The India – Australia Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (ECTA) has been ratified by the Australian Parliament on November 22nd 2022. The two Countries have signed the ECTA in the month of April 2022 and the trade deal will now come into effect on December 2022. Under the India – Australia ECTA, duties on 100% tariff lines will be eliminated by Australia, covering 6,000 broad sectors. Meanwhile, India’s tariffs on 90% of Australian goods exports, including meat, wool, cotton, seafood, nuts, and avocados, will be removed. In addition to removing duties, the ECTA also provides for job creation in India, increased investments from Australia to India, and post-study work visas for Indians in Australia.
The Honorable Prime Minister of India, Shri. Narendra Modi launched the New National Logistics Policy on 17th September 2022. The objective of this policy is to ensure quick last mile delivery, end transport-related challenges, save time and money of the manufacturers, prevent wastage of the agro-products. The Prime Minister reiterated that schemes like Sagarmala, Bharatmala, expedited the work of Dedicated Freight Corridors to improve logistics connectivity for systematic infrastructure development. Shri Modi pointed out that the total capacity of Indian ports has increased significantly and the average turn-around time of container vessels has come down from 44 hours to 26 hours. For promoting export, 40 air cargo terminals have been constructed. 30 airports have been provided cold-storage facilities. 35 multimodal hubs are coming up in the country. “Through waterways, we can do eco-friendly and cost-effective transportation, for this many new waterways are also being built in the country”, the Prime Minister added. He also mentioned Kisan Rail and Kisan Udan experiments during the Corona time. Today 60 airports have the facility of Krishi Udan.
(An article written on the National Logistics Policy (NLP) by Mr. Rizwan Soomar, CEO & MD, DP World Subcontinent is included in this newsletter.)
India becoming self-reliant is everywhere. India is setting big export targets and is also fulfilling them. The notion that India is emerging as a manufacturing hub, is stabilizing in the mind of the world. If we study the PLI scheme we will find that the world has accepted it.
Registering a growth of 26% on an annual basis, auto retails in November 2022 clocked record high numbers. Around 23.80 lakh units were sold in November this year, compared to 18.93 lakh units in November 2021 and 23.44 lakh units in November 2019, a pre Covid year.
All categories of automobiles saw growth in November, data shows Two-wheelers, Three-wheelers, passenger vehicles, tractors and commercial vehicles each saw a growth of 24%, 80%, 21%, 57%, and 33% respectively.
|Category||November 2022||November 2021||YoY % (2021)||November 2019||YoY% (2019)|
|2W||18.48 lakh||14.95 lakh||23.61%||18.64 lakh||-0.86%|
|PVs||3.01 lakh||2.48 lakh||21.31%||2.86 lakh||5.12%|
|Total||23.80 lakh||18.93 lakh||25.71%||23.45 lakh||1.52%|
(Data Source FADA)
India Today awarded Kerala, for the state’s best performance in the health tourism sector. Kerala’s excellent work in the field of public health has made Kerala award-worthy in the health sector. Kerala’s notable interventions in post-Covid tourism made it worthy of the award in the tourism sector. Kerala bagged the award for the best-performing state in the field of tourism with 90.5 points.
The new policy, coming after a gap of four years, focuses on the State’s traditional sectors as well as the sunrise sectors including Artificial Intelligence, hi-tech farming, value added rubber products, medical equipment, biotechnology, graphene, electric vehicles, and robotics. The new Kerala Industrial & Commercial Policy 2023-2028 aims to foster a conducive and sustainable industrial ecosystem that brings about investment and innovation. The following 7 policy focus pillars are identified to attain the objective: Fostering Entrepreneurship; Enabling Infrastructure; Being Hi-Tech; Building Futuristic Skillsets for employment; Supportive Business Environment; Enhancing “Kerala” Brand Equity; Building Sectoral Ecosystems.
