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Indonesia agrees to import Indian rice & sugar to push trade volume to $50 billion

Sep 18, 2019

SE Asia’s biggest nation Indonesia has decided to purchase rice and sugarNSE 0.74 % from India — a move that will help to reduce trade deficit between the two sides and push trade volume to $ 50 billion by 2025.
 
The bilateral trade is currently in favour of Indonesia and export of rice and sugar from India will help to bridge trade deficit, ET has learnt.
 
This decision to import Indian rice and sugar is understood to have been taken by Jakarta in the backdrop of India providing level playing field to Indonesian palm oil by charging same duties on Malaysian palm oil.
 
On September 16 the Embassy of India, Jakarta, in partnership with the Ministry of Trade of Government of Indonesia, jointly hosted a Multi Product Road Show, focusing on exports of Bovine Meat, Rice and Sugar from India to Indonesia.
 
    
Source: Economictimes.indiatimes



RCEP talks: Commerce Ministry to take views from dairy-consuming industry

Sep 18, 2019

The Union Commerce Ministry is set to meet members of the dairy consuming-industry to seek their views on whether or not to allow dairy as part of negotiations under Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). This is part of the stakeholders’ consultation process on dairy sector.
 
The meeting is to be held on Wednesday in New Delhi.
 
It is learnt from the sources that the Department of Commerce is meeting multinational dairy product players, besides some home grown companies, as well as dairy federations to explore how RCEP can provide an export opportunity for dairy products in high-value-added segments, using imports from the RCEP partners.
 
The agenda
About 60 top dairy consuming-players including Ferrero, Hersheys, Nestle, Kwality, Unilever, Lotte, Pepsico, besides domestic private players such as Reliance, Havmor, Dinshaw's and some dairy federations have been invited for the meet.
 
The agenda of the meet clearly shows it aims to lay the ground for allowing dairy imports under RCEP talks. While it aims to discuss issues of price and product differentiation, it appears that it will primarily focus on the consumption side of the dairy industry, than the production side. The agenda is silent on safeguarding interests of milk producers and dairy farmers, said an industry source in the know of the meeting.
    
Source: The Hindu Businessline



India to enhance economic relations with Slovenia

Sep 18, 2019

President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday assured Indians living abroad that the government is increasingly using technology to address their concerns.
 
Kovind who was addressing the Indian community and Friends of India here also said that India was committed to enhancing the economic relations with Slovenia.
 
 
There is good potential to strengthen trade, investment, technology, and cooperation. I am hopeful that the fruitful engagements of the business delegation accompanying me with their Slovenian partners will lay down a new path of trade and technology tie-ups,Kovind said.
 
 
 
The president, who reached Slovenian capital Ljubljana on Monday, is on the concluding leg of his nine-day three-nation visit to Iceland, Switzerland, and Slovenia.
    
Source: deccanherald.com



Structural reforms in agri,exports must to revive growth: Amitabh Kant

Sep 18, 2019

Structural reforms in agriculture and exports are needed to bring growth rate back to higher levels, Niti Aayog chief executive Amitabh Kant said Tuesday.
 
He also said the fundamentals of the economy are intact which will help the government take back the economy to the higher growth trajectory soon despite the global slowdown.
 
 
Comments come at a time when the economy has slowed to a six-year low of 5 percent in the June quarter and exports began to degrew, amidst the deepening slump even in the low- ticket FMGC sector, leave alone the high-ticket automobiles.
 
If we have to grow at a higher rate of 9-10 percent for a long period, we need to take structural reforms in agriculture and exports," Kant told a function.
 
Admitting that the structural reforms like GST, and IBC etc had some impact in growth, he said in the long-run these reforms will take the country to higher growth path.
 
 
The government is alive, receptive and despite the global headwinds, we are very conscious that we have to take the country back to very high trajectory growth rate as our fundamentals are totally intact and we have a very vibrant private sector and have a government which is committed to reforms, he said.
 
