DGFT’s E-Commerce Drive: Fueling Export Readiness for MSMEs in 76 Districts

The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), an arm of the commerce and industry ministry, is looking to leverage e-commerce to make Indian micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in 76 districts export-ready.

With an aim to promote and enable MSMEs to explore international markets, the Union Commerce Ministry has been actively engaging in boosting e-commerce exports from the country.

Furthering this initiative, DGFT has entered into collaborations with various e-commerce platforms and other service providers, which will handhold and hold capacity-building and training sessions in the identified districts.

In a similar initiative on Thursday, the DGFT also penned down an agreement with global logistics service provider DHL.

During the signing of the MoU, commerce secretary Sunil Barthwal underscored the importance of the e-commerce ecosystem and the strides taken by India to create a digital infrastructure that could be leveraged to encourage MSMEs from rural India to connect to the world market.

Speaking about the collaboration, the director general of DGFT, Santosh Sarangi, said the objective of this collaboration was to introduce exporters and MSMEs to the digital commerce space so that they get an opportunity to export “Make in India” products, tap international customers, and overcome the challenges related to logistics while exporting through the e-commerce route.

“This partnership with the Government of India will further solidify DHL’s commitment to India and align with DHL’s Go Trade program to empower MSMEs in the global market,” John Pearson, global chief executive officer of DHL Express, said.

Under these collaborations, DGFT and DHL will bring together a team of knowledge experts to assist Indian exporters and MSMEs in the identified districts through handholding sessions and develop a start-up kit for first-time exporters wanting to go global.

In alignment with the Foreign Trade Policy 2023, the DGFT has entered into collaborations with Amazon India and Shiprocket, covering 20 and 16 districts, respectively.

These collaborations with e-commerce platforms and service providers have helped onboard new exporters, promote first-time exporters, and handhold MSME producers to become exporters through cross-border e-commerce sales under the District as Export Hub initiative, a government spokesperson said.

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