Minister of State for Commerce & Industry Ms Nirmala Sitharaman meeting the United States Trade Representative, Mr. Michael, in New Delhi recentlThe Commerce Ministry has prepared a long-term strategy to enter into the newly opened markets of Africa and ASEAN countries with a view to promote items with a large manufacturing base in India. Minister for Commerce Ms Nirmala Sitharaman said in the Rajya Sabha today that the focus of the strategy is to penetrate into the markets in Asia (including ASEAN), Africa and Latin America to strengthen our presence in newly opened up markets. At the same time our aim would be to deepen engagement in the older markets.

The focus sectors have been identified as pharmaceuticals, electronics, automobiles, computer and software based smart engineering, environmental products etc. Labour intensive leather, gems & jewellery and textile sectors have high value addition, and have been areas -of- strength. Product diversification in these sectors with high value-addition has been accorded high priority.

As per the latest available data for April-Sept 2014-15 the 10 top export items are: Petroleum products; Pearls, Precious, Semiprecious Stones; Gold and other precious metal jewellary; Drug formulations, biologicals; Iron and Steel; RMG Cotton including accessories; Products of Iron and Steel; Motor vehicle/cars; Ship, boat and floating structure; Aircraft, Spacecraft and parts.

Top ten destinations of Indian exports during this period are: USA, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, People’s Republic of China, Singapore, UK, Brazil, Germany, Netherland.

The long term vision of the government is to increase India’s exports of Merchandise and Services from present level of 464.1 billion USD (2013-14) to approximately 900 billion USD by 2018-19 (CAGR approximately 14%) and take India’s share of global exports to above 3%.

An aggressive product promotion strategy for high value items that have a strong manufacturing base is the main focus of the overall growth strategy. The core of the market strategy is to retain presence and market share in traditional markets, move up the value chain in providing export products in the developed countries’ markets; and open up new vistas, both in terms of markets and new products in these new markets. Strengthening efforts to build a brand image for important Indian exports, and promote a thrust for quality up-gradation.