India will soon roll out a National Logistics Policy aimed at bringing down logistics cost, Union Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal reiterated while speaking at the Asia Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum 2019 in New Delhi.
He said the efforts are on to link the multiple modes of transport by working alongside with ministries of railways, ports and road and shipping, airline and road transport industries.
Only a collective effort will bring down the logistics cost effectively to less than 14%. It was for the first-time forum had organised its event in India. He said this collective effort along with more transparency will help bring down logistics costs to more affordable levels and help India’s exports become more competitive. Commerce ministry, ADB, CII and UN-ESCAP were the joint event organisers.
Goyal said that the implementation of GST in India has shown significant results particularly in terms of bringing down travel time to long distances through road transport with entry points becoming seamless (very few check posts).
And now we have competition between road transport and railways. “This is the kind of competitive spirit which will bring down logistics cost and encourage Railways to be far more efficient”, Goyal said.
He said that the National Committee on trade facilitation is working on 76 specific action points to make trade facilitation a reality. These action points on trade facilitation are being monitored at the highest level, he said. Goyal also said that trade facilitation will find an important role in the new free trade agreements that India is currently negotiating and would enter into in the coming days.
Urging the industry to come forward he said, “It will be very difficult for the Government and Bureaucrats alone to device the best of mechanisms. Ultimately it is stakeholders on the ground who can best advise us as to how we should move forward”, he said.
Goyal said that India is willing to look at international trade barriers, so as to eliminate or simplify if they are causing unfair disadvantage to international trade. He highlighted several countries were able to stall India’s services exports through trade barriers.