Quality and scale, not subsidies, to push exports to $1 trn: Piyush Goyal

Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal on Saturday said quality, technology and scale of production -- not government subsidies -- will help India take its annual exports to $1 trillion.

He exhorted exporters and the industry as a whole to target USD 1 trillion worth of shipments.

"Why can't we aim for USD 1 trillion exports from India. We certainly can. I see no reason, (why) we cannot. For that we need to be clear on actionable items (and) subsidies are never going to get us there, I am very very clear about that," he said.

"At least in my six years of engagement, I have not found subsidies to be the solution for India's problems. I think it's quality, technology, growth, scale; and sometimes for a short period you may need to give a little thrust or support. But if they are looking at literally running a long term engagement with the world on subsidy, it is not going to work," he said.

The minister was speaking at a webinar on strategies for alleviating policy constraints for exports in select sectors. He said there is a need to identify areas where sensible policies can help take exports to USD 1 trillion.

The minister also released a study - Domestic Constraints for Exports in Select Sectors - published by the Export-Import Bank of India.

According to the study, an immediate refund of GST could increase the overall GDP by 2 per cent, exports by 7 per cent, aggregate imports by 6 per cent, and overall employment by nearly 4 per cent.

It identifies sector specific policy initiatives that could improve operational conditions and efficiency of exporters gems and jewellery, auto and auto-components, electronics, textiles and clothing, and pharmaceuticals sectors.

The study highlighted the need for direct government intervention to reduce costs at ports; attractive production oriented incentives; addressing procedural delays in approvals and refunds, as well as custom clearances by the Government; expediting GST refunds and duty drawback refunds to improve the manufacturing landscape, among others.

"The effects of immediate refund of GST on individual sectors are much larger, with exports from the six identified sectors expected to register double-digit growth," it added.

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