“Traders who are doing malpractices should be punished strongly but we would urge the government not to punish innocent exporters,” Gupta told PTI.
He was replying to a question about a recent move by the government to identify 5,106 “risky exporters” who have claimed goods and services tax refunds based on bogus invoices.
The government has stated that they would manually check their claims before issuing refunds. There are about 1.42 lakh exporters in the country.
The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has, however, assured genuine exporters that their refund claims would be processed in an automated environment and issued in a timely manner.
When asked whether the erring exporters are damaging the image of exporters in getting credit from banks, he said there are very few such traders and banks “should not treat all with the same brush”.
He said exporters are facing liquidity crunch and it is impacting the country’s outbound shipments.
“Only few people have misused the bank limits. Bank officials should meet exporters and address their issues. I would urge bankers to support small exporters who are creating large number of jobs and earning foreign exchange,” he said.
He suggested banks to extend credit at LIBOR plus one per cent as it will help in enhancing competitiveness of domestic players and boosting exports.
The country’s exports grew 9 per cent to USD 331 billion in 2018-19.