India can 'soon start incense stick exports to EU'
New Delhi: Indian incense stick exporters can soon start shipping the product to European markets, including Italy, after putting appropriate labelling on the goods.
The exports of these sticks to Europe were earlier facing issues after Italian customs authorities seized consignments, alleging that the product contains harmful chemicals beyond a permissible limit. The issue was immediately taken up by Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu with Italian authorities for its resolution as it is a labour-intensive cottage industry. "Thanks to a concerted effort of our embassy and competent authorities in Rome, the complex issue concerning the exports of incense sticks from India to Italy is finally resolved," Italian Ambassador to India Lorenzo Angeloni has said in his letter to Prabhu.
As Italy is a member of the European Union, restrictions on imports of these sticks from India apply to all the member countries. Alerts concerning Indian incense sticks have been removed by the European Union's Rapid Alert System database, the Ambassador said.
According to the Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts, India annually exports these sticks worth about Rs 450 crore to Europe.