Moving on as part of the Chamber’s fourth meeting of the 7th edition of the CEO Forum networking breakfast meeting 2022 held on Saturday 15 October 2022 at Hotel Crowne Plaza, Kochi. The Speaker of the session was Mr. Radhakrishnan B. Menon, Former Executive Director – HR, Cadbury India. Mr. Menon lectured on the topic “Enabling Good Growth in Organizations”. In this session Mr. Menon showcased different case studies of emerging startup companies, as well as well-established companies and their different strategies implemented to develop good growth in organization. The session was well received by the audience and we had closed to 40 delegates for this session.
Chamber also conducted a certificate workshop on “Employee Development for leaders”. on Thursday, 27 October 2022 at Hotel Avenue Regent, M.G. Road, Kochi. This workshop was specially designed for HRs, Senior Managers and Team Leaders focusing on to develop employee performance and efficiency. The speaker of this session was Mr. R N Elangovan, who was the former Group Manager – Learning & Development of Titan Corporate Office and has 32 years of vast experience in learning and Development. This session included lots of fun, Games, Team Interaction and learning.
The Fifth meeting of the 7th edition of the CEO Forum networking breakfast meeting 2022 held on Saturday 12 November 2022 at Hotel Crowne Plaza, Kochi. The Guest Speaker of the session Dr. Sujit Vasudevan, Senior Consultant Physician at Ojus Clinic lectured on the topic “Health Beats Wealth”. The session was an eye opening as Dr. Vasudevan covered several misconceptions about lifestyle diseases and how one should prevent it. The session was very informative and we had 35 delegates attended this session.
National Logistics Policy was announced in the month of September 2022 by our Hon. Prime Minister. The Chamber Conducted a Panel Discussion on “New National Logistics Policy 2022” on Saturday 19 November 2022 at Le Meridien, Kochi. Sri. N. Sivasailam IAS (Retd), Former Special Secretary (Logistics), Government of India and Sri. Pradeep Panicker President & Chief Executive Officer of GMR (Hyderabad) International Airport Ltd were the guest speakers. The Session focused on the background of policy and its impact on industries.
Mr. Sivasailam during his address emphasized on making Cochin Port as a Gateway to India, where he mentioned about the Cochin Port’s Economic advantage over Colombo port on transshipment cost. He clarified on the objectives of the New National Logistics Policy and the integration of businesses with block chain technology. The new logistic policy aims to cut the cost of logistics below 10% and focuses on integration, modernization and standardization. Mr. Sivasailam discussed about the background of the policy and Mr Panicker spoke about it’s impact on industries. Mr. Pradeep Panicker highlighted the factors affecting the logistics in India and mentioned the target to be achieved by logistic sector by 2030, where he stressed about cutting of logistics cost to global practices of 8%. He also highlighted that the logistic sector will facilitate a 10% decrease in indirect logistics costs leading to a growth of 5-8% in exports.
The Cochin Chamber organised a discussion on draft Kerala industrial policy with Sri. P. Rajeeve , Hon’ble minister for Industries, Law and Coir, at Chamber Hall, Willingdon Island, Kochi on Tuesday, 29 November 2022. The Session focused on seeking industrial policy representations and suggestions from different sectors.
Hon’ble minister emphasized on propagating positive aspects of state Business globally. He mentioned that the year 2022-23 is recognized as Enterprise year, where government targeted the registration of 1 Lakh enterprise and succeeded in registering 94,322 MSMEs accounting for 5000 Crore of investment and 2 lakh employee generations in state. Minister clarified that as per the new policy, for an enterprise having net worth above 50 Crores, all license are given within 7 days. Moreover, an option to obtain “Composite License”, which is a compilation of the licenses with a single online application, is also launched by the department. He also mentioned Private Industrial Estate Scheme 2022- where any partnership firm, company, co-operative or charitable society can apply for private Industrial estate venture. Minimum 10 acres of land is required out of which 5 acres envisaged from Standard Design Factory (SDF). The land enlisted in green belt, forest, ecologically weak should not be taken for consideration. Government will extend an assistance of Rs. 30 lakhs per acre subject to a maximum of Rs. 3 crores as reimbursement towards building infrastructure facilities such as electricity, water, road, drainage etc. The application may submit in Form No. 1 before the Director of Industries and Commerce and the same will be forwarded to the committee of Government secretaries of related departments. The committee will take a decision in this regard within 30 days.
