The Commerce and Industry Minister, representatives of states and the industry is scheduled to meet on January 8 here to discuss ways to promote India’s exports, which are in the negative zone since December 2014.
The meeting is scheduled as part of the first meeting of the Council for Trade Development and Promotion, chaired by Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
The council was formed last year with an aim to involve states in boosting the trade.
The Centre and state governments would deliberate on the relevant infrastructure to promote trade and identify impediments that are affecting exports, an official said.
FIEO, which will participate in the meet, said that it will raise issues related to tax refund in states.
“Large amount of refund is pending with states. Filing of tax is online but refund is not online. These things impact exports,” Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) Director General Ajay Sahai said.
He said other issues, which would come up include demand for inclusion of certain taxes like entry tax and electricity tax in the GST.
“We also want states to do handholding to small players in getting Geographical Indications and patents so that they get more realisation,” he added.
India’s exports continued to be in negative zone for the 12th straight month in November. It declined by 24.4 per cent to USD 20.01 billion in November on account of global demand slowdown and falling oil prices.
During April-November this fiscal, the exports contracted by 18.46 per cent year-on-year to USD 174.3 billion.
The council provides a platform to state governments and UTs for articulating their perspective on trade policy to help them develop and pursue export strategies in line with national foreign trade policy.
Besides, it would help the Centre apprise states and UTs about international developments affecting India’s trade potential and opportunities and prepare them to deal with evolving situation.
The other members of the council include Chairman Railway Board, Niti Aayog Secretary and CEO, Director General of Foreign Trade, Director General of FIEO, representatives of CII and FICCI and concerned Joint Secretary of Department of Commerce.