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Second meeting of think-tank on E-commerce Policy Framework to be held on July 30

Updated: Jul 28, 2018 08:48:58am

Second meeting of think-tank on E-commerce Policy Framework to be held on July 30

New Delhi, July 28 (KNN) The second meeting of the think-tank on “Framework for a National Policy on E-commerce”, constituted by the Ministry of Commerce & Industry is scheduled to be held on July 30, 2018.

Country’s prominent industry bodies like FICCI, CII, FISME, NASSCOM etc are a part of the think-tank.

The apex industry body for MSME associations in the country, Federation of Indian Micro and Small & Medium Enterprises (FISME), pointed that India's internet economy is expected to double from USD 125 billion as of April 2017 to USD 250 billion by 2020, majorly backed by ecommerce.

This shows a compound annual growth rate of 23% which if continues for a couple of years more can change the very fabric of India’s retail market.

FISME, which will represent the voice of MSMEs in the meeting, said, “While e- commerce has its own advantages, the point of deep worry for the nation is the negligible participation of Indigenous industry, particularly the MSME sector in the products sold through e commerce.”

In order to increase the MSME’s participation in the e-commerce platform, FISME has decided to suggest measures to help MSMEs, who traditionally have a strong presence in Indian retail, to leverage this technology platform.

Talking to KNN, FISME revealed that it will raise its concern on new data privacy laws which may act as a new set of barriers for India’s exports to EU and other western countries.

FISME further said that it would stress on an inclusive policy regime to be developed for equitable and transparent operation of this technology tool.

The industry body applauded Government’s proactive response.

FISME said it would urge for incentives and bindings for MSMEs on e-commerce platforms. It would ask for concessions, tax rebates on the income from exports by the e commerce operator.

The taxation policy for e commerce is also need major adjustments, said FISME adding that now even small suppliers with turnover below the GST threshold are required to collect tax through the platform but they are not eligible to claim input tax credit.

“To promote sell of handloom, handicraft and such items by artisans and women self-help groups etc. the general exemption in GST should be allowed for supplies through e commerce platforms,” the apex body would suggest.

FISME said it would also press on an urgent need for a Regulator for e-commerce in order to ensure an even playing field for the e-commerce companies, Indian or foreign and to ensure a niche for the MSMEs, women and artisans in the eco-system.

In the first meeting of the think-tank held in April, it was decided that India will come out with a framework for a national policy on e-commerce in the next six months. 

Some of the issues that were discussed by the think-tank included aspects of e-commerce and the digital economy like physical and digital infrastructure, the regulatory regime, taxation policy, data flows, server localisation, FDI, technology flows, skill development and trade-related aspects. (KNN Bureau)


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