Commerce ministry to release agriculture export policy in FY19: Suresh Prabhu

The commerce ministry will release agriculture export policy, besides creating logistics hubs and bringing a multi-modal (logistics) bill this year, says commerce minister Suresh Prabhu

The commerce and industry ministry will work on several areas, including formulation of a comprehensive action plan to boost exports and give special thrust on industrial corridors in the last one year of the NDA government, union minister Suresh Prabhu said. Prabhu said several steps were taken to promote exports as well as industrial growth and many more initiatives are in the offing.

“We will release agriculture export policy this year, besides creating logistics hubs and bringing a multi-modal (logistics) bill this year,” he told. The director general of foreign trade DGFT has been asked to prepare a country and product specific plan to boost exports. These plans are being dovetailed into the action plan, collected from concerned ministries. “We have given time to them by end of this month,” he said.

The ministry has also asked the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) to involve all export promotion councils and prepare their independent plan this year to increase exports. Exports increased by 9.78 per cent in 2017-18 to $ 303 billion.

On the industry side, Prabhu said, the ministry will come out with a new industrial policy and give a special thrust on the industrial corridors, which are under different stages of implementation.

“We will also undertake Geographical Indications (GIs) campaigns and come out with a district level plan to promote economic activities. That is happening this year,” he added. A GI is primarily an agricultural, natural or a manufactured product (handicrafts and industrial goods) originating from a definite geographical territory.

Typically, such a name conveys an assurance of quality and distinctiveness, which is essentially attributable to the place of its origin. Darjeeling Tea, Tirupathi Laddu, Kangra Paintings, Nagpur Orange and Kashmir Pashmina are among the registered GIs in India.

The commerce ministry has come up with a draft agriculture export policy which is aimed at integrating Indian farmers and agricultural products to the global value chain.

Preliminary meeting with stakeholders was held to get their feedback on the proposed policy. Based on the preliminary inputs a draft policy document is prepared. The draft Agriculture Export Policy is put up in the public domain in order to seek wider consultation and feedback from the stakeholders so as to provide the final shape to the Policy.

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