Commerce ministry bats for retention of stimulus

Commerce ministry bats for retention of stimulus

Pre-Budget: Sharma to meet Pranab to discuss wish-list

Commerce ministry bats for retention of stimulus

In its budget proposal, the Commerce Ministry has suggested that the fiscal incentives given to the industry be continued.

“The same level of Cenvat (excise duty) should be continued for some more time... otherwise it may unsettle the industry and impact business calculations in such a way as to disrupt the pace of industrial growth,” the ministry said.

The Centre had reduced excise duty by 6 per cent across-the-board and service tax by two per cent in different phases, beginning December 2008, to boost domestic demand which was impacted due to the global financial meltdown.

The other demands include continuation of the two per cent interest subsidy extended to exporters and extension of the export-oriented unit schemes beyond the 2010-11 fiscal.
The ministry has also sought income tax exemptions to all export promotion councils.

Concessions in interest

Commerce secretary Rahul Khullar had met revenue secretary P V Bhide in this regard last month. Since it is the Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee who has to take a final call on these proposals, Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma would meet Mukherjee soon to press for the concessions in interest rates and indirect taxes.
The country’s exports came under severe pressure since October 2008 and kept contracting till October 2009.

During April-December of this fiscal, merchandise exports declined by by 20.3 per cent to $117.58 billion from $147.56 billion in the same period last fiscal. However, since November 2009 the exports sector returned to growth for the first time in 11 months, and in December even imports began to grow.

Can’t be lax: RBI

India can’t afford to be lax about fighting inflation as the nation seeks to slow price gains to 5 per cent or less, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Deputy Governor K C Chakrabarty said in an interview in Sydney on Sunday, reports PTI from Sydney.

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