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Handicraft exporters disappointed with budget

27
Feb '10
While reacting favourably to the only point of the Union Budget for 2010 related to the Handicraft sector, Mr. Raj Kumar Malhotra, Chairman, Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts(EPCH) thanked the Government for extending the concessional export finance regime for handicrafts sector for one more year till March 31, 2011.

Mr. Malhotra said that “Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee's announcement for extending the interest subvention of 2 per cent for one more year is considered as a relief to exporters of handicrafts, handlooms, carpets and small and medium enterprises.” Earlier, the scheme was to expire by the end of the current financial year on March 31, 2010.

Council Chairman also expressed his disappointment for not considering the major issues of Section 10B (A) relief for exemption of Income Tax for handicraft exporters.

Also, the relief of Import Duty for tools and fixtures and a relief on Service Tax for the membership of the Councils and participation in the fairs and exhibitions have not been included in the Budget.

Mr. Malhotra stated that the overall impact of the Union Budget is not labour-intensive sectors friendly such as Handicrafts exports. “These sectors were badly hit by the global economic meltdown and the extension of this relief by one more year would give them a new lease of life,” he added.

Handicrafts sector provides direct employment to over six million people and during the economic slow down in the last two years, about half a million people had lost their source of livelihood.

EPCH is the nodal export promotion body in India under the aegis of the Ministry of Textiles, Govt. of India.

Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts


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