Ludhiana: City exporters, particularly those dealing in garments, have heaved a sigh of relief after the announcements by Union finance minister Nirmala Seetharaman.

It was announced on Saturday that government will introduce a new scheme for remission of duties or taxes on export product (RoDTEP) which will be applicable from January 1, 2020, and Rs 50,000 crore will be earmarked under the same per year.

According to businessmen, with the announcements, the uncertainty over incentives for the garment exporters after scrapping of Merchandise Export from India Scheme (MEIS) is over. Besides the RoDTEP, Seetharaman also announced that MEIS and Rebate of State Levies Scheme (ROSL) will continue till December 31, 2019.

City’s garment manufacturers were worried due to volatile situation in the garment exports business which after showing growth in April and May this year had a steep decline in June and again after showing positive signs in July fell in August. Besides this, there was common fear amongst the exporters fraternity that after existing schemes like MEIS will be withdrawn, there will be no new schemes.

Welcoming the decision, Harish Kairpal, finance secretary of Knitwear Club said, “Decision to start RoDTEP scheme is a great initiative and with this announcement, the uncertainty over the future of garment exports is over. Over the last few years, the majority of incentives available to garment exporters were either withdrawn or reduced, which had not only hit our profit margins, but had also made it tough for us to compete with the exporters of other countries.”

Harish Dua, president of Knitwear and Apparel Exporters’ Organization, said, “There is no doubt that RoDTEP scheme will prove to be beneficial for the exporters, but government must clear that how much money out of Rs 50,000 crore has been set aside in particular for the garment exports. This will help us in getting fair idea about the exact amount of incentive available for garment exporters. Apart from this, the government’s commitment to introduce electronic refund module for faster refund of input tax credits is appreciable step, but it depends on when it is introduced.”

Dua also added, “I think its high time Punjab government and state finance minister Manpreet Badal also introduce a special package for garment exporters which account for major share of exports from state.”

Speaking to TOI, Atul Saggar, general secretary of Apparel Manufacturers Association, Ludhiana, said, “The announcements have been made at a right time as we ar now battling recession, which is likely to remain for the next few months. The decision to increase credit to exporters is a beneficial step, but government needs to make sure that banks and financial institutions make the loan processing more easier for the exporters particularly those from MSME category.”

Published On : 17-09-2019

Source : Times of India

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