‘Some measures soon’: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman reviews coronavirus impact on industry
Sitharaman addressed the mediapersons after meeting the industry representatives and other stakeholders on Tuesday afternoon to assess the impact of the novel coronavirus, which is now officially known as Covid-19.Updated: Feb 18, 2020, 20:47 IST
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said that the government is soon going to announce measures to arrest the disruption in some sectors due to coronavirus outbreak.
“The government has reviewed impact of outbreak of coronavirus on industry,” Sitharaman said at a press briefing on Tuesday, adding, “Based on comprehensive consultation, some measures will be announced shortly.”
It is too early to talk about the impact of the outbreak on Make-in-India initiative, said Sitharaman, assuring that there are no concerns about price rise so far.
Sitharaman addressed the mediapersons after meeting the industry representatives and other stakeholders on Tuesday afternoon to assess the impact of the novel coronavirus, which is now officially known as Covid-19.
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The meeting is convened after the industry expressed apprehensions that the outbreak of the disease in China would also damage the Indian economy, which is struggling to raise consumption and accelerate the economic growth.
The Finance Minister said that pharmaceutical, chemical and solar equipment makers have raised voice about some disruption due to the outbreak.
The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) had earlier said in a report that India as well as other countries require to have strategies for “minimising risks and managing the situation”.
“China is facing a quarantine-like situation with movement of goods and people to and from the country facing a lockdown. While the situation for human impact is very serious, the economic impact will cascade into loss of employment, markets, and small enterprises,” it said.
The recently released official trade data reflected the impact of the epidemic on both exports and imports. India’s merchandise exports in January 2020 fell by 1.66 per cent in January to $25.97 billion and imports dropped by 0.75 per cent ($41.14 billion) on an annual basis amidst rising fear of global trade disruptions due to the spread of the coronavirus.
The CII report said, “The outbreak of Covid-19 in China is expected to have significant global economic impact.”
According to domestic retailers, India may face supply crunch due to shutdown of several Chinese factories.
China supplies items such as toys, furniture, hardware, footwear, fabric, consumable goods, gift articles, watches, mobiles and mobile accessories, electronic goods, electrical products, medical and surgical equipments, surgical goods, pharmaceuticals, iron, steel, engineering goods, chemicals, construction instruments, kitchen equipments, auto spare parts, paper, stationary items, fertilisers, plastic and plastic products, fancy decorative items, cosmetics, computers and computer accessories, solar panels, and bamboo sticks for making ‘agarbatti’.