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DPIIT: Suggestions for creating an enabling e-commerce ecosystem

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On 09 march 2021, NASSCOM submitted a set of suggestions to the Department of Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), the nodal government department for the e-commerce industry, asking for government intervention in various ways in order to move forward in building an enabling ecosystem for the industry.

Our suggestions included the following:

  1. Facilitate Indian businesses to sell online

A. Create Infrastructure

  • Enabling policy environment to drive public and private investment in infrastructure development, such as, creation of warehouses, sorting centres, multimodal logistics networks (air, rail, road).
  • Creating communications infrastructure to support a strong digital backbone for the industry.
  • Creating logistics infrastructure for smooth delivery and returns, e.g., last mile connectivity.
  • Central government to facilitate discussions with state governments for creating infrastructure in a structured manner.
  • Encouraging state governments to adopt a common minimum agenda to facilitate e-commerce.

B. Support for MSMEs

  • Handholding support for digitisation and onboarding onto online platforms.
  • Incentives to offset digital marketing and branding costs to promote “Make in India”.
  • Enabling wider adoption of digital payments by MSMEs.
  • Tax incentives for setting up warehouses and data centre facilities.

C. Proactive role by state governments

  • Establish/identify manufacturing clusters; leverage One District One Product programme to promote targeted products through omnichannel retail.
  • Help in onboarding more sellers online through upskilling and training cells.
  • Adopt a common minimum agenda to facilitate e commerce.

D. Ease of Doing Business

  • Bring parity in GST thresholds for online and offline sellers.
  • Enable small businesses registered under composition scheme sellers to sell online.
  • No cancellation of PPoB registration for lack of traditional physical set up.
  • Digital invoices for transporters.
  • Effective roll out of the Code on Social Security Rules, to deliver desired benefits to gig workers in partnership with e-commerce platforms.

E. Stakeholder Involvement

  • Consult with industry stakeholders for development of e commerce ecosystem.
  • Include representation from e commerce industry on the Open Network for Digital Commerce Steering Committee set up in November 2020.


2. Facilitate e-commerce exports

  • Create delivery infrastructure, in terms of logistics solution through India Post which is low cost, fast and tracking-enabled; and designate Foreign Post Offices at all district headquarters.
  • e-Commerce Export Zones (EEZ): ‘one stop shop’ for storage, certification, testing, customs clearance, expedited processing of export incentives, GST ITC refunds etc.
  • Single Window clearance for exports: Create a single window clearance system Integrate Customs’ ICEGATE system with other systems (such as IEC by DGFT, EDPMS by RBI and GSTN).
  • Create awareness among MSMEs: Organisations entrusted to accelerate exports to create awareness on benefits of omnichannel retail e commerce exports for businesses and train on digital marketing, digitisation etc.
  • Dedicated customs clearance lanes for facilitating 100% mandatory online processing of customs clearances.


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