Hon’ble minister also took representation from different sectors who were for a thriving business culture in Kerala. They advocated reduction in timeframe for issuing clearances for commencement of businesses, reduction in penalties and publicize the industrial law reforms expert committee report, levy in stamp duty to 2% for organization mergers and closures and initiatives to develop local ports of state to promote water way logistics were discussed.
The Chamber Representation on the draft Kerala Industrial & Commercial Policy (2023-2028) has been handed over by Shri. P. M. Veeramani, President of Cochin Chamber to the Hon. Industries Minister.
(The Representation submitted to the Hon. Minister is included in this newsletter)
The Chamber submitted a Pre-Budget Memorandum to the Hon. Finance Minister of India on 4th November 2022, on Income tax with a request to consider the same while framing the proposals in the Finance Bill, 2022 for amendments to the Income Tax Act, 1961 and the Customs Act, 1962. We have also included the amendments required under other laws like Company Law & GST Law.
(The Pre-budget Memorandum submitted to the Hon. Finance Minister is included in this newsletter.)
Lastly, we also had Officials visited the Chamber from the Taipei World Trade Centre; and the Deputy Australian Consul Mr. David Eggleston from Australian Consulate discussing on improving trade links between the countries. A brief description about their visit is included in this newsletter.
Thank You, and Wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
Recent Union Cabinet Decision
- Cabinet approves new Scheme “Prime Minister’s Development Initiative for North East Region (PM-DevINE) for the remaining four years of the 15th Finance Commission from 2022-23 to 2025-26 : 10.2022
- Cabinet approves Development of Multipurpose Cargo (other than Container/Liquid) Berth Off Tuna Tekra at Gulf of Kutch at Kandla on Build, Operate and Transfer under Public Private Partnership Mode : 10.2022
- Cabinet approves development of Container Terminal at Tuna-Tekra, Deendayal Port on Build, Operate & Transfer (BOT) basis under Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) mode : 10.2022
- Cabinet approves Nutrient Based Subsidy rates for Phosphatic and Potassic fertilizers for Rabi season 2022-23 from 1st October, 2022 to 31st March, 2023 : 11.2022
- Cabinet approves naming of Greenfield Airport at Hollongi, Itanagar, the State Capital of Arunachal Pradesh as “Donyi Polo Airport, Itanagar” : 11.2022
- Cabinet approves Nutrient Based Subsidy rates for Phosphatic and Potassic fertilizers for Rabi season 2022-23 from 1st October, 2022 to 31st March, 2023 : 11.2022
- Cabinet approves signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between India and Denmark on cooperation in the field of Water Resources Development and Management : 11.2022
- Cabinet approves Mechanism for procurement of ethanol by Public Sector Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) under Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Programme – Revision of ethanol price for supply to Public Sector OMCs for Ethanol … : 11.2022
07th edition of Annual Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam Memorial Lecture- 06.01.2023
CEO FORUM Breakfast Meeting with Mr. Radhakrishnan B. Menon Former Executive Director – HR, Cadbury India – 15.10.2022
Certificate Workshop on Employee Development for Leaders – 27.10.2022
CEO FORUM Breakfast Meeting with Dr. Sujit Vasudevan, Senior Consultant Physician at Ojus Clinic – 12.11.2022
Discussion on the New National Logistics Policy 2022 – 19.11.2022
Interaction on Kerala Draft Industrial policy with Sri. P. Rajeeve , Hon’ble minister for Industries , Law and Choir Government of Kerala – 29.11.2022
CEO FORUM Breakfast Meeting with Mr. V. Lakshmikumaran, Founder and Managing Partner, Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan (L&S) – 16.12.2022
Visit of Foreign Dignitaries
Visit of officials from the Taipei World Trade Centre
Visit of the Deputy Australian Consul from Australian Consulate
Article on National Logistics Policy (NLP) from Mr. Rizwan Soomar, CEO and MD, DP World Subcontinent
The NLP will unlock Kerala’s powerful trade potential
The much-awaited National Logistics Policy was launched on September 17, 2022, that has succinctly laid down a clear roadmap for the development of the entire logistics ecosystem in India. It envisions economic progression for India by creating a multimodal infrastructure network that promotes seamless movement of goods, built on the pillars of technology, strategic coordinated action, and sustainability. Meticulous execution of the policy in the coming quarters will reap massive benefits for India in the long term, propelling it to be one of the leading logistics hubs in Asia.
