had told The Dollar Business.This ‘meeting’ termed as the first such meeting by the Committee after being constituted by the PMO, gains importance in view of the industry concerns over rapidly decreasing export figures.