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Centre asks states to appoint commissioners to boost exports

Seeking to involve state governments in boosting country's exports, the Centre has asked them to appoint export commissioners to step up efforts to boost shipments.

The export commissioner would help in ensuring easing of bottlenecks and development of infrastructure through appropriate allocation of plan resources, an official said.

The Commerce Ministry has made several efforts in the past few months to mainstream the states so that they focus on boosting exports. The nodal officers have been tasked to emphasise the point of development of an export strategy by the state government, the official said, adding the officers have also been working with the state governments to implement such strategies and prepare a list of infrastructure projects which will ensure full potential of exports growth.

Commerce Secretary Rajeev Kher had written to chief secretaries of 15 states to facilitate this task and advised the state governments to appoint export commissioners for coordination of all export-related activities, the official added.

Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had also written to the Chief Ministers of 15 states last month regarding their involvement in expansion of exports to help contain the current account deficit.

The country's exports in the last three years have been hovering around $300 billion. It was $312.35 billion, $300.4 billion and $307 billion in 2013-14, 2012-13 and 2011-12 respectively.

The government is taking several steps to boost the shipments and it is soon expected to announce measures in the forthcoming foreign trade policy (FTP). Exports growth slipped to 7.33 per cent in July  pushing up the trade deficit to a year-high of $12.22 billion.    
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