Market Access Initiative


Market Access Initiative (MAl) Scheme is an Export Promotion Scheme envisaged to act as catalyst to promote India’s exports on a sustained basis, during the 10th five year Plan. The scheme is devised on focus product- focus country approach basis to evolve specific strategy for specific market and specific product through market studies / survey Assistance would be provided to Export Promotion Organizations/ Trade Promotion Organizations / Exporters etc for enhancement of export through accessing new markets or through increasing the share in the existing markets Under the Scheme the level of assistance for each eligible activities has been fixed.

1.        SCOPE

Following activities will be eligible for financial assistance under the Scheme

*   To identify the priorities of research relevant to the Department of Commerce and to sponsor research studies consistent with the priorities.

*   WTO Studies for evolving WTO compatible strategy;

*   To support EPCs / Trade Promotion Organisations in undertaking market studies / survey for evolving the proper strategy

*   To support the marketing projects abroad on focus product focus country approach basis. Under the marketing projects the following activities will be funded:

(a)        Opening of Showrooms

(b)        Opening of Warehouses

(c)        Display in international departmental stores

(d)        Publicity Campaign and Brand Promotion

(e)        Participation in Trade Fairs, etc., abroad .

(i)         Research and Product Development

(g)        Reverse visits of the prominent buyers etc. from the project focus countries

*   Export Potential Survey of the States;

*   Registration charges for product registration abroad for pharmaceuticals, bio-technology and agro-chemicals;

*   Testing charges for engineering products abroad;

*   To support Cottage and handicrafts units;

*   To support Recognized associations in industrial clusters for marketing abroad

2.   Eligible Agencies

       Under the Scheme, the financial assistance may be given to:

       Departments of Central Government and organizations of Central/State Governments

*   Export Promotion Councils

*   Registered Trade Promotion Organizations

*   Commodity Boards

*   Apex Trade Bodies recognized under EXIM-Policy of Government of India .

*   .Recognized Industrial clusters

*   Exporters (For testing charges of engineering products abroad and registration charges of pharmaceuticals, bio-technology and agro-chemicals),

3.   Criteria for Sanction

* Market Access Initiative (MAl) Scheme is based on Focus country-product approach and the concerned EPCs Trade / Promotion Organizations etc. would formulate a comprehensive project for market access on the basis of Focus-Country and’ Focus -Product. There should be a single project for a particular product for a particular market for the period of 2-3 years so as to get the maximum result.

*  The proposal should not duplicate the efforts of any existing Organization in the same field

* The assistance under the Scheme for activities under the project will not be provided for which the assistance under   MDA have already been sanctioned.

* The funding for the project will be on cost-sharing basis. However, the Empowered Committee may consider for enhancement or curtailment of level of assistance on the merit of the project.

4.    Scrutiny and Sanctions

*   There shall be an Empowered Committee, which will consider and approve the proposals. The committee will also monitor the implementation of the sanctioned proposals.

*   The approval for sanction of the funds for approved projects will be obtained from the competent authority as specified by Ministry of Finance

*   The composition of the Empowered Committee will be as under:

*   Commerce Secretary                                                                -Chairman

*   Chairman, ITPO                                                                       -Member

*   Addl. Secy. & Financial Advisor, DOC                                    -Member

*   Director General, Foreign Trade                                               -Member         

*   Director General, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade                    -Member

*   Representative of Secretary, MEA                                            -Member

*   Representative of Planning Commission                                     -Member

*   Economic Adviser, Department of Commerce                           -Member

*   Adviser Economic, Department of Commerce                           -Member

*   A representative from the Ministry of Small Scale Industries       -Member

*  Joint Secretary, Administrative Division, Department

        of  Commerce, dealing with Concerned EPC /

     Commodity Boards.                                                                  -Member

*   A representative from the Department, which

                                    is dealing with the subject (goods or services)

                                    brought before the EC for funding support                                 -Member

*   JS, In-charge of the Scheme,

       Department of Commerce                                                         -Convener

                              The Committee would meet as and when required.

*   The representative of the organization. Proposing / sponsoring the proposals may be invited to the meeting of Empowered Committee; if required.

*   E&MDA Division, Deptt. of Commerce will co-ordinate the work related to the Committee and liaise will-EPC’s / TPO etc. for release of the sanctioned funds.

*   Payment made under the Scheme will be subject to audit by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India as also by other means as deemed fit by the Government of 1ndia.

*   Government of India will cause physical verification and other such enquiry as deemed fit, of the projects sanctioned under the Scheme.

5.   Submission of the Proposal

*   The project proposal should be specific with related details. All aspects related to projects should invariably be supported by data surveys. The projected benefits in both qualitative and quantitative terms in future should also be indicated.

*   The projects consisting of eligible activities under the scheme would be forwarded to E&MDA Division, Deptt. of Commerce by concerned EPCs / Trade Promotion Organizations etc. through concerned administrative divisional deptt.1 Ministries, alongwith; their specific recommendations.