    
Source: Economictimes.indiatimes



MSMEs’ overall export credit cost to be reduced with new loan scheme for exporters, says FIEO

Sep 18, 2019

Enhancing the scope of Export Credit Insurance Scheme (ESIC) by Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India (ECGC) will help lower the overall export credit cost including interest rates particularly for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME), said Sharad Kumar Saraf, President, FIEO. The initiative, which is part of the new scheme —  Nirvik announced by the Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman last week in order to boost exports by giving more credit access to exporters, will provide much-needed support to them for exporting to countries with little or more risks, according to Saraf.
 
Under the new scheme, insurance cover has been increased from the current 60 per cent to 90 per cent of the principal and interest. In order to facilitate banks further Ministry of Commerce & Industry has enhanced Insurance cover for banks up to 90% for the working capital loans and moderation in premium incidence for the MSME sector, the commerce ministry said in a statement.
 
As of now, the cost of capital and its access is an issue for MSME exporters. While there is a subvention scheme but the sector still needs more access to capital. The refund guarantee by ECGC to banks will offer large support to exports by MSMEs. Also, refund automation for the input tax credit will ease out some liquidity pressure for the exporters with more access to the working capital, FIEO Director Prashant Seth told Financial Express Online.
 
Commerce minister Piyush Goyal had last week highlighted the ‘not satisfactory’ growth in exports this year despite the country’s huge export potential due to the trade dispute between the US and China which has provided a window of opportunity to Indian manufacturers, the minister had said. Piyush Goyal’s comments for exports boost assumes importance for the MSME sector given its share in India’s total exports in FY19 stood at 48.10 per cent as per the information from Directorate General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics, MSME Minister Nitin Gadkari had said in a written reply in Rajya Sabha in July. The value for MSMEs’ share of exports was $147.4 billion while last year till September MSMEs exported goods worth $78.5 billion.
 
Marketing front of MSMEs for exports needs to be improved because the current incentives in the promotional scheme is roughly around Rs 300-400 crore but this is very minuscule given the size of the MSME sector, said Seth adding that apart from marketing, the focus also has to be on the training, capacity building and research & development for MSME exports. In the global scenario, we are mostly in the low value-added segment. We want to push exports and move up the value chain and for that technology will definitely be needed, Seth said.
    
Source: Financial Express



National Logistics Policy to soon be released, says Piyush Goyal

Sep 18, 2019

India will soon come out with a national logistics policy to bring down the cost of logistics to at least below 10 per cent, Commerce and Industry and Railways Minister Piyush Goyal has said.
 
Addressing the Asia Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum 2019 in the capital, Goyal also said that the Government was on a national effort engaging with Railways, ports, shipping industry, airline industry and roads transport ministry to collectively work on a programme to bringing down the logistics cost.
 
This Forum, which is in its ninth edition, was held for the first time in India and jointly organised by the Commerce Ministry, ADB, CII and UN-ESCAP. The main focus of the Forum is on how digital and sustainable trade facilitation measures and practices can bring prosperity in the Asia Pacific region. On the occasion, Goyal launched ADB-ESCAP joint publication 'Asia Pacific Trade Facilitation Report 2019' with a theme chapter of 'Bridging Trade Finance Gaps through Technology'.
 
Goyal said in his address that the implementation of GST in India has shown significant results particularly in terms of bringing down travel time to long distances through road transport with entry points becoming seamless (very few check posts). The efficiency of road transport has caused little bit of stress for the Railways, who are competing with far more efficient road transport system, he said.
    
Source: The Hindu Businessline



Indo-US trade issues will be resolved soon: Jaishankar

Sep 18, 2019

The India-US relationship is in good health and sharper edges in trade ties will be smoothened soon, external affairs minister S Jaishankar said on Tuesday.
 
