Import of cotton and readymade garments from African countries

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New Delhi, Apr 30 (UNI) On the occasion of the First Indo-Africa Forum Summit here on April 8, 2008, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announced a Duty Free Tariff Preference Scheme for Least Developed Countries (LDCs), the Rajya Sabha was informed today.

In a written reply, Minister of State for Textiles E V K S ELangovan said India will unilaterally provide preferential market access to exports from all the 50 least developed countries, 34 of which are in Africa.

The scheme will cover 94 per cent of India's total tariff lines.

Specifically, it will provide preferential market access on tariff lines that comprise 95.5 per cent of global exports of all Least Developed Countries.

He further said presently under the Global system of Trade Preference, India offers import duty concessions on cotton yarn and abaca fibre (30 per cent and 10 per cent concession on normal duty respectively) to 51 LDC's/developing countries. The relief derived by the textile industry on account of the above will be known after the measures are formalised.

The Minister also informed that: --The value of import of Raw Cotton from African countries was 87.96 million US dollars in 2004-05 and 11.22 million dollars in 2005-06.

--The value of import of Ready-made Garments was 0.36 million dollars in 2004-05 and 0.24 million dollars in 2005-06, and --The value of Indian textiles exports to African countries was 623.71 million dollars in 2004-05 and 583.15 million dollars 2005-06.

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