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Cabinet secretary Rajiv Gauba to check progress of PLI schemes this week

An empowered group of secretaries, headed by Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba, will conduct meetings over the next one week to review the progress of production-linked incentive (PLI) schemes that have been approved and notified over the past one year, for sectors such as pharmaceutical, electronics, telecommunications, among others.

“Officials will be closely looking at where we stand as far as the implementation of the PLI scheme is concerned. The number of applications for the scheme announced for the respective sectors could also be discussed,” said a senior official.

The PLI scheme was announced last year, with India trying to diversify supply chains amid tensions with China and the National Democratic Alliance-led government’s persistent efforts to become self-reliant through various initiatives. The scheme also aims at making domestic manufacturing globally competitive, create jobs, and boost exports.

In the Union Budget 2020-21, the finance ministry had already announced an outlay of Rs 1.97 trillion for the PLI schemes for 13 key sectors, including technology, textile, automobile, pharmaceutical, among others, for five years.

Of these, three schemes have been notified, while seven more have been approved by the Cabinet.

The meeting comes in the backdrop of companies, especially electronic manufacturers, requesting the government to relax the targets laid out due to disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. They have also sought a change in the base year from the current 2019-20.

The review meet is also expected to discuss extending the PLI scheme for various sectors to benefit micro, small and medium enterprises.

The official quoted earlier, however, said the relaxation of the terms and conditions are not on the cards yet.

NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant, Commerce Secretary Anup Wadhawan, Depart­ment for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade Secretary Giridhar Aramane, Revenue Secretary Tarun Bajaj, Economic Affairs Secretary Ajay Seth, and representatives from the ministries concerned — food processing industries, electronics and information technology, Department of Pharma­ceuticals, telecommunications, heavy industries, and new and renewable energy —will be also be present at the meeting, starting Monday. Business Standard

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