Bengal government has set a target of doubling the export growth rate of the state within 2021, said Industry, Commerce and Enterprise minister Amit Mitra on Monday. He was addressing a workshop with the exporters, industries and various other stakeholders at a city hotel to accelerate the process of export promotion from the state.
Despite some issues relating to the non-payment of refunds to the exporters, particularly to the small-scale ones, the state government has been able to achieve export growth rate of 11.17 percent last year.
Dr Mitra said that there was an export of 8.23 billion US dollars from Bengal in the financial year 2016-17, which has gone up to 9.15 billion US dollars in 2017-18. Products worth around Rs 62,000 crore have been exported from the state in 2017-18.
The Bengal government is taking all possible steps to double the figure in the next three years. “We have achieved 11.17 percent growth rate in exports, which is pretty high among all other states. It was around 10 percent last year.
The export growth rate of the country according to CAGR remained at 6.01 percent for a period from 2007-08 up to 2016-17. The overall export that stands at Rs 62,000 will be doubled in the next three years,” Dr Mitra said.
According to the minister, an information centre will be set up jointly by the West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation (WBIDC) and the MSME department, to disseminate information relating to the exports and various schemes.
An export cell will be set up at the district industrial centres, so that people interested in exports can gather information relating to it. Altogether 80 officers from industry and MSME sectors will be given training at the Institute of Foreign Trade in Kolkata, for a period of one month from July 5.
Among the total number of officers, around 60 would be from the MSME department, while the rest would be from industries. After returning to the district industrial centres, these officers will give answer to the quarries of the potential exports. They will be made aware on how the documentation is done.
Dr Mitra also said that a dyeing centre has come up at Nabadwip, which will meet global standards so that the exporters from the state would no longer face any problems during the certification. Around 50,000 weavers would also be benefitted from the project. There was an overall export of 825 million US dollar of iron and steel from Bengal in 2016-17 and the target is to reach up to 1,500 million US dollar within the next three years.
While gold and other precious material export remained at 711 million US dollar, with a target of 1,200 million US dollar. The Bengal government has developed a major infrastructure by setting up a Gems and Jewellery Park at Ankurhati in Domjur in this regard. In the leather sector, export stands at 687 million dollar and the target is to reach 1,500 million dollar.
Asia’s biggest leather park has come up at Bantala. The state government has allotted a Rs 400 crore investment in Bantala. Marine products and petroleum products have seen a rise in the export. The minister also reminded that apart from airport and sea port, a land port should also be set up for accelerating the exports. In case of fresh vegetables, the exporters were facing problems as they have to export the products through Vizag port. The issue would be taken up with the Union commerce minister.