Commerce, industry depts to meet PM tomorrow

Tags: News
After reviewing the agriculture and energy sectors, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will tomorrow brainstorm with various ministers as well as officials on issues related to exports, trade pacts and manufacturing.

Secretaries at the departments of commerce, industry, heavy industry and public enterprises will apprise Modi of developments in these sectors.

"Secretaries of these departments will give presentation to the Prime Minister. Ministers concerned will also be present in the meeting," a source told PTI.

The Department of Commerce is expected to apprise the PM of issues pertaining to areas such as exports and the steps it is taking to boost trade with other countries, sources said.

Issues related to Free Trade Agreements are also likely to figure in the presentation. The Indian industry has raised concerns over these pacts, saying that FTAs are impacting the country's manufacturing sector.

"Revival of special economic zones would also find place in the commerce secretary's presentation," said a source. Revamping of SEZs is important to boost manufacturing, attract investments and create jobs.

Similarly, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion may also talk about ways to boost the manufacturing sector of the country.

The DIPP's move of liberalising foreign direct investment norms in sectors such as defence and railways would also find place in the meeting.

"Relaxation of rigid labour laws and problems related with land acquisition would also be explained to the Prime Minister," the source said, adding that the department of heavy industry and public enterprises may talk about problems facing the auto sector.

With the June 30 deadline fast approaching for the expiry of reduced excise rate, car makers want the government to extend it further even as they adopt a wait and watch policy before considering price hikes.

In the Interim Budget presented in February, excise duty on small cars, scooters, motorcycles and commercial vehicles was reduced to 8 per cent from 12 per cent; to 24 per cent from 30 per cent for SUVs; to 20 per cent for mid-sized car from 24 per cent, and to 24 per cent for large cars from 27 per cent.

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