Commerce and Industry Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman launched the Trade Infrastructure for Export Scheme (TIES) in New Delhi. After delinking of the ASIDE Scheme in 2015, the State Governments have been consistently requesting the support of the Centre in creation of export infrastructure. This support is imperative to act as an inducement to the States to channelize funds from their increased devolution towards creation of export infrastructure. The objective of the proposed scheme is to enhance export competitiveness by bridging gaps in export infrastructure, creating focused export infrastructure, first mile and last mile connectivity for export-oriented projects and addressing quality and certification measures.
Speaking on the occasion, Smt. Sitharaman said the Scheme is focussed on addressing the needs of the exporters. She said the focus is not just to create infrastructure but to make sure it is professionally run and sustained. The Minister added that there would be an Empowered Committee to periodically review the progress of the approved projects in the Scheme and will take necessary steps to ensure achievement of the objectives of the Scheme.
Under the Scheme, proposals of the implementing agencies for funding will be considered by an inter ministerial Empowered Committee to be chaired by the Commerce Secretary. While appraising the project the justification, including the intended benefit in terms of addressing the specific export bottlenecks, would be evaluated.
Commerce Secretary Smt. Rita Teaotia said the scheme would provide assistance for setting up and up-gradation of infrastructure projects with overwhelming export linkages like the Border Haats, Land customs stations, quality testing and certification labs, cold chains, trade promotion centres, dry ports, export warehousing and packaging, SEZs and ports/airports cargo terminuses. She said last and first mile connectivity projects related to export logistics will also be considered.
The Central and State Agencies, including Export Promotion Councils, Commodities Boards, SEZ Authorities and Apex Trade Bodies recognised under the EXIM policy of Government of India; are eligible for financial support under this scheme.
The Central Government funding will be in the form of grant-in-aid, normally not more than the equity being put in by the implementing agency or 50% of the total equity in the project. (In case of projects located in North Eastern States and Himalayan States including J&K, this grant can be upto 80% of the total equity).The grant in aid shall, normally, be subject to a ceiling of Rs 20 Cr for each infrastructure project.
The implementing agencies shall provide details of the financing tie-ups for the projects which will be considered before approval of the project. Disbursement of funds shall be done after financial closure is achieved.