DGFT to help convert all districts as export hubs

In her Union Budget 2020-21 speech, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said that Centre and State Governments were being synergised and institutional mechanisms being created to convert each district in the country into an export hub

February 4, 2020

The DGFT is also developing a portal that may be accessed on the DGFT website to enable the states to upload all information related to the products with the export potential of every district

This export process will include the participation of key stakeholders from the spaces of agriculture, horticulture, livestock, fisheries, handicrafts, handlooms and industry in the district

The products identified, with export potential, from the 750 districts in the country are leather, metals, and minerals, spices, garments, food products, pharmaceuticals, among others

Nine states/UTs, including Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Karnataka, West Bengal, Maharashtra, and Gujarat, have already set up State Level Export Promotion Committee (SLEPC)

As part of a broad initiative to boost economic growth, the Government of India has taken up a project to convert each district in the country into an export hub. In her Union Budget 2020-21 speech on February 1, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said that the Centre and the State Governments were being synergised and institutional mechanisms being created to develop the export hubs. To drive this process, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry through the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) has been engaging with states and UTs to initiate preparation and implementation of a District Export Plan (DEP) specific to each district. The institutional structure set up for the implementation of the DEP will be administered at the district level.

The DGFT is also developing a portal that may be accessed on the DGFT website to enable the states to upload all information related to the products with the export potential of every district. The preliminary exercise for the preparation of a DEP will include an assessment of a district to identify the current export profile and its further potential in the district. This process will include the participation of key stakeholders from the spaces of agriculture, horticulture, livestock, fisheries, handicrafts, handlooms and industry in the district. Additionally, the district’s lead bank manager will work towards the participation of key Export Promotion Councils, Quality and Technical Standards Bodies, Government of India departments like MSME, Heavy Industry, Revenue, and Textiles. The DEP will support local industries from the production stage to the exporting stage. 

The products identified, with export potential, from the 750 districts in the country are leather articles, sand and stone articles, spices, garments, wool, food products, ceramics, cement, silk, carpet, glass items, metal crafts, sports goods, pharmaceuticals, engineering goods, auto parts, poultry products, vegetables, cut flowers, forest produce, bamboo products, and scientific instruments. The DEP will also enhance logistics and infrastructure and help better utilize the Market Access Initiative (MAI) Scheme for inviting foreign buyers. Nine states/UTs have already set up the State Level Export Promotion Committee (SLEPC). They include Delhi, Uttarakhand, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Karnataka, Himachal Pradesh, West Bengal, Tripura, Maharashtra, Goa, and Gujarat. Local governments will also prepare an annual district “Export Ranking Index” on export competitiveness.