I believe, Kerala too will benefit from the new policy immensely having already been categorized as one of the ‘fast movers’ in the Logistics Ease Across Different States (LEADS) 2022 index. The NLP is poised to create an enabling environment in the state’s logistics ecosystem, where all relevant stakeholders are expected to facilitate advancement of its logistical infrastructure.
Presently Kerala boasts a strong port infrastructure, with one major port – Cochin Port –and seventeen non-major ports. Cochin Port, among all major Indian ports is the closest to the International East West Shipping routes and boasts of extensive connectivity with South Tamil Nadu, South Karnataka through roads and South and Central India through railways. The NLP offers Kerala a unique opportunity to strengthen its export capacity by developing efficient cold storage and handling facilities for bulk grains and pulses, strategically located near point of procurement, at key cross-docking points such as ports, airports, and rail terminals.
As EXIM trade accelerates from Kerala in the coming years, the NLP will help increase the rate of infrastructural development in the logistics sector, leading to upgradation of existing major and minor ports as well as the construction of small ports and a mature Inland Waterways grid. The proposed technology related solutions in the policy, including improvement of ship turnaround time, smart enforcement via risk-based profiling, will usher in an era of port modernization in the state. Supply chain efficiencies such as monitoring of container dwell time at key ports will not only improve the availability of containers for shipping, but also enhance logistics service providers’ own planning capabilities.
In line with the state’s vision of energizing its production sectors and improving its service sectors as well, NLP will effectively complement Kerala’s Industrial Policy, which is expected to be finalized by 2023. The Draft Industrial Policy in its current form aims to foster entrepreneurship, enable infrastructure and readiness for Industrial Revolution 4.0, and enhance skilling. The NLP’s vision of a unified logistics supply chain will forge new linkages between various touchpoints in the manufacturing-to-consumption value chain in the state. The Sectoral Plans for Efficient Logistics (SPEL), which falls under the Comprehensive Logistics Action Plan (CLAP), also proposes specific interventions for sectors with high logistic costs as a part of overall production cost.
Hence, when actioned in tandem, both these policies, could improve logistical efficiencies, thereby reducing inputs costs of domestic businesses, especially MSMEs, and enhance their global and domestic reach. Similarly, cost benefits as well as other advancements in the ease of doing business resulting from the policy could be a big draw for major electronic manufacturing and ecommerce companies. It can give these businesses, which are highly desirable additions to the state economy, a strong business reason to invest in Kerala, thereby stimulating the overall investor confidence in the state.
The NLP also aligns effectively with Kerala’s commitment to sustainability. The state already enjoys the title of being the most sustainable transport system in the country. Last year, it committed to drafting an Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) policy designed to attract sustainable investments. The NLP furthers this aim by prompting value chain sustainability through various methods, such as sustainable packaging, adoption of electric vehicles and waste flow management.
The NLP will help strike the desirable balance of a favourable regulatory environment, cost-effective sustainable modes of shipment and other green outcomes for the state. Amidst India’s efforts to transition freight away from roads and towards railways and seas, we could see Kerala’s ports setting a sustainability benchmark by using greener energy solutions and generating greater value from waste.
It is important to view NLP as a part of a larger infrastructure and logistics transformation. The simultaneous implementation of various initiatives like PM Gati Shakti, Sagarmala, Bharatmala and Dedicated Freight Corridor project will get further coordinated direction under the policy. Its far-reaching ambit will encourage all stakeholders in the ecosystem to collaborate towards a vibrant logistics backbone in Kerala that can become a key enabler going forward.
Chamber Research Wing
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