THE Department of Commerce comes under the Ministry of Industry and Commerce. The
mandate of the Department of Commerce is regulation, development and promotion of India’s
international trade and commerce through formulation of appropriate international trade and
commercial policy and implementation of the various provisions thereof. The basic role of the
Department is to accelerated growth of international trade. The Department formulates,
implements and monitors the Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) which provides the basic framework of
policy and strategy to be followed for promoting exports and trade. Besides, the Department is
also entrusted with responsibilities relating to multilateral and bilateral commercial relations,
Special Economic Zones, state trading, export promotion and trade facilitation, and development
and regulation of certain export oriented industries and commodities.
The long-term vision of the Department is to make India a major player in the world trade
by 2020 and assume a role of leadership in the international trade organizations commensurate
with India’s growing importance. The medium term vision is to double India’s exports of goods
and services by 2017-18 over the level of 2008-09 with a long-term objective of doubling India’s
share in global trade.
Relevant Website: www.commerce.gov.in
The global crisis produced a wide-ranging yet differentiated impact across which included
economic slowdown and contraction in world trade. However, the latest number from WTO now
points towards healthy prospects for global trade. The estimate for growth in world merchandise
trade volume in 2017 was raised to 3.6 per cent. The previous estimate for 2017 was 2.4 per cent.
For 2017 trade growth is placed within a range from 3.2 per cent to 3.9 per cent (WTO, 2017).
As per the WTO September 2017 press release, stronger than expected growth is driven by Asia
and North America, where import demand is recovering from weak results in 2016. Trade
growth should moderate to 3.2 per cent in 2018, within a range from 1.4 to 4.4 per cent, as global
GDP growth remains stable. Recovery could be undermined by downside risks, including trade
policy measures, monetary tightening, geopolitical tensions and costly natural disasters. India is
projected to grow at the rate of 7.4 per cent in 2018 thus becoming the fastest growing economy
in the world (IMF, 2018). As per the estimates of the International Monetary Fund (IMF, January
2018), the global economic activity continues to firm up. Global growth, which in 2016 was the
weakest since the global financial crisis at 3.2 per cent, is projected at 3.9 per cent in 2018 and
2019. Growth is projected to rise in emerging market and developing economies, supported by
improved external factors—a benign global financial environment and a recovery in advanced
economies. Growth in China and other parts of emerging Asia remains strong.
Current Focus Areas
Given this positive trajectory of growth, so far as, the export sector is concerned, there are