Port Wings News Network:
To capitalize on the opportunity emanating from the tariff war, the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) in association with Department of Commerce, Govt of India organised a stakeholders’ consultation to augment India’s exports to US and China.
FIEO highlighted that tariff war has opened huge opportunity for deeper penetration and expansion in US and China. India can quickly add US$ 10-12 Bn to its exports, if competitiveness is maintained and capacities are created quickly to match large demands coming from these markets.
Mr Sharad Kumar Saraf, President, FIEO said that the identification of specified tariff lines in US and China by Department of Commerce has resulted in focussed attention by exporters to these products which has been supplemented by proactive intervention by Indian Embassy in China and US who are working hard to link Indian exporters with foreign buyers.
Mr Saraf said that China has been able to manage its currency, which deprecated by about 9% since the onset of tariff war, blunting 25% tariff disadvantage by about 11-12%. Moreover, appreciation of Rupee by about 4-5 %, further eroded the advantage for Indian exporters.
FIEO said that how quickly we can add to capacity will determine our success to get best out of tariff war. Dr Ajay Sahai, DG & CEO, FIEO suggested that excess capacity in Special Economic Zones (SEZs) may be permitted to provide plug and play facility to grab the opportunity provided by tariff war as Industry may not invest to create permanent facility to increase production as duration and magnitude of additional tariff itself is uncertain. Moreover, industry feels that with the creation of additional capacity, it may breach the threshold of MSME depriving it of various fiscal benefits.
Stakeholders also raised various issues affecting competitiveness covering logistics, infrastructure inadequacies, transaction cost, availability and cost of credit etc.
Mr Piyush Goyal, Commerce & Industry Minister said that India is destined to be a US$ 5 Trillion and exports have to rise to reach US$ 1 Trillion. He added that Government will provide complete facilitation to exporters and manufacturers but days of subsidies are getting over. Mr Goyal assured the industry that while MEIS will be withdrawn but it will be replaced by WTO compatible RoSCTL scheme, which is already operational for apparel and made ups. He urged the industry to collect the data to get rebate of all indirect taxes and cess through RoSCTL including Electricity, Coal cess and royalty paid on mining etc.
The Minister said that Government is reviewing all existing FTAs so as to assess their impact on exports as well as manufacturing. Moreover, further new negotiations will keep industry and consumer interest at the top of the agenda. Mr Goyal asked the industry to move up the value chain to boost exports. He assured that the concerns of the industry with regard to the cost of credit and availability of credit is being deliberated with RBI and Banks so as to address them. He urged the industry to work together with Government so as to raise India’s share in global exports from less than 2% to 5%.