The Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman launched a new scheme named Trade Infrastructure for Export Scheme (TIES) on March 15, 2017 for developing export linked infrastructure and boost the competitiveness of India’s shipments.
- Aim: TIES aims to bridge the infrastructure gap in India to ensure smoother movement of export cargo and also ensure quality standards and certification measures to promote outbound shipment.
- The scheme will have a total budgetary allocation of Rs 600 crore for three years with an annual outlay of Rs 200 crore.
- It will be implemented from April 1, 2017 and span from 2017-18 till 2019-20.
Salient Features of TIES
An inter-ministerial empowered committee under the chairmanship of commerce secretary Rita Teaotia has been constituted for sanctioning and monitoring of the project.
- The 10 member committee comprises of commerce secretary, DGFT, NITI Aayog CEO, joint secretaries from DIPP, Home Affairs Ministry and Ministry of Development of North East Region.
- TIES scheme will be implemented on participative basis. The focus of the scheme will not only be on creation of the infrastructure but also to make sure that it is professionally run and sustained.
- The scheme would provide assistance for setting up and upgradation of infrastructure projects with 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, Special Economic Zones (SEZ) and ports/airports cargo terminuses
- Besides, TIES would also consider the last and first mile connectivity projects related to export logistics.
- Under the scheme, priority would be given to the projects involving significant contribution by the implementing agency and bank financing for achieving financial closure.
- Projects which can be covered under sector specific schemes like leather, textiles, IT and electronics, and not related with exports will not be supported under TIES.
- The scheme also involves promotion of leveraging of funds from other sources including bank financing; no recurring costs of the land to be included and operating & maintenance costs to be met through pay and use charges.
- The scheme aims to address those gaps in infrastructure which are not addressed by any other scheme.
- Two states, Rajasthan and Karantaka, have already submitted project proposals under this scheme.
Financial Assistance Under the Scheme
TIES will replace the centrally sponsored scheme, Assistance to States for Development of Export Infrastructure and Allied Activities (ASIDE) Scheme, which was funded completely by the Centre.
- Under the scheme, five percent of the grant of Rs. 600 crore approved would be used for appraisal, review and monitoring.
- The cost of projects under TIES would be equally shared between the Centre and the states. However, for north-eastern and the Himalayan region states the Centre may bear 80 percent of the cost.
- 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 percent of the total equity in the project.
- The grant in aid shall normally be subject to a ceiling of Rs. 20 crore for each infrastructure project.
- The implementing agencies would 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.
- The central and state agencies, including Export Promotion Councils, Commodities Boards, SEZ authorities and apex trade bodies recognised under the EXIM policy of government; are eligible for financial support under this scheme.