Foreign trade policy to be announced today

Amiti Sen New Delhi | Updated on January 23, 2018

​The Government will spell out measures to boost manufacturing and services exports in the five-year Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) to be announced this evening.

The Commerce and Industries Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, is expected to come up with schemes that would promote exports of items, many from labour-intensive sectors such as textiles, leather and handicrafts, to key buyers such as the EU and the US. Potential markets in Africa, Latin America and Eastern Europe will also be targetted.

The policy will be announced for the period 2015-20.

The policy, being expected by the industry since last August, is being announced at a time when exports from India are under pressure. Exports in the last three months have declined due to contraction in global demand and the target of $320 billion for fiscal 2014-15 seems out of reach.

“We want continuity of all incentive schemes, including focus product, focus market and market-linked focus product (chapter-3 schemes) and a broadening of its coverage. Infrastructural bottlenecks are making exports to prominent trade markets uncompetitive. Incentives should also be extended to export to trading partners like USA,” industry body CII said in a statement.

Services sector

The services sector is also all set to get a boost. The popular 'Served from India’ scheme (SFIS) for services exporters is likely to see a number of changes. The import duty exemption scrips (valued at 10 per cent of foreign exchange earned) given to service exporters as an incentive will be made tradeable as several sectors that do not import cannot use them.

Incentive rates may be increased for thrust sectors like education, health and tourism while foreign services companies in India may be denied the benefit. ​

Published on April 01, 2015

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