Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal on Thursday (5 May) asked project exporters to diversify and foray into markets of the developed world and urged them to not restrict themselves to government line of credit projects, and projects in the developing world.
Goyal said this while delivering the Keynote Address at the ‘Summit on Enhancing Global Opportunities for Indian Project Exporters’ organized by the Exim Bank in New Delhi.
Developed countries may very well offer advantages of low risk and lower capital requirement with higher credit rating of projects which will enable companies to have higher credit limits, the minister said.
He complimented India Exim Bank for supporting exporters, for organizing the Summit by including international stakeholders, and for conducting the study on Indian Project Exports, according to a Commerce Ministry release.
Outlining the challenges that global economy has been facing since the start of 2022 such as the Omicron wave, global supply chain disruptions, soaring raw material costs, container shortages, global financial market volatility and geopolitical tensions, the minister observed that it was in this context that the summit is both timely and important.
Observing that several heads of governments and ministers had chosen India as their first destination post Covid, he said that it signalled the tremendous interest that the India story has generated in the world.
It is a recognition of efforts put in by each citizen and is indicative of a bright future for the nation, he added.
The minister congratulated all the stakeholders for the blockbuster export performance of nearly $675 billion in 2021-22 and the record-breaking services export of nearly $254 billion, even with a pandemic induced slow down in travel and hospitality.
Even the export figures of April 2022 which touched almost $38 billion are historic, he noted.
Goyal said that the IT sector’s performance during the pandemic was especially noteworthy and added that India did not let down a single international commitment during the pandemic.
Thanks to visionary initiative like Digital India, the nation adapted very well to the exigencies of covid and made record service exports possible in a covid year, he explained.
Setting a target of $1 trillion worth of goods and services export each by 2030, the Minister said that the target could be achieved only with the whole-hearted participation of every single stake holder.
The minister also urged the banking sector to abandon the mindset of conservatism that has set in the sector and be open to taking some risks and added that risk-taking was an integral part of business.
India has all the necessary ingredients to become a global player in project exports, the minister said, adding that the world has realised that it is absolutely essential to invest in infrastructure.
Project exports would also help our services and goods export to grow, he opined.
He asked the project export sector to look at credit enhancement schemes and find backstop arrangement for private banks to come into project financing.
Highlighting the Government’s Lines of Credit (LOC) programme that has particularly been pivotal in creating opportunities for Indian project exporters, the minister said that through Concessional Financing Scheme (CFS), the government has been supporting Indian companies bidding for strategic infrastructure projects in the overseas market.
He specified the need for building businesses that are independent of government aid and said that with such businesses, chances of growth and chances of us penetrating the markets of the developed world are better.
The minister urged Exim bank to help exporters by studying what developed world markets wanted and by guiding our infrastructure companies to meet those requirements.
He also asked project export sector to proactively engage with government’s FTA negotiations and give inputs and feedback about the market access problems or discriminations they faced with FTA countries.
He assured that these concerns would be factored into India’s FTA negotiations.
Goyal said that it was time for Indian engineers and Project Managers to build the world.
He assured to fully support Indian Project Exporters and take forward suggestions emanating from the deliberations at the summit to make India “the destination” for project exports.
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