Commerce minister Piyush Goyal. (Photographer: T. Narayan/Bloomberg)

GSP Withdrawal ‘Not Life And Death’ For Exporters, Says Piyush Goyal

Commerce minister Piyush Goyal on Thursday said that Indian exporters do not see the withdrawal of Generalized System Of Preferences as a matter of life and death.

“It (GSP withdrawal) is not something that any of the exporters raised as a matter of life and death. It has had an impact in some places...but I think India is now moving out of the clutches that we thought we needed to promote exports,” said Goyal after a meeting with members of the Board of Trade and the Council of Trade Development and Promotion, in New Delhi.

India is no more an under-developed country or a least developed country that it is going to look at only that kind of support, the commerce minister added.

"We also believe that in our development cycle, certain countries were giving us support, which was an added benefit to move out of our problems faster, but (if) some countries have chosen a different path, we accept it gracefully and we will reorient ourselves to remain competitive even without that,” he added.

The U.S. has said it will withdraw incentives provided to Indian exporters under GSP scheme with effect from June 5.

On Thursday, Goyal said that industry and exporters should not depend on government subsidies and instead focus on becoming more competitive.

During day-long deliberations in New Delhi, exporters spoke about trade disputes, ongoing negotiations under the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership and difficulties in availability of export credit. The issues related with free trade agreement and widening trade deficit with China were also discussed.

India’s exports grew by 9 percent to $331 billion in 2018-19.

Bloomberg Quint

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