Economy
India can save $50 bn in logistics costs: Report
New Delhi : India can save up to $50 billion by bringing down logistics costs to 9 percent from the current 14 percent of the country's GDP, according to a joint study by industry chamber Assocham and Resurgent India released on Sunday.
 
"India can save up to $50 billion if logistics costs are brought down from 14 percent to nine percent of country's gross domestic product (GDP) thereby making domestic goods more competitive in global markets," the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham) said in a release here.
 
"With expected inflow of new investments owing to government's thrust on promoting domestic manufacturing sector, India's cargo and logistics industry is likely to clock a compounded annual growth rate of about 16 percent during the course of next few years," the study - Cargo and Logistics Industry in India - said.
 
Growth in logistics sector would imply improved service delivery and customer satisfaction, leading to growth in exports of Indian goods and potential to create job opportunities, it added.
 
"Appropriate policy changes and opening up capacity together with increase in speed for transportation of goods and services through various modes, namely rail, road, water and others is imperative for the growth of cargo and logistics industry in India," Assocham secretary general D.S. Rawat said in the statement.
 
"Transportation of bulk commodities through waterways can free up capacity for fast moving goods, besides, setting benchmarks and standards for industry will drive uniformity of warehouses, storage and transport equipment," he added.
 
The report said the Make in India campaign will see investments connect the country to global production networks that would generate new business for logistics thereby making it an attractive location to do business as compared to other regions in the world.
 
The government should create a uniform tax structure and do away with multiple checkpoints and documentation requirements which would lead to speedier delivery of cargo, it added.
 
In this connection, the study emphasised that passage of the constitutional amendment bill on the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in parliament will further improve the logistics sectors performance by bringing down distribution costs by up to 15 percent.
 
This landmark bill to reform India's indirect tax regime has been passed by the Lok Sabha, but is stalled in the Rajya Sabha where the ruling National democratic Alliance currently lacks a majority.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Parliament panel for enquiry into abuses in export units scheme
New Delhi : Parliament's Public Accounts Committee has voiced serious concern over irregularities and widespread misuse of the 100 percent export oriented units (EOUs) scheme and has called for a detailed inquiry into the "rampant abuses".
 
"They (PAC) accordingly recommend that a high-powered independent inquiry should be ordered in the light of the facts contained in this report with a view to find out the unscrupulous elements responsible for the rampant abuse of the scheme and also to fix responsibility of the officers for the various acts of omissions and commissions," Public Accounts Committee said its report presented in parliament earlier this week.
 
Keeping in view the "grave nature of the irregularities, the large scale misuse" and also taking into account the "enormous amount of revenue foregone", the committee said it is convinced that there is a need for undertaking a detailed inquiry into the manner of operation of this scheme.
 
Noting that the total number of EOUs have come down to 2,608 in 2013-14 from 3,109 in 2009-10, the PAC also suggested that the departments of commerce and revenue should conduct a comparative study of the benefits accrued to special economic zone (SEZ) units vis-a-vis EOUs to find out the reasons for shifting of EOUs to the SEZ sector.
 
Though duty foregone on the scheme remained static in 2012-13 and 2013-14 at Rs.5,800 crore, exports from these units dropped by 11 percent in 2013-14 from the previous financial year.
 
"Development commissioner, Santacruz Electronics Export Processing Zone (SEEPZ) Mumbai said the major factors responsible for poor growth of exports from EOUs were withdrawal of income tax benefit under section 10B of the Income Tax Act, 1961 (with effect from April 1, 2011) decreasing profit margins on export products, more attractive schemes like SEZ, where similar export benefits are available to the domestic unit without any domestic sales limitation," the report said.
 
It called for a suitable strategy to attract EOUs into the scheme and "all necessary steps should be taken to remove the impediments in their successful operations".
 
The committee also that government had foregone significant customs and central excise duties at Rs.32,932 crore during 2009-10 to 2013-14 on EOUs, the Electronics Hardware Technology Park and Software Technology Park schemes.
 
"No serious attempt has been ever made by the ministry concerned to evaluate the impact of concessions, incentives extended to EOUs from time to time," it said.
 
It also noted irregular domestic tariff area sales in 48 cases by EOUs under the development commissioners of Mumbai, Cochin, Noida, Kandla and Falta.
 
Further, its scrutiny of records revealed that 10 EOUs were allowed to exit from the scheme by allowing "incorrect rate of duty" on finished goods and "incorrect depreciation allowed on capital goods".
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Non-subsidised LPG, non-PDS kerosene, jet fuel rates hiked
New Delhi : State-run oil marketers on Sunday hiked prices of non-subsidised cooking gas, non-PDS (public distribution system) kerosene and aviation turbine fuel (ATF), following their increasing petrol and diesel prices late on Saturday night.
 
The price of non-PDS kerosene has been increased by nearly Rs.3 per litre. It now costs or Rs.49.10 a litre in Delhi as against Rs 46.17 earlier.
 
The price of non-subsidised cooking gas, which consumers buy after exhausting their quota of 12 cylinders per year, has been raised by Rs.18 per 14.2-kg cylinder. It now costs Rs.527.50 in Delhi as against Rs 509.50 previously.
 
The hike comes after three straight monthly reductions. Prices were last cut by Rs.4 on April 1.
 
Rates vary according to different local levies.
 
The price of aviation turbine fuel (ATF), or jet fuel, was also increased by 1.5 percent.
 
ATF price in Delhi was hiked by Rs.627 per kilolitre, or 1.48 percent, to Rs.42,784.01 per kl. It follows a much steeper hike of 8.7 percent, or by Rs.3,371.55 per kl on April 1.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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