The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) has once again extended the existing Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) (2015-20) for another six months until September 30 to ensure the continuity of the foreign trade policy.
The development comes amid global trade disruptions due to month-long tensions between Russia and Ukraine. FTP is an elaborate policy guideline and strategy to promote the export of goods and services. The existing policy came into effect on April 1, 2015 and was valid for five years.
However, a new FTP was postponed and the existing policy was extended until March 31, 2021, as businesses grappled with the disruptions caused by Covid-19. The policy was again extended until September 30, 2021, and then until March 31, 2022, as the government had nothing substantial to roll out in the new policy.
Government officials said the Center may take longer to come up with any new programs for exporters.
In recent years, the government has phased out several incentive programs for exporters. For example, India’s Merchandise Export Scheme (MEIS) was scrapped after a World Trade Organization (WTO) ruling found that certain export incentive schemes violated of the trade body by providing export subsidies for a wide range of goods. Subsequently, a WTO-compliant export boost program was already notified and rolled out last year, even before the announcement of a new trade roadmap.
Currently, exporters benefit from programs such as the Interest Equalization Program, Transportation Subsidy Program, Reimbursement of State and Central Taxes and Levies (RoSCTL), and Remission of Duties and Taxes on Export Commodities (RoDTEP ).