The first meeting of the Council for Trade Development and Promotion held in the capital today discussed ways of improving states' participation in boosting exports.
At a meeting attended by ministers and senior officials from 10 states, union minister of state for commerce and industry Nirmala Sitaraman expressed the hope that the council will provide a platform to ensure a continuous dialogue with state governments and UTs for creating an enabling environment conducive to international trade.
She asked state governments to provide inputs for creating facilities for testing, certification, trace-back, packaging and labelling so as to help develop a framework for making the states active partners in boosting India's exports.
She advised the states to enhance their co-operation with central agencies for setting up common facilities like testing labs, training institutes as well as packaging and storage support to industry.
The commerce minister told the states that there was a need to diversify India's services exports basket by enabling more sectors and to reach more markets. Other areas like medical tourism, nursing and healthcare, education, audio-visual media also afford an excellent potential which can be harnessed, she said.
Highlighting the measures taken for facilitating ease of doing business, the commerce minister said the number of mandatory documents required has been reduced to 3 for exports and 4 for imports as against the earlier requirements of 7 documents for exports and 10 for imports.
She requested all states to consider organising bimonthly meetings with the exporters in their states to sort out their infrastructure and tax related issues.
Later, briefing newspersons, the commerce minister said the suggestions from the state governments included strengthening of infrastructure, extending benefits to exporters and restoring the facility of ASIDE. She said the important initiatives taken by the respective state governments were also shared amongst themselves and with the centre and this will help in improving the strategy being followed by the respective states for increase in exports.
She said that the ministry will give specific replies to specific suggestions that have been given by the state representatives in the council meeting.