*   The recognized Industrial clusters will forward their project through concerned EPCs.

*   The project proposal should be accompanied by an executive summary as per annexure- I

*   The proposals received one month ahead of the particular meeting of the Empowered Committee will only be considered in that particular meeting.

              6.  Details of approved purposes for the scheme and level of assistance.

6.1    Market Study

Assistance would be provided for undertaking a market study of a particular market(s) for a particular product to have in depth analysis and to evolve a proper marketing strategy for greater market access as per the needs of that particular market. Professional consultants will be employed to undertake marketing studies and Indian Missions would be associated with such studies. Such studies could be approved as a first step of a marketing project, the findings/ recommendations of, which would make a base for further activities to be taken for greater market access. The concerned EPCs / Organisation will ensure the involvement of consultant appointed for surveys/studies during the execution of the project also for smooth implementation.

Level of assistance:   For the market studies the assistance of 75% of the total cost would be provided under” the Scheme and the rest i.e. 25% would be borne by the concerned organization. However, for the studies assigned by the D / Commerce for the cause of export promotion, 100% assistance would be provided. The assistance for studies would be subject to the ceiling of Rs.75.00 lakh / each study.

6.2       Opening of Showrooms and Warehouses

Showrooms / Warehouses would be set-up for identified products at identified centers identified on the basis of marketing studies j survey in leased or rental accommodation.

Level of assistance: Under the Scheme 75%, 50% and 25% of leasing / rental charges in the first, second and the third year respectively would be provided as assistance. A ceiling of Rs. 50.00 lakh would be for each market / product per annum.

6. 3      Display in International Departmental Stores

Tie up with local distributors and major stores shall be used as a tool for promoting particular product (s). The International Departmental Stores would be identified on the basis of marketing studies / survey.

Level of assistance: Under the Scheme 50% of rental charges of display space would be provided as assistance subject to the ceiling of Rs. 50.00 lakh per annum /each product.

6.4 Publicity Campaign

Intensive publicity campaigns for identified product/ products in the identified market through various means would help in creating space for Indian products in international markets.

Level of assistance: Assistance would be provided on matching basis (50:50) for two years in a particular market subject to the ceiling of Rs.50.00 lakh per annum/per EPC/ per market. The assistance can be continued for the third year after review.

6.5 Participation in Trade Fairs. BSMs etc.:

Under the Scheme the assistance would be provided for participation in trade fairs / exhibitions at identified potential places abroad on Focus Country-Product basis. Participation in such fairs / exhibitions will normally be part of a comprehensive strategy .To maximize the benefits such efforts should be linked with effective publicity campaign, seminars, buyer-seller meets etc. These activities will be coordinated by the Export Promotion Councils.

Level of Assistance: 2/ 3rd  of the actual expenditure. The expenditure on TA/DA would be met by each participant. The assistance would be subject to the ceiling of Rs.50.00 lakh for each fair .

6.6 Assistance to reverse visits of the prominent buyers, Trade Journal:

Under the Scheme assistance to reverse visits of the prominent buyers, journalists/ editor of trade journals and representative of leading buying houses from the project focus countries for visiting important trade fairs/ exhibitions/ BSMs/ Seminars -and to visits important units; in India would be provided to EPCs.

Level of assistance: 2/ 3rd of the total approved expenditure. The following sub-components would be covered:

*   Venue Cost

*   Publicity cost for the event

*   Cost of the catalogues and other material .Translation and Interpreters’ charges

*   Any other component approved by the Empowered Committee

Air travel cost in the economy / excursion class only would be financed 100%. The foreign visitors would be meeting their own boarding lodging expenses. The EC would decide a fixed allocation for the activities each year.

6. 7 Research and Product Development.

Selected exporters Export Promotion Councils (EPCs)j Trade Promotion Organizations would be assisted in modernizing and upgrading the identified products as per the needs of the specific markets. This may be considered as a separate proposal or as a component of the approved project under the scheme for the assistance. The concerned EPCs etc. would act as coordinator.

Level of Assistance: 25% of the total approved cost subject to the ceiling of Rs. 50.00 lakh for each product, would be borne by the Scheme and the balance 75% by the concerned EPCs  / Exporters / TPOs.

6.8 Export Potential Survey of the States :

The scheme would supplement the State Governments in .carrying out export potential survey of the

States for identified product groups to evolve market related strategy for promoting exports of the identified product groups from the State. The concerned EPC would be coordinating agency for such survey.

Level of Assistance: 50% of the cost of Survey subject to the ceiling of Rs. 50.00 lakh, would be funded under the Scheme. The rest 50% would be borne by the State Government.

6.9 Registration charges for product registration abroad for pharmaceuticals, bio technology and agro-chemicals :

Under the Scheme assistance will be provided on reimbursement basis for registration charges paid by an Indian exporter of pharmaceuticals, bio-technology and agro- chemical products. For getting assistance an exporter is required to send their request through concerned EPC attaching therewith a certificate from the concerned Indian mission certifying the amount paid towards registration charges. Preferences shall be given to the small and medium entrepreneurs.

