Government prepares strategy to double exports by 2014

The government Friday said it had prepared a strategy paper envisaging doubling of exports to $500 billion by 2014, in the backdrop of increasing current account deficit and uncertainties in the global markets. 

The development comes after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently said the country's current account deficit had touched 3.1 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) in June and that there was need to boost exports to counter the effects. 

"The strategy paper has been prepared in the backdrop of complex global economic environment which has seen considerable turbulence in the last few years," Commerce, Industry and Textiles Minister Anand Sharma said while chairing a meeting of the parliamentary consultative committee on commerce and industry late Thursday. 

"The government is conscious of maintaining the current account deficit and trade deficit within manageable limits," Sharma said. 

The strategy paper envisages an annual export growth of nearly 26.7 percent and focuses on areas such as products, markets, technologies and brand building. 

"At product level, we have identified sectors where we have considerable growth potential which include engineering goods, basic chemical, organic, inorganic chemical industries, pharmaceutical industry and electronics," Sharma said. 

The commerce minister further said the strategy paper had set exports target for various sectors and also intended to provide special focus on labour intensive industries. 

"We have set sectoral targets, I feel that engineering goods exports would touch $125 billion, export of chemical industry would touch $25 billion and drugs, Pharma and basic chemicals would touch $44 billion and electronic exports could reach $17 billion," Sharma said. 

The strategy paper also gives special focus on employment intensive sectors such as gems and jewellery for which the government has set a target of $70 billion and agri-exports for which the export target has been set at $22 billion. 

"The labour intensive sectors have received our special attention and would be receiving the same and better treatment," Sharma said. 

Earlier, in a move to give boost to Indian exports to new and emerging markets the government had started to provided additional support to exporters for 41 markets in Africa, Latin America, Oceania and Central Asian regions. 

"On Oct 13, 2011, we introduced a special focus market scheme to reach out to 12 new markets of Latin America, 22 new markets of Africa and seven new markets of Central Asia," Sharma added.

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