Government Revises TMA Scheme to Help Exporters
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The government revised the Transport and Marketing Assistance (TMA) scheme for specified agricultural products by increasing assistance rates and including dairy products in its scope. The government extended the TMA scheme by one more year to help agricultural product exporters meet the rising logistics and freight costs.

The TMA for specified agriculture products scheme aims to support the international marketing of agricultural produce, which helps promote brand recognition for Indian agricultural products in the overseas markets. It also provides assistance for the international component of freight, which helps mitigate the higher cost of export transportation of specified products due to trans-shipment. 

The government launched the TMA scheme in 2019 to boost the export of agricultural products to certain countries in North America and Europe. It was valid till March 2021, wherein the government reimbursed exporters a specific portion of the freight charges and assisted in marketing select agricultural produce.

The department of commerce revised the TMA scheme for the exports made after 1 April 2021, valid till March 2022. The revised scheme will not apply for the exports carried out till 31 March 2021, and the old TMA scheme will apply for such exports.

The revised TMA scheme covers dairy products, and they will be eligible for assistance under the scheme. The assistance rates under the revised TMA scheme are increased by 50% for exports by sea and 100% for exports by air.

The revised scheme will grant aid for exporters of specified farm products in the range of Rs.8,400 to Rs.35,700 for shipping out a regular container of goods, depending on the destination. Earlier, the range of aid for exporters of specified farm products was Rs.5,600 to Rs.23,800.

The revised scheme will extend an aid of Rs.1.4-7 per kg for exports by air as against 70 paise to Rs.3.5 under the old TMA scheme. Based on the proximity criterion, the highest assistance will be for exports to South America. The lowest assistance to exports will be to the ASEAN region (or the Far East for the refrigerated containers).

The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) will soon notify the procedure for obtaining assistance under the revised scheme. The revised TMA scheme will help Indian exports of agricultural products to meet the rising shipping costs. The revision of the TMA scheme is part of the government’s numerous long-term and short-term measures to help exporters tide over the increase in their shipping costs.

The revised TMA scheme has a broader scope by including dairy products and revised assistance by increasing the assistance rates for exports by sea and air. The extension of this scheme till March 2022 will provide aid and support to India’s farm exporters.

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For any clarifications/feedback on the topic, please contact the writer at mayashree.acharya@cleartax.in

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