Wednesday, 26 April, 2017
EPCH is an apex organization of trade and industry for promotion of handicrafts and is credited with organizing Asia's largest Handicrafts & Gifts Show.
MARKETING DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE (MDA) SCHEME OF MINISTRY OF COMMERCE & INDUSTRY, GOVT. OF INDIA TO ASSIST EXPORTERS FOR EXPORT PROMOTION ACTIVITIES BY PARTICIPATION IN EPC'S LED ACTIVITIES:
 
For scheme of Govt. of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan please refer to FAQ No.   24  & 25
   
A). FAQ FOR MDA Grant
   
Q 1. What is MDA?
Ans Marketing Development  Assistance (MDA)is a government grant available to exporters for their export promotion activities like participation in EPC led international Trade Fairs/Exhibitions/ trade delegations / BSMs abroad to explore new markets for export of their specific product(s) and commodities from India in the initial phase. The complete details of scheme are available in the guidelines. Please (click here).
   
Q 2. Is MDA grant available in case of direct participation?
Ans No, MDA is not available in case of direct participation
   
Q 3. Is MDA grant available for participation in domestic fairs? i.e., IHGF Spring & Autumn as well as other events organized by EPCH in India.
Ans No, MDA is only available for participation in the international fairs/exhibitions/BSMs held abroad if the participation is under the banner of EPCH/ITPO or FIEO by EPCH members.
   
Q 4. What is Annexure IV?
Ans Annexure IV is an application form to be filled by the selected participants who wish to apply for the MDA grant. The form is to be printed on the Company Letter head and is to be submitted in the Council duly stamped and signed. (Please click here for more details). Please (click here).
   
Q 5. Whether there is any condition/time limit to submit Annexure IV, before the departure for the event?
Ans The application form as per Annexure IV must be received in the concerned EPC/ITPO/FIEO with a minimum of 14 days clear advance notice excluding the date of receipt of application in the concerned office and the date of departure from the country.
   
Q 6. From where do we get application for MDA grant?
Ans One can either download the application form i.e., Annexure IV or can collect a copy in person from the MDA Department in EPCH.
   
Q 7. Who are eligible to avail MDA grant?
Ans Exporting companies (registered member of EPCH – if applying for the grant through the council) with a f.o.b. value of exports of Rs. 5 lacs (minimum requirement) and upto Rs. 30 crores (maximum limit) in the preceding year will be eligible for MDA assistance for participation in trade delegations / BSMs / fairs / exhibitions abroad to explore new markets for export of their specific product(s) and commodities from India in the initial phase. This will be subject to the condition that the exporter has completed 12 months membership with concerned EPC etc. and has filed annual returns with concerned EPC/organization regularly.
   
Q 8. In case a Company completes it's 12 months of membership in the Council on the date of it's departure for the event, is the company eligible for MDA grant?
Ans Yes, if a company completes 12 months of membership on the date of departure, it shall be eligible for MDA grant.
   
Q 9. Is the condition of 12 months completed membership is as per financial year?
Ans No, one should complete 12 months membership with the council from the date of grant of Membership and departure for participation in an event abroad to be eligible for the MDA grant.
   
Q 10. What is the minimum period of membership required in the Council to avail MDA grant?
Ans One should have completed 12 months membership with the council from the date of grant of Membership.
   
Q 11. We were Member of EPCH since its inception; however we did not pay our membership renewal fees for the previous financial year. Are we eligible for MDA grant by getting new membership?
Ans No, only members with regular and uninterrupted membership having completed 12 months membership are only eligible for MDA grant.
   
Q 12. Can one can participate in all the fairs organized by EPCs and FIEO/ITPO under MDA grant and claim grants for all the events so participated?
Ans No, as per MDA guidelines, this would be subject to an upper ceiling mentioned in the table below:-

Assistance would be permissible on travel expenses by air, in economy excursion class fair and/or charges of the built up furnished stall. This would, however, be subject to an upper ceiling mentioned in the table per tour.
S.No. Area/Sector No. of visits Maximum Financial Ceiling per event
1. Focus LAC 1 Rs. 2,50,000
2. FOCUS AFRICA including WANA (west Asia and North Africa) Countries 1 Rs. 2,00,000
3. FOCUS CIS 1 Rs. 2,00,000
4. FOCUS ASEAN + Australia & New Zealand 1 Rs. 2,00,000
5. General Areas 1 Rs. 1,50,000*

TOTAL

5 General Areas

However, for priority sectors, having large employment generation potential, viz.  Agriculture including food items, Handicrafts, Handlooms, Carpets, Leather & Minor Forest Produce including LAC, 2 (two) participations in General Areas would be admissible with the assistance of Rs. 2,00,000 for each participation. The exporters availing of assistance under this provision would, however, be in addition to these participations, shall be eligible for only any 2 Focus Area participations.
   
