Indian exporters feel the heat of India-China tension

The FIEO on Thursday reiterated that the Customs authorities at several ports in had ordered a sudden examination of Chinese consignments without any official word from the government, and this may have led to the Chinese retribution.

The Customs authorities in and , in apparently a blow-for-blow measure, have held back some consignments of Indian exports after ports in India took up the task of inspecting Chinese products, the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) has told the government.

The FIEO on Thursday reiterated that the Customs authorities at several ports in India had ordered a sudden examination of Chinese consignments without any official word from the government, and this may have led to the Chinese retribution.

 

“While we have been told there is no official communication, the examination is leading to the piling up of imports.

“Some Indian exporters have said that, in response to such action, Hong Kong and Chinese Customs are also holding back export consignments from India,” FIEO president Sharad Kumar Saraf told Commerce Secretary Anup Wadhawan in a letter reviewed by .

The exporters’ body has requested the commerce department to ask the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs to clarify things on the matter so that import partners in China and Hong Kong can end the logjam. Fears of retaliation have gripped the sector.

“China’s exports to India constitute 2.8 per cent of the country’s total. But what India sends China are 5.4 per cent of our exports,” FIEO director general Ajay Sahai said, arguing India’s larger trade exposure to China needed to be considered before took unilateral moves.

In a press conference, the FIEO said exports were expected to contract by 10 per cent in 2020-21, and it was anticipated that June exports would shrink by 12 per cent, down from May’s high 36 per cent.

However, the estimates may worsen if the government pursues a blanket ban on Chinese imports, the FIEO warned.

“We need to take a calibrated approach to banning imports from China because our industry is dependent more on industrial inputs from China than on those from any other country.

“Rather than making a hasty reaction, we have instead suggested to the Directorate General of Foreign Trade that exports of raw materials to China be tightened and a cess can be considered,” said Saraf.

He flagged the issue of lost revenue by pointing to cotton exports to China, where…

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