India may fall short of export target

India may fall short of export target

New Delhi: India’s exports rose by 34% in October, but may fall short of the $160 billion target set for the current fiscal, Commerce Secretary G.K. Pillai said on Monday.

“If this (October) trend continues, we may achieve exports of $140-145 billion against the target of $160 billion," he told reporters on the sidelines of the India Economic Summit here.

India had revised its export target to $160 billion in April after a surge in its currency vis-a-vis the US dollar. The rupee has risen nearly 14% in the last one year and is now trading at around 39.80 to a dollar, hurting exports - particularly of textiles and leather.

Rise in exports of petroleum products, gems and jewellery and engineering goods helped boost exports, but textile, leather and marine products, tea and handicrafts are down, Pillai said.

Textile exports fell by 22%, handicrafts by 66%, leather by 9% and marine products almost by 20%.

The government has circulated a Cabinet note to extend more concessions to exporters, especially in textiles, leather and handicrafts segments, the Commerce Secretary said.

These concessions could include extension of service tax exemption to new segments, besides refund of state-level taxes.

The proposals are likely to be taken up by the Cabinet this week, Pillai said.

Out of 21 services on which tax is levied, so far nine have been exempted from the tax purview and the Commerce Ministry is pushing for 12 more.