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Exports dip post GST, implementation of EDI at airport

WITH an annual export target of of 7,500 tonne, Tiruchy airport witnessed a slump in July to 460 tonne due to various factors. Reasons cited by exporters are the withdrawal of flights, suspension of exports due to the introduction of Electronic Data Interface (EDI) for the first time by customs authorities and the Goods and Services Tax (GST). Airport officials said the perishable commodities sector has been doing well with the demand for sweets, flowers, vegetables and fruits rising over the years in other countries.

"Cargo exports and imports have been rising in the recent years, which also brought revenues of at least 2 crore to the airport," said a senior official of AAI Cargo and Logistics Allied Services Company Ltd. On an average, the monthly target should be at 625 tonne a month. However, according to data obtained from Airports Authority of India (AAI), cargo exports have taken a hit this year, April saw a high of 631 tonne and July a low of 460 tonne. Most perishable commodities were sent to Dubai, Doha, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Colombo and Maldives.

Exporters said the cancellation of flights to Singapore for a brief period in July and the introduction of EDI at Tiruchy airport have led to a slump in exports. "The EDI facility meant there were no exports on the first day of registration of exporters into the system. Due to this, cargos could not be put on to flights," said SA Sayeed, a leading export-er and president of the Courier Operators Association. The inte-gration of Tigerair with Scoot, GST and EDI all pushed down the exports from Tiruchy airport.

The EDI facility meant there were no exports on the first day of registration of exporters. Hence, cargo could not be booked Sources in Exporters' Association

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