March exports showed a whopping double digit growth of almost 60.50 percent clocking US$ 34.45 billion compared to March 2020. Reacting to March 2021 export figures, Sharad Kumar Saraf, President, FIEO, said that the monthly exports showed a whopping double digit growth of almost 60.50 percent clocking US$ 34.45 billion compared to March 2020, showing not only impressive signs of further revival for the sector but for the overall economy as well. This has been mainly on account of 28 out of 30 major product groups of exports showing either a very impressive high positive growth starting with triple digit and almost all ending with a very high double digit growth defying all the odds during these difficult times.
FIEO President added that the exports of other cereals, oil meals, iron ore, jute mfg. including floor covering, carpet, electronic goods, gems and jewellery, engineering goods, cereal preparations and miscellaneous processed item, rice, spices, cotton yarn/fabrics/made-ups, handloom products etc., meat, dairy and poultry products, ceramic products and glassware, drugs and pharmaceuticals, organic and inorganic chemicals, plastic and linoleum, handicrafts excl. Hand-made carpet, Marine products, Man-made yarn/fabrics/made-ups etc., Mica, coal and other ores, minerals including process, Petroleum products, RMG of All Textiles, Coffee, Fruits and vegetables, Leather and leather manufactures, Tobacco, and Tea were the sectors, which contributed towards showing such a whopping performance by the exports sector during the month.
Such a whopping growth in exports during the month also helped in taking the merchandise exports to over USD 290 billion for FY 2020-21 during such difficult and torrid times, which was well forecasted by FIEO said Saraf. FIEO Chief also reiterated that the support and help provided by the Government especially the Union Finance Minister and Union Commerce and Industry Minister during these challenging times has been commendable. Mr Saraf also thanked the overall exporting community for achieving such figures even during these times. Further an increase in March 2021 imports by 53.74 percent to USD 48.38 billion compared to the same period during the previous fiscal led to a trade deficit of USD 13.93 billion, which is an increase of 39.62 percent during the month is definitely a concern, which should be looked into.
FIEO President urges the government to soon notify the RoDTEP rates to remove uncertainty from the minds of the trade and industry thereby forging new contracts with the foreigner buyers. Mr Saraf also reiterated that the government must address some of the key issues including announcement of the new FTP soon after September, 2021, adequate availability of containers, release of the required funds for RoDTEP, MEIS and clarity on SEIS benefits, softening of freight charges, resolving risky exporters’ issues and continuance of seamless refund of IGST. Besides long pending demand for the creation of an Export Development Fund for marketing of Brand India products and various other infrastructure bottlenecks also needs to be looked into to bring back exports on the double-digit growth trajectory.
Further since we have momentum with us, we should aim at exports of US$ 350 billion in this financial year so that we not only cover the lost ground but also help the economy to move to much needed double digit growth, added President FIEO.