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Commerce Minister highlights initiatives of Export Development Fund to boost exports

The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Piyush Goyal, has informed the Parliament that India’s overall exports (merchandise and services) has increased from USD 498.63 billion in 2017-18 to USD 538.07 billion in 2018-19, registering a positive growth of 7.91% as compared to the previous year. India’s exports have also increased from USD 262.14 billion in 2018-19 (Apr-Sept) to USD 266.63 billion in 2019-20 (Apr-Sept), showing a positive growth of 1.71% during current year.
 
There exists Export Development Fund (EDF) in Export-Import Bank of India under the provisions of the Export-Import Bank of India Act, 1981.
 
Government has taken following steps to increase exports and thereby earn foreign exchange for the Country:
I. A new Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) 2015-20 was launched on 1st April 2015. The policy, rationalised the earlier export promotion schemes and introduced two new schemes, namely Merchandise Exports from India Scheme (MEIS) for improving export of goods and Services Exports from India Scheme (SEIS) for increasing exports of services. Duty credit scrips issued under these schemes are fully transferable.
ii. The Mid-term Review of the FTP 2015-20 was undertaken on 5th December, 2017. Incentive rates for labour intensive/MSME sectors were increased by 2% with a financial implication of Rs 8,450 crore per year.
iii. A new Logistics Division was created in the Department of Commerce to coordinate integrated development of the logistics sector. India’s rank in World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index moved up from 54 in 2014 to 44 in 2018.
iv. Interest Equalization Scheme on pre and post shipment rupee export credit was introduced from 1.4.2015 providing interest equalization at 3% for labour intensive/ MSME sectors. The rate was increased to 5% for MSME sectors with effect from 2.11.2018 and merchant exporters were covered under the scheme with effect from 2.1.2019.
v. Various measures for improving Ease of Doing Business were taken. India’s rank in World Bank Ease of 
Doing Business ranking improved from 142 in 2014 to 63 in 2019 with the rank in trading across borders moving up from 122 to 80.
vi. A new scheme -Trade Infrastructure for Export Scheme (TIES) – was launched with effect from 1st April 2017 to address the export infrastructure gaps in the Country.
vii. A comprehensive Agriculture Export Policy was launched on 6th December, 2018 with an aim to double farmers’ income by 2022 and provides an impetus to agricultural exports.
viii. Transport and Marketing Assistance (TMA) scheme has been launched for mitigating disadvantage of higher cost of transportation for export of specified agriculture products.  
ix. A scheme for Rebate of State and Central Taxes and Levies (RoSCTL) covering export of garments and made-ups was notified on 7.3.2019 providing refund of duties/taxes at higher rates.

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