In an initiative that will make it easier for exporters to claim incentives, the Centre has decided to extend the market coverage under the Merchandise Export from India Scheme (MEIS) to all countries.

This means that the notified benefits for exports of the identified 2787 categories of items (tariff lines) will be provided for shipping to all countries and not specific ones. “Henceforth, landing certificates shall not be required under MEIS with effect from May 4, 2016,” an official release said.

Accordingly, revenue foregone under the scheme has been revised from ₹21,000 crore per annum to ₹22,000 crore per annum. “This step has been taken as part of ease of doing business and reduction of transaction cost of the exporters,” the release added.

The MEIS was introduced in the Foreign Trade Policy 2015-20 on April 1, 2015, to incentivise export of goods manufactured in India. At the time of introduction of MEIS on April 1, 2015, the scheme covered 4914 tariff lines at eight-digit level. Countries were grouped into three market categories for grant of incentives. As on date, 5012 tariff lines are eligible for rewards under MEIS.

Under the scheme, the government provides duty benefits at 2 per cent, 3 per cent and 5 per cent depending upon the product and country.