Apparel exporters have urged the Government to make some major changes in Special Advance Authorisation scheme (SAAS) and also requested resolution of operational issues for Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) and redressal of the issue of duty disadvantage in overseas markets by entering into early negotiations of Free Trade Agreements (FTA)/Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA).
These issues were raised in a virtual meeting called by Board of Trade to seek suggestions on new Foreign Trade Policy. The Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal chaired the meeting.
The SAAS is specifically meant for the apparel sector.
During the virtual meeting, Dr. Sakthivel, said “We have suggested issuance of Special Advance Authorisations to the apparel sector on self-declaration and self-ratification basis.”
He also said that at present, the facility of self-certification and self-ratification, available under Advance Authorisation scheme to other sectors, is not available to the apparel sector.
In cases where Standard Input-Output Norms (SION) are not there, exporters in the apparel sector have to wait for a longer period for getting SION fixed in the norms committee.
So, for faster clearances of these cases, facilities of self-certification and self-ratification must be made available to the apparel sector as well.
The changes were also suggested in the Export Promotion Capital Goods (EPCG) scheme to take care of the growing needs of capital investment in the sector.
The council also recommended that the entire process of flagging an exporter as a ‘risky exporter’ to removal of the flag and resumption of refunds should be completed within 30 days, and a protocol must be developed for transparent flow of information.
In many cases, the entire process takes more than a year impacting the exporter.