To help exporting units tide over the impact of demonetisation, the Apparel Export Promotion Council has asked the government to increase withdrawal limits and relax rules for payment of statutory dues like PF, ESI and service tax for sometime. In order to facilitate transition of the readymade garment export industry towards digital payments and less cash usage, the council has shared key recommendations with the government, the exporters body said in a statement on Sunday.
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The council has suggested that exporting units may be allowed a higher threshold of cash withdrawal for making payments to artisans, loaders, purchases for developing new samples and for payment towards small freight amount. Availability of adequate cash should be made available at banks in key clusters.
The body has suggested that bank accounts of workers in RMG export sector should be opened on the basis of unique identity. The account should be maintained in Employees Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) in lieu of initiating a fresh KYC (Know Your Customer) requirement by the bank. Banks may be allowed to take PAN details of the employer instead of the employees wherever and whenever the situation demands it, it added.
It also said that the statutory payments made by the garment exporters towards discharge of PF/ESI/TDS/Service Tax should be relaxed for sometime. All statutory returns to Central / State Government should be allowed a grace period for submission.
Industry demands Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to notify general extension in the realization of export proceeds to 365 days on account of demonetisation, it said. The body also suggested that the deposit rate of interest should be increased, so that it encourages retention of credit balance in the books of accounts maintained by banks, rather than withdrawal of cash.