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PM in huddle on export muddle

The government’s top leadership and economy managers went into a huddle to take stock of the emerging situation amidst global shocks to shore up shrinking export growth.

business Updated: Nov 17, 2008 20:50 IST
HT Correspondent

The government’s top leadership and economy managers went into a huddle on Monday evening to take stock of the emerging situation amidst global shocks to shore up shrinking export growth – which has triggered talk that the annual target may be revised downwards.

A fresh package of incentives for exports is likely.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh confabulated for more than one-and-a-half hours with finance minister P.Chidambaram, commerce and industry minister Kamal Nath, Reserve Bank governor D.Subba Rao and Planning Commission deputy chairperson Montek Singh Ahluwalia.

The country’s exports is projected to decline by 15 per cent in October this fiscal, for the first time in any month in five years, and likely to miss the $200 billion target for 2008-09. Last year, India exported $158 billion-worth goods of
which crisis-hit US accounted for 13 per cent.

“There is a slowdown in the economies in the Western world; so there is bound to be slowdown in exports. The Prime Minister’s Committee (set up to handle the global crisis) will review this. We are looking at various measures that can help sustain exports,” Commerce and Industry Minister Kamal Nath told reporters at the India Economic Summit.

“We are working on the package ... There are many areas that need to be addressed,” Nath said.

“We are going to see how the level-playing field can be provided to our exporters, which means totally waiving duties and taxes,” Nath said.

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