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National Traders’ Welfare Board (NTWB): Enhancing Trader Welfare in India

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The National Traders’ Welfare Board (NTWB), an initiative by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), marks a significant step in India’s efforts to support its vast trading community.

This topic of “National Traders’ Welfare Board (NTWB): Enhancing Trader Welfare in India” is important from the perspective of the UPSC IAS Examination, which falls under General Studies Portion.

Objectives and Composition of the NTWB

The NTWB was constituted with a clear set of objectives aimed at the welfare of traders and their employees. These include:

  • Identifying policy measures to improve trader welfare.
  • Simplifying Acts and Rules applicable to traders.
  • Recommending ways to reduce the compliance burden on traders.
  • Enhancing access to funds.
  • Providing recommendations for social security benefits, such as insurance, pension, and healthcare.
  • Addressing other problems faced by traders and their employees.

The composition of the NTWB is diverse, ensuring a comprehensive approach to the issues faced by traders. It includes:

  • A Non-Official Chairperson.
  • Up to 5 Non-Official members with expertise in retail trade.
  • Up to 10 Non-Official members representing Trade Associations.
  • One Non-Official member from each State and Union Territory.
  • 9 Ex-officio representatives from various Ministries/Departments.
  • The