Q 13. Is there a limit to the number of MDA grants that can be availed in a financial year?
Ans Yes, as can be seen in table given:-
SNo. Area/Sector No. of visits
1. Focus LAC 1
2. FOCUS AFRICA including WANA (west Asia and North Africa) Countries 1
3. FOCUS CIS 1
4. FOCUS ASEAN + Australia & New Zealand 1
5. General Areas 1
TOTAL 5
Note:- Alternatively, a company can avail 2 grants for participation in the FOCUS Area and 2 grants for the General Area in a financial year.
   
Q 14. Which are the Focus Areas under MDA and General Area of participation?
Ans The detailed list of Countries covered under the Focus Areas under MDA can be checked from the following link. Please (click here).Apart from Focus Areas as can be seen, other countries are considered to be as General areas.
   
Q 15. What is the maximum limit of MDA grant available for a particular trade fair/event/activity?
Ans A maximum of three participations in a particular trade fair/event/activity would be eligible for MDA assistance and exporting companies after availing assistance three times including any previous participation for a particular trade fair/event/activity, a company shall have to participate in that trade fair/event/activity, if any, on self-finance basis.
   
Q 16. What is the maximum number of MDA grants available in the General Area in a financial year?
Ans A company can avail a maximum of 2 MDA grants in the General Area in one financial year.
   
Q 17. What is the maximum number of MDA grants available in the Focus Area in a financial year?
Ans A company can avail a maximum of 4 MDA grants in the Focus Area in one financial year. However, the company shall be able to avail only 1 grant for each of the Focus Area.
   
Q 18. What is the amount of MDA grant available for participation in a Trade Fair or Buyer Seller Meet (BSM)?
Ans
SNo. Area/Sector Maximum Financial Ceiling per event
1. Focus LAC Rs. 2,50,000
2. FOCUS AFRICA including West Asia & North Africa (WANA) Countries Rs. 2,00,000
3. FOCUS CIS Rs. 2,00,000
4. FOCUS ASEAN + Australia & New Zealand Rs. 2,00,000
5. General Areas Rs. 2,00,000
For EPC etc. led Trade Delegations / BSMs only air-fare by Economy Excursion class upto a maximum of Rs. 70,000 (Rs. 1,00,000 in case of Focus LAC) shall be permissible. For participation in Trade Fairs/Exhibitions reimbursement shall be permissible subject to ceilings mentioned in the column 4 in the above table.  
   
Q 19. Is it possible to avail MDA grant for the company in two different exhibition in a particular venue within the same period (dates), for example Hongkong Textiles & Houseware fairs which are held in the month of April every year during the same dates and in the same venue?
Ans Yes, it is permissible.
   
Q 20. Is it possible to avail MDA grant by a Parent company also for it's sister concern under the supervision of a single representative?
Ans No, two separate representatives holding Indian passport should be present on the occasion to man the booth.
   
Q 21. Can a company with a 'Nil' export performance get MDA benefits?
Ans No, a company with a 'Nil' export performance in previous year is not eligible for the MDA grant. Only companies with a f.o.b. value of exports of Rs. 5 lacs (minimum requirement) and upto Rs. 30 crores (maximum limit) in the preceding year or cumulative export performance of Rs 15 lakh in the preceding 3 years from the year in which MDA grant has been approved will be eligible for MDA assistance. It may once again please be noted that exporters having NIL Export performance in the preceding year will not be eligible for MDA grant.
   
Q 22. Whether EPCH members are eligible for MDA grant for participating in ITPO/FIEO organized activities?
Ans Yes,  as per Ministry of Commerce & Industry, GOI order vide letter No.2/1/2004-E&MDA(Part) dated 26-11-2007 FIEO and ITPO are eligible grantee organization for the purpose of reimbursement of MDA grant to the exporters who are also members of the other EPCs etc. and participating in the events organized/sponsored by FIEO/ITPO. However, the company shall be required to obtain a NOC from the Council for such participations.
   
Q 23. Who are eligible to represent a company in a trade fair/event/activity abroad and avail MDA grant?
Ans Assistance shall be available only if the journey has been performed by a Regular Employee/Director/Partner/Proprietor of the company.
   
