Chennai: The Union government has ruled out any immediate, additional relief measures for exporters in the wake of the rupee continuing to appreciate against the dollar, even as exporters demand further sops from the government.
“We have already given them two sets of reliefs; the first one was valued at Rs1,400 crore and the other was Rs1,500 crore,” said finance minister P. Chidambaram in Chennai on Sunday. “They got some additional duty entitlement pass book benefits, which have been valued at about Rs3,200 crore. So, we have already done enough.” He however added: “But if it becomes necessary to give them more benefits, we will look into it.”
In response to a question about the loss of jobs in export-oriented companies, Chidambaram said, “Some of the reports are exaggerated. Exports are still growing at about 18 or 19 % a year. In the long run, exporters have to learn to live with a competitive exchange rate. What we are concerned is with the rapid appreciation of the rupee. Government has acted swiftly by giving them concessions, on three separate occasions through relief packages, which approximately amount to Rs5,000 - 5,500 crore.” Earlier this month, the finance ministry announced the reintroduction of interest payment on money parked by exporters in their Exchange Earners Foreign Currency (EEFC) account while enabling them to convert dollars into rupee when required.