India-US relations have come a long way...look at the quality of ties, the political comfort, the security cooperation... There is no facet of the relationship today which hasn’t gone upwards over the past 20 years. For an event like Houston, from both sides the approach is bipartisan. The relationship is in very good health, Jaishankar said.
 
The trajectory has always been upwards. As in any relationship, there are issues. The trade problems are normal with people you are closest to since most trade happens with them.
 
Jaishankar said the government had been engaging with the US to try and resolve the trade issues. “It’s a glass 90% full rather than 10% empty, he said.
 
 
On US President Donald Trump attending the ‘Howdy, Modi!’ event on Sunday in Houston, Jaishankar said it was a great achievement for the Indian-American community.
 
 
You have an event of this size and someone like Trump coming there, it shows the respect the Indian community commands. They’re motivated by the fact that someone like Narendra Modi is the prime minister. It’s a matter of great honour that Trump has decided to come there.
 
    
Source: Economictimes.indiatimes



Indian delegation discuss bilateral ties, investment with senior Kurdistan Region leaders

Sep 18, 2019

An Indian delegation headed by Vellamvelly Muraleedharan, Minister of State for External Affairs, met on Tuesday with senior leaders of the autonomous Kurdistan Region to discuss several topics, including investment opportunities.
 
The delegates arrived in Erbil on Monday evening and were received by Safeen Dizayee, head of the Kurdistan Region’s Department of Foreign Relations.
 
The delegation met separately on Tuesday with Kurdistan Region President Nechirvan Barzani, Prime Minister Masrour Barzani, and Masoud Barzani, President of the leading Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), and the former President of the Kurdistan Region.
    
Source: kurdistan24



Food ministry pushes for increase in allocation of subsidised food grains

Sep 18, 2019

The food ministry has revived the proposal to increase by 2 kg each the allocation of subsidised food grains to 810 million poor people covered under the National Food Security Act.
 
Food minister Ram Vilas Paswan has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking his approval for this proposal, which has been lying before the Cabinet for some time.
 
If the proposal gets clearance, it will help the government offload massive stocks piled up in granaries ahead of the fresh procurement season, which starts in October.
 
 
The government currently gives 5 kg of food grains per month to every poor individual at a subsidised rate of Rs 1, Rs 2 and Rs 3 per kg for coarse grain, wheat and rice, respectively, besides allocating 35 kg of food grains to extremely poor Antyodaya families.
 
We have been trying to push this proposal which would allow every beneficiary to get 7 kg of food grains (rice/wheat/coarse cereals) at the subsidised rate instead of the existing quota of 5 kg per month, initially for at least six months. This outgo of additional food grains will ease the storage problem the government is facing due to record procurement for the last few years, said an officer close to the development.
 
    
Source: Economictimes.indiatimes



Goa to have 4 MSME clusters: Vishwajit Rane

Sep 18, 2019

 Four clusters of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) will be set up in the state, minister for industries 
 
Vishwajit Rane said on Tuesday after his meeting with Union minister Nitin Gadkari in Delhi. The land will be provided by the state government, Rane said. 
 
We have received in-principle approval for four clusters from the Centre and will proceed full swing once the final approval is received. I’m rigorously pursuing the matter with them. I’m slated to meet more official on Wednesday,” Rane told TOI from Delhi.
 
The meeting was also attended by MSME secretary Arun Panda and other key officials of the ministry, he said 
 
The Centre has been promoting the MSME cluster development programme, which has helped the earlier largely neglected sector to grow. 
 
Gadkari has informed me about the Centre’s plan of setting up technology centres across the country, Rane said, adding that Goa would get one of these extension centres. 
 
The industries minister said that the possibility of setting up a joint venture with the Central government was also discussed. 
 
We will be exploring various modalities with the Union ministry. This will definitely benefit the people of Goa and the state’s industrial sector. It has been a dream of my ministry to have such a large-scale project in Goa in order to bring in the economic development, he said.  
    
Source: Times of india



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