New Delhi, Jan 10: Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu on Thursday said that working with the states individually to meet their needs on improving Ease of Doing Business in India will benefit the country more rather than just focusing at macro level.
Prabhu called upon states and UTs to explore all possible ways of tapping into the global value and supply chain by promoting the export of services, organic agricultural produce, in corporate value addition to agricultural products and fully utilise all the schemes and programmes of the Centre.
''This will not only add to the GDP of the country but will also create greater employment,'' said Prabhu, who chaired the fourth meeting of the Council for Trade Development and Promotion (CTDP) here.
Briefing reporters after the meeting, he said, ''We are thinking about transport subsidy to states for promotion of agricultural products.''
The Minister said that all states and UTs must formulate an export strategy which is state specific and product specific and improve logistics and infrastructure in their region.
Prabhu informed those attending the meeting that the Centre has formulated an Agricultural Export Policy for the first time with a focussed plan to boost India’s agricultural exports to USD 60 billion by 2022.
''This will integrate Indian farmers and India’s high quality agricultural products with global value chains and also double India’s share in world agriculture exports,'' he said.
The Commerce Minister informed the Council that the Ministry of Commerce and Industry in collaboration with the World Bank conducts an annual reform exercise for all States/ UTs under the Business Reform Action Plan (BRAP) to improve delivery of various Central Govt regulatory functions and services in an efficient, effective and transparent manner.
This exercise will now be undertaken at the district level in close collaboration withStates/ UTs, he added.
Prabhu informed the Council regarding efforts being made by the Central Government in preparing a development plan for each and every district so that growth is led from the district upwards which will be a game changer in taking India’s GDP to USD 5 trillion in 2025.
''We are taking a micro to macro approach where we are focusing on few initiatives like Districts Led Growth, EODB and GI which aims at the development of specific district/ state which will contribute to overall economic growth of India,'' he said.
He urged the States/ UTs to make use of the Rs 5,000 crore allotted for 12 champion services sector which will lead to the creation of jobs in the services sector like Information Technology & Information Technology enabled Services (IT &ITeS), Tourism and Hospitality Services, Medical Value Travel, Transport and Logistics Services, Accounting and Finance Services, Audio Visual Services, Legal Services, Communication Services, Construction and Related Engineering Services, Environmental Services, Financial Services and Education Services.
The Commerce Minister said that every State/ UTs of India has the potential for getting Geographical Indication tag for many products of that area.
Also, States/UTs must use the benefits given by the Central Government for specific sectors like leather where Rs 2,600 crore was sanctioned by the Cabinet for the development of leather and footwear industry.
Minister of State of Commerce & Industry C R Chaudhary urged the States and UTs to take full advantage of the Trade Infrastructure for Exports Scheme (TIES) to improve export competitiveness.
Chaudhary also said that for North-Eastern States matching support of equal to or more will be provided by the Central Govt under TIES.
Representatives of 10 states/UTs attended the meeting and flagged various issues impeding exports from their regions like logistics for smooth transportation of goods and creation of warehouses/cold chain for perishable agriculture produce.
Ministers and officials from various States/ UTs also spoke about the schemes being implemented for facilitating exports, technology upgradation of existing manufacturing clusters and efforts to generate more employment.
The Council for Trade Development and Promotion provides a platform to the States/UTs to articulate their expectations and also focuses on the need for all States/UTs to create suitable infrastructure in their regions which will help in developing competitiveness in their exports.
Ministers from Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Karnataka, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Nagaland, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh spoke during the meeting.
CTDP was constituted in July 2015, to ensure a continues dialogue with State Govts/UTs on measures for providing International Trade enabling environments. It also seeks to create a framework for making States/ UTs active partners in boosting India’s export.
The Union Commerce & Industry Minister is Chairperson of CTDP Ministers’ in-charge of Trade and Commerce in State Governments/ UTs are its members.
Besides, 14 secretaries of Central Government, including Commerce, Revenue, Shipping, Civil Aviation, Agriculture, Food Processing and Economic Affairs are also its members. (UNI)