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DGFT and Revenue Dept working on dedicated hubs to boost e-commerce exports

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NEW DELHI : In a bid to boost India’s e-commerce exports, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) is working with the Department of Revenue to establish designated e-commerce hubs across the country to streamline the process for online export shipments.

The country’s e-commerce exports currently stand at $ 2 billion as compared to China’s staggering $ 350 billion, according to industry sources.

The government aims at bridging the gap by establishing a supportive e-commerce ecosystem, they said. “A lot of streamlining is required in this regard. We are working with the Department of Revenue to have designated e-commerce hubs so that clearance of goods happens fast,” Director General of Foreign Trade Santosh Kumar Sarangi told.

He said these hubs will have facilities like dedicated customs and security checks, allowing cleared parcels to proceed through a green channel at airports, eliminating the need for further inspections.

This approach mirrors best practices observed in other countries, Sarangi said.

He also pointed out that the e-commerce hubs will be built and maintained by private entities, while the government will oversee security and customs clearances.

In addition to expediting clearances, the proposed hubs would offer warehousing facilities, returns processing, labelling, product testing, and repackaging services.

This public-private partnership aims at creating a robust infrastructure for efficient e-commerce exports, the official said.

These hubs could function similarly to bonded zones, facilitating e-commerce exports, said Ajay Sahai, Director General of the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO). A report estimated that with policy reorientation, India’s e-commerce exports could reach $ 350 billion by 2030.

Streamlining the export process through dedicated hubs is a crucial step in this direction, experts mentioned.

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