Export-Import Policy of Last Five Years

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1. Analyse the Export-Import Policy of last five years with special reference to development of Special Economic Zones. 2. The year 2009 is witnessing one of the most severe global recessions in the post-war period. Countries across the world have been affected in varying degrees and all major economic indicators of industrial production, trade, capital flows, unemployment, per capita investment and consumption have taken a hit. The WTO estimates project a grim forecast that global trade is likely to decline by 9% in volume terms and the IMF estimates project a decline of over 11%. The recessionary trend has huge social implications. The World Bank estimate suggests that 53 million more people would fall into the poverty net this year and over a billion people would go chronically hungry. Though India has not been affected to the same extent as other economies of the world, yet our exports have suffered a decline in the last 10 months due to a contraction in demand in the traditional markets of our exports. The protectionist measures being adopted by some of these countries have aggravated the problem. After four clear quarters of recession there is some sign of a turnaround and the emergence of ‘green shoots’, though I would be hesitant to hazard a guess on the nature and extent of this recovery and the time the major economies will take to return to their pre-recession growth levels.

Announcing a Foreign Trade Policy in this economic climate is indeed a daunting task. We cannot remain oblivious to declining demand in the developed world and we need to set in motion strategies and policy measures which will catalyse the growth of exports. 

Agriculture and industry has shown remarkable resilience and dynamism in contributing to a healthy growth in exports. In the last five years our exports witnessed robust growth to reach a level of US$ 168 billion in 2008-09 from US$ 63 billion in 2003-04. Our share of global merchandise trade was 0.83% in 2003; it rose to 1.45% in 2008 as per WTO estimates. Our share of global commercial services export was 1.4% in 2003; it rose to 2.8% in 2008. India’s total share in goods and services trade was 0.92% in 2003; it increased to 1.64% in 2008. On the employment front, studies have suggested that nearly 14 million jobs were created directly or indirectly as a result of augmented exports in the last five years. The short term objective of our policy is to arrest and reverse the declining trend of exports and to provide additional support especially to those sectors which have been hit badly by recession in the developed world. We would like to set a policy objective of achieving an annual export growth of 15% with an annual export target of US$ 200 billion by March 2011. In the remaining three years of this Foreign Trade Policy i.e. upto 2014, the country should be able to come back on the high export growth path of around 25% per annum. By 2014, we expect to double India’s exports of goods and services. The long term policy objective for the Government is to double India’s share in global trade by 2020. In order to meet these objectives, the Government would follow a mix of policy measures including fiscal incentives, institutional changes, procedural rationalization, enhanced market access across the world and diversification of export markets. Improvement in infrastructure related to exports; bringing down transaction costs, and providing full refund of all indirect taxes and 

For upgradation of export sector infrastructure, ‘Towns of Export Excellence’ and units located therein would be granted additional focused support and incentives. The policy is committed to support the growth of project exports. A high level coordination committee is being established in the Department of Commerce to facilitate the export of manufactured goods / project exports creating synergies in the line of credit extended through EXIM Bank for new and emerging markets. This committee would have...
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