No export sops till next budget: Montek Singh

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Montek Singh Alhuwalia-Indian Planning Commission of India
New Delhi, Jan 21: Montek Singh Ahluwalia, the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission said on Tuesday, Jan 21 that there would be no more tax incentives till the next Budget. This announcement came when the exporter are planning to seek tax exemption on export income at a high level meeting with the Centre.

Meanwhile, Kamal Nath, the Commerce and Industry minister said to media that the government is worried about the job losses in the export sector, adding that the Centre was mulling measures to minimise the pain. He said, "I have not talked (about sops). We have said we will meet the exporters and listen to them. We will then analyse the causes and see what needs to be done."

Montek Singh said, "do not expect any tax rate changes between now and the next Budget." "What is most important in the next two months is to implement the stimulus package that has been announced. I do not see any tax rate change in the current fiscal year," he added.

However, A Sakthivel, the President, Federation of Indian Export Organisation (FIEO) said to the sources that they will ask for a tax holiday on export income, an increase in the refunds through duty drawback and DEPB (Duty Entitlement Passbook Scheme), a moratorium for two years on term loans, an exemption from service tax and fringe benefit tax, and export credit across the board at 7 pc interest rate.

Exporters said that as no orders are there beyond Feb, government should provide more sops, if not the exports for the fiscal would not even touch $170 billion, ie $30 billion short of government target. This fiscal the exporters witnessed a major fall of demand in their primary markets like US, European Union and Japan. They warned that if the present trend continued there would be approximately 10 million job losses by March 2009.

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OneIndia News (With inputs from Agencies)

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