Level of Assistance: For registration charges of these products assistance under the Scheme would be 50% of the registration charge subject to a ceiling of Rs. 5.00 lakh for each registration. An exporter can apply for five registrations in a year and the total ceiling for each exporter shall beRs.25.00 lakh per annum.

6.10    Testing charges for engineering products abroad.:

An exporter can apply through concerned EPC for getting assistance. on reimbursement basis. A certificate from the concerned Indian Mission certifying the amount paid for testing charges is a must. An exporter can apply maximum for five testing charges in respect of five products or destinations per annum. Preferences can be given to the small and medium entrepreneurs.

Level of Assistance :  Under the Scheme the assistance at the rate of 50% of the testing charges subject to a maximum ceiling of Rs. 1.00 lakh for each testing would be provided. Preferences shall be given to the small and medium entrepreneurs. An exporter can apply for five tests in a year and the total ceiling for each exporter would be Rs.5.00 lakh per annum.

6.11     Assistance to Cottage and handicrafts units:

For providing assistance the cottage and handicrafts units the funds shall be earmarked on annual basis for the eligible activities under the Scheme. In addition to other eligible activities the assistance would also be provided for developing web-site for virtual exhibition @ 75% of the total approved cost. Preferences shall be given to the small and medium entrepreneur in allocation of funds.

Level of Assistance: The assistance to these sectors would be @ 90%, 75% and 50% wherever assistance .@- of 75% or 2/3rd , 50% and 25% is prescribed in normal course.

6.12 Studies on WTO related matters :

Under the Scheme Rs. 1.00 Crore per year has been earmarked to assist WTO related studies. Such studies would be undertaken on the recommendation of the Committee constituted in the department for this purpose.

Level of Assistance:  Assistance would be provided on 100% basis.

6.13  Project / Study which further the objective of the Scheme

Financial assistance to any project / Study which the Empowered Committee in its deliberation feels would further the objectives of the Scheme would be provided.

Level of Assistance:  The level of assistance would be decided by Empowered Committee. The assistance would be restricted to 50% of the project cost “subject to’ maximum of Rs.50.00 lakh in each case.” (However, this clause is under consideration for giving relaxing power to EC by competent authority).

6.14  Assistance to Industrial Clusters

The funds shall be provided through EPC on the prescribed scale for the activities such as Market study, participation in trade fairs etc. abroad, opening of warehouse & showroom, display in imitational store and publicity.

7. Changes in Approved Projects :

No changes will be made therein even if no additional costs are involved unless the prior approval of the Department has been obtained.

II. Monitoring and Review:

*   The EPCs/ TPOs shall submit a quarterly report in the prescribed format as given at annexure- II. This form will be used to review the progress of utilisation of the funds released and also the basis for further release of funds by the Ministry.

*   The Empowered Committee shall periodically review the progress of the scheme and will take steps to ensure achievements of the objectives of the scheme.

*   E&MDA Division will act as secretariat for the Scheme and do physical verification from time to time for proper utilisation of funds and implementation of the projects. A team of officers for this purpose would be constituted by E&MDA Division.



(Where necessary enclose a detailed write up)

1.Name of Organisation ./EPC 
2.Name of Project / Study for which MAI assistance is requested. 
3Whether it is based on Focus country product basis 
3.1If Yes, Name of Country/countries and in case more than one country is to be covered whether the markets are similar in nature. 
3.2If No, give justification for taking it up under the Scheme. 
4.Whether the project is base on findings of any study / survey.  If not the basis / grounds on which the project is prepared. 
4.1If Yes, name of the organisation, which undertook the study/survey.  A copy of the summary of report alongwith findings/recommendations should be enclosed. 
4.2If No, attach a brief justification for not based on the study / survey. 
5.Whether the project would be taken up by the organisation / EPC itself.  If not, give details about implementing agencies along with the reasons why the project is not being taken up by the EPC / TPOs itself etc. 
6.Whether financial assistance has been taken earlier for such projects, under MAI/MDA or from any other Scheme of Government of India/States. 
6.1If yes, the details thereof 
7Period during which the project is to be undertaken   
8Proposed activities to be undertaken under the project1 2 3 4
9.The total cost of the project-year-wise 
10The level of assistance sought under MAI year-wise for each activity. 
11Likely benefits after completion of the project. 


Report for the Quarter ending on ……… for the project approved under MAI Scheme of Deptt. Of Commerce, Government of India.

Name of the EPC/TPOs:

Name of the Project:

Date of Approval

S. No.Approve activities under the ProjectAmount spent on each activity upto this quarterApproved amount and pattern of funding-activitywise (in Rs.)Whether the progress is made as per the proposal *If not the reasons therofRemarks *

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