India Govt. to review stimulus package for exports after budget

New Delhi, Feb 18 (Calcutta Tube) The government Thursday said it would take a call after the budget on providing a stimulus package for various export commodities that continued to fare poorly.

‘We will review stimulus measures announced earlier for exporters in April. We will decide on stimulus for various export sectors which continue to be in the red,’ Commerce Secretary Rahul Khullar told reporters here while releasing a study on the various aspects of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) talks.


The commerce ministry had last month announced Rs.450-500 crore as incentives – raised from its internal budget – to exporters till March 2010 to push exports of 2,000 products which have failed to come out of the red despite fiscal stimulus provided by the government since the export sector was hit by the global recession.


Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee will present the annual budget Feb 26.


India’s exports rose for the third successive month and logged a 11.5-percent growth in January at $14.34 billion, while it grew 9 percent and 18.2 percent in December and November last year after 13 straight months of decline.


Khullar said that the WTO talks were moving at a ‘very slow’ pace and hoped that the member countries would take it forward this year.


He said that a series of books which have various aspects related to WTO will help reach out to the common man at large and make this complex subject easy to understand. ‘Two-three years from now, the WTO issue will be a lively issue,’ he added.


The study which covers various aspects and issues concerning WTO has been complied by the Centre for WTO Studies under the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), but is not the government’s view on WTO.


Khullar later told IANS that there is still lot of ignorance on issues concerning WTO. ‘This is for the first time since the WTO talks begun in 1996 that we have come out with this subject in a form of text which is more elaborate and comprehensive and can help anybody understand the issue well,’ he said.


Asked if this was a political decision taken to build-up a public mandate on India’s persistent efforts to crack the WTO deal in its favour, he said: ‘There is nothing political about this. It is just to educate and to let people know of facts about the WTO issues’.

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