Foreign trade policy to continue beyond March 2009

Foreign trade policy to continue beyond March 2009

New Delhi: The five-year foreign trade policy that lays ground rules along with incentives and disincentives for conducting imports and exports has been extended beyond March 2009 to enable the new government to give its policy direction to the country’s external engagement.

The Foreign Trade Policy (FTP), which was unveiled by the UPA government on September 2004, was to expire on 31 March, 2009.

“It must be because of elections. They (government) will not be announcing any new policy as such and the current policy will continue," trade policy expert Arun Goyal said.

India’s foreign trade has seen a sharp growth in the last five years. Exports during 2007-08 grew by 22.9% from $126 billion in the previous fiscal, while Imports went up from $185.7 billion in 2006-07 to $235.7 billion in the last fiscal.

Goyal said that extending validity of the policy would assure exporters of continuity. “The same holds good for the Budget," he said.