Govt may announce steps in Budget 2021 to promote e-commerce exports, imports

The government in the budget next week is expected to announce measures such as extending the facility of bulk clearance for e-commerce imports and exports with a view to promoting the growth of this fast-growing segment in the country, sources said.

They said that as there is a multi-fold increase in the e-commerce sector in the country, a significant volume of products is imported into and exported out of India through this platform and there is a need to find a balance between control and facilitation for the sector.

Currently, importers and exporters are required to submit individual/separate clearance documents for each package with the Indian customs department, which adds cost for traders to conduct business through e-commerce.

“With an aim to support the growth of the e-commerce sector in India, the facility for bulk clearance of import and export is required for e-commerce import and exports. Additionally, a simplified process in case of return of e-commerce shipments would also help in promoting the growth,” one of the sources said.

Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman will unveil the Budget for 2021-22 on February 1. According to exporters, easing of processes for the sector would further help in boosting the country’s outbound shipments.

“Extending the facility of bulk clearance is a good idea. Globally this facility is there. It will help in reducing transaction cost. if it is permitted, it would hugely benefit the e-commerce trade,” Federation of Indian Export Organisation’s Director General Ajay Sahai said. A leather exporter said the move if announced in the Budget would help promote exports through e-commerce medium.

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