New Delhi: In view of COVID-19 pandemic, the Central government today extended Foreign Trade Policy 2015-2020 for 6 months till September 2021. The government also extended Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) 1.0 and 2.0 upto June 30, 2021; and time for Intimation of Aadhaar and Certain Other Time Limits upto June 30, 2021.
Extending the FTP today, the Union Commerce and Industry Ministry today informed that the present Policy which came into force on April 1, 2015, was for 5 years and was extended thereafter upto March 31, 2021. “In view of the unprecedented situation arising out of the pandemic Novel COVID-19, which is persisting, the Government has decided to continue benefits under various export promotion schemes by extending existing Foreign Trade Policy by another six months i.e. up to 30th September, 2021 which will provide continuity in the policy regime. Similar extension is made in the related procedures, by extending validity of HandBook of Procedures,” the Ministry stated.
Exemption from payment of IGST and Compensation Cess on the imports made under Advance/EPCG Authorisations and by EOUs have also been extended up to September 30, 2021. Similarly, validity period of the Status Holder Certificates is also extended. This will enable the Status Holders to continue to avail the specified facilities/benefits.
A notification for extending the Foreign Trade Policy 2015-20 and a Public Notice for extending the validity of the existing Handbook of Procedures 2015-20 has been issued today, the Ministry stated.
The Union Finance Ministry, meanwhile, in recognition of the continuing adverse impact of COVID-19 pandemic on certain service sectors,extended the scope of Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) through introduction of ECLGS 3.0 to cover business enterprises in Hospitality, Travel & Tourism, Leisure & Sporting sectors which had, as on 29.02.2020, total credit outstanding not exceeding Rs. 500 crore and overdues, if any, were for 60 days or less, on that date i.e. February 29, 2020.
ECLGS 3.0 would involve extension of credit of upto 40% of total credit outstanding across all lending institutions as on 29.02.2020. The tenor of loans granted under ECLGS 3.0 shall be 6 years including moratorium period of 2 years.
Further, the validity of ECLGS i.e. ECLGS 1.0, ECLGS 2.0 & ECLGS 3.0 have been extended upto 30.06.2021 or till guarantees for an amount of Rs. 3 lakh crore are issued. Last date of disbursement under the scheme has been extended to 30.09.2021.
The modifications introduced in the scheme, while providing an incentive to MLIs to enable availability of additional funding facility to the eligible beneficiaries will go a long way in contributing to economic revival, protecting jobs, and creating conducive environment for employment generation.
The revised operational guidelines in this regard shall be issued by National Credit Guarantee Trustee Company Ltd (NCGTC).
The Finance Ministry also extended certain time limits specified under the various tax and Benami laws by the Taxation and Other Laws (Relaxation and Amendment of Certain Provisions) Act, 2020 and subsequent notifications issued under this Act.
The extended last date for intimating Aadhaar number under the Income-tax Act, 1961 (the Act) for the purposes of linking Aadhaar with PAN is March 31, 2021. The Ministry said in view of the representations received from taxpayers that the last date for intimating the Aadhaar number may further be extended in the wake of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, the Central Government issued notification today extending the last date for the intimation of Aadhaar number and linking thereof with PAN to June 30, 2021. The said notification also extended time-limits for issue of notice under section 148 of the Act, passing of consequential order for direction issued by the Dispute Resolution Panel (DRP) and processing of equalisation levy statements to April, 30, 2021.
– global bihari bureau