NTIS will be revised by Feb next year: Ministry

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
NTIS will be revised by Feb next year: Ministry

Nov 14, 2014-

The Ministry of Commerce and Supplies (MoCS) on Friday said it will revise the Nepal Trade Integration Strategy (NTIS) 2010 by February, 2015. Exports of most of the 19 NTIS-listed goods and services have been disappointing over the last four years.

According to Trade and Export Promotion Centre (TEPC), the exports rose by a mere 2.08 percent to Rs 27.41 billion last fiscal year. Out of 12 products, exports of lentil, tea and ginger decreased, while those of other goods remained very low.

Buddhi Prasad Upadhyaya, programme manager of the ministry’s Nepal Enhanced Capacities for Trade and Development Project (NECTRADE), said the ministry would set export target for each of the products/services to be included in the new NTIS.

“At present, no such target has been set for individual product,” he said at an interaction organised jointly by the NECTRADE Project, MoCS and Nepal Freight Forwarders’ Association (NEFFA). He said the number of products/services will largely remain same. “But changes will be made. Those on the current list may no longer be there,” he said.

Upadhyaya said the ministry plans to clearly specify the authorities to look after specific products. “The role of an authority concerned will be clearly mentioned in the new NTIS,” he added. It will also address issues like upgradation of laboratories, cross-border trade issues, and quarantine provision, among others.

The new NTIS will incorporate promotion of the entire value chain of specific products. The ministry also plans to facilitate donor agencies to invest in potential areas.

Upadhyaya, however, did not mention which new products are to be included in the new NTIS. “The action matrix that the steering committee has been preparing will select final products.”

NTIS is one of the ambitious programmes of the government launched to promote exports of products/services having high export potential. Of the 19 products/services incorporated in NTIS 2010, 12 are goods, while seven are services.

NEFFA President Rajan Sharma urged the government to prioritise trade-related logistic services in the revised NTIS. “Logistics like consignment handling, transport service along with the supply side constraints are the main bottleneck to exports,” he said.

Sharma stressed on the need for quick implementation of the transhipment modality and single window service to boost exports of NTIS products.

Sarad Bikram Rana, former executive director of Intermodal Transport Development Board, said the government needs to properly assess local products while enlisting them under NTIS to ensure better exports. “There are many high-value products which we have failed to identify in the absence of a proper processing mechanism.”

Published: 15-11-2014 09:21

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