Q 24. What are the export promotion scheme being provided by Rajasthan & Uttar Pradesh State Governments for export Promotion?
Ans Yes, Government of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh offer separate schemes for export promotion. For Details, please click on the following links:- Rajasthan http://rajind.rajasthan.gov.in/programmes_schemes.htm
Uttar Pradesh www.epbupindia.com
   
Q 25. Whether NOC is required for availing grant under the State Government Schemes?
Ans No, NOC is not required from EPCH for such participation.
   
   
B). FAQ FOR MDA CLAIM
Q 1. Time limit for submission of MDA claim?
Ans A claim to be deemed valid must be submitted within 90 days from the date of arrival in India.
   
Q 2. Is travel by Business Class reimbursed under the MDA grant?
Ans No, travel grant is only available for travel by Economy Excursion Class only. Under such cases, only equivalent fare is reimbursed.
   
Q 3. If two representatives attended the fair, both of them can avail MDA grant?
Ans Assistance (air ticket reimbursement) shall be available only for one representative equivalent to the fare of Economy Excursion Class.
   
Q 4. Is Travel Grant (Air Ticket Reimbursement) available in case of participation in trade fair/exhibition in General Area?
Ans MDA disbursement maximum of Rs.2,00,000/- is made for participation of General Area which includes Space Rent + Air Travel fare.
   
Q 5. What documents have to be submitted along with the Claim Forms for reimbursement of MDA grant?
Ans The following documents are required to be submitted with the MDA claim:-
  • Prescribed Claim Form (Annexure – VI) duly completed and authenticated on the company letterhead.
  •  Bill for payment and pre-receipt duly signed, stamped with Rs. 1 Revenue stamp.
  •  Undertakings & Declaration on company letterhead duly signed & stamped.
  • Legible photocopy of passport highlighting the entries about departure from and arrival in India and also the countries visited. In case passport does not have the arrival/departure dates regarding country visited, some documentary evidence such as hotel Bills, Boarding Pass, Lodging pass etc.
  • Self certified FOB value export figures during the last three financial years, year wise.
  • Details of past activities for same event with MDA assistance.
  • Brief report on the activity undertaken and achievements.
  • Certificate from the travel agent certifying the class of travel in Economy Excursion class.
  • Evidence of payment made for the stall rent in the form of Receipt from the fair authority or bank advice duly self-certified.
  • Original air ticket/ jacket used during the journey.
   
Q 6. If in case the Air Ticket/Jacket is misplaced or lost, what needs to be done?
Ans If Air Ticket/Jacket is misplaced or lost, a legible photocopy of the same along with a certificate from the airline indicating the following may be sent:
  • Name of the Traveler.
  • Ticket Number.
  •  Flight No.
  • Date of Departure from India.
  • Sectors/Countries Visited.
  • Class in which travelled.
  • Fare of economy excursion class for the Sector/countries visited.
   
Q 7. In case of absence of ITR, what needs to be done?
Ans A Chartered Accountant certified statement of Exports for the immediate preceding financial year (F. O. B.) value can be submitted along with the claim documents.
   
Q 8. Under what circumstances, the MDA grant can be denied to the applicant?
Ans If the company is in the negative list of the DGFT. The company should not be under investigation/charged/prosecuted/debarred/black listed under the Foreign Trade Policy of India or any other law relating to export and import business i.e., the DEL Status of Importer Exporter Code Number issued by DGFT/Jt. DGFT to the company should not be in the blacklist.
   
Q 9. Whether foreign passport holders/foreign nationals can avail MDA?
Ans No, if the company is represented by a Foreign Passport holder/Foreign national, it is not eligible to avail MDA grant as per Para 3 of MDA guidelines (Page No.3).
   
Q 10. What is the maximum time limit to submit the MDA Claim?
Ans Claim forms duly filled in and compete in all respect must be submitted to the Council within 90 days of return to India. However, claims submitted within 30 days from the expiry of 90 days will be entertained by the Council with 10% deduction. The claims which are submitted after 120 days of return to India shall not be entertained under any circumstances. Any deficiencies in the claim as intimated by the Council must be completed within 30 days of the date of directions given in this regard failing which the claim shall stand rejected without any further intimation or reminder in this regard by the Council.
   
These are basic generated FAQ's and are only of illustrative nature. However, specific cases/queries shall be dealt as per specific guidelines of the Council/concerned organization issued from time to time.

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