November 30, 2020

Push for MSMEs to join ecomm exports

NEW DELHI: The government is in talks with ecommerce firms to help sell goods produced by small enterprises in remote parts of the country around the world via online marketplaces, and to identify district-wise products that can be promoted globally, amid sagging exports.

“The idea is to increase overall exports, especially of small enterprises which are located in remote areas,” said an official. The move comes ahead of the government finalising the ecommerce policy. The government is urging ecommerce platforms to push exports and ensure that smaller units are included, and not just mainstream companies, the official added.

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Exports have been hovering around $300 billion since 2011-12. In the April-December period, exports fell 1.96% year on year to $239.29 billion while imports fell 8.9% to $357.39 billion, leaving a trade deficit of $118.10 billion. In FY19, total trade deficit was a record $176.42 billion.

The government had in 2018 increased the value limit for availing export incentives under the Merchandise Export from India Scheme (MEIS) to Rs 5 lakh per consignment sold via ecommerce platforms, courier or foreign post offices from Rs 25,000 earlier for handloom products, books and periodicals, leather footwear, toys, and customised fashion garments.

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