Nagpur: Dr (Smt) Vijaya Katti, Chairperson & Professor at Indian Institute of Foreign Trade conducted presentation on “Opportunities for Exporters in SAARC Region” which was organised by EXIM Forum of Vidarbha Industries Association at VIA. The session was included details about business opportunities in SAARC Region, Niryaat Bandhu Scheme and Online Tools for International Business.
Dr Katti informed about the benefits to exporting units in (SAARC) South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation countries. She said eight countries including India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Maldives, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Nepal, all are neighbouring countries that share a lot of similarities in terms of business, culture and languages. Because of this Indian has adopted a liberal trade policy with these countries. Benefits for Exporters to exports to SAARC countries are eligible to all benefits available to exports to other countries of the world.
She explained about agreement on South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA) was signed by all the member states of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) is a special type of agreement that gives access to only certain goods. Preferential Trade Agreement is done by reducing tariffs, but it does not abolish them completely.
She said from India we are exporting to Afghanistan on eight exportable items including tea, medicines, sugar, cement. Bangladesh is one of the largest export markets for Indian trade. The bilateral trade between the two nations is carried out as per guidelines given in the Bangladesh Trade Agreement. Items exported include wheat other cereals, dairy products, oils meals, cotton yarn, fabrics, made ups, petroleum crude and products, plastic and linoleum products rice machinery and instruments, etc. In Bhutan all export transactions are carried out in Indian Rupees and Bhutanese Ngultrum. Sri Lanka is the biggest export market for India. Major items of export from India have been pulses, wheat, chemicals inorganic/ organic agro chemicals rubber manufactured goods except footwear, iron and steel bar/rod etc. India-Nepal Trade Treaty between India and Nepal is signed for the time period of five years. Under this trade agreement major items exported include drugs, pharmaceuticals and fine chemicals, petroleum product. In Maldives major exports items to Maldives include rice other than basmati, sugar, fresh vegetables, miscellaneous processed item. With Pakistan No trade agreement has been signed between India and Pakistan till 2007. Although India has granted the status of “Most Favoured Nation” to Pakistan since 1996 but Pakistan has yet to reciprocate by granting this status to India.
She also explained about the Niryat Bandhu Scheme in detailed, which is an initiative of Govt of India for mentoring first generation entrepreneurs in the field of international trade by reaching out to them through training programs, counselling sessions and facilitation. She said DGFT has collaborated with the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT) to bring this unique program. Today, it has evolved into a world class Institute which encompasses the full spectrum of International Business Management and Strategy, through its focus on the three pillars of Research, Training and Education. She said online Certificate Program in Export & Import Business would significantly help Small & Medium Scale Enterprises in employment generation and improving their business turnover.
Anupam Kumar, ITS Asst. Director General, O/o The Jt. Director General of Foreign Trade, Nagpur emphasized the participants “Online tools for International Business.” If any exporters/importers requires more details about drawback scheme, Niryat Bandhu Scheme may visit local office.
Earlier, Dr Suhas Buddhe, Hon. Secretary – VIA welcomed the guest speakers with floral bouquets and in his welcome address said exporters of region should take advantage of similarity and culture of SAARC countries. Gaurav Sarda, Chairman of VIA EXIM Forum conducted theprogram and proposed a formal vote of thanks. The program was largely attended by exporters, manufacturers involved in International Business, VIA members and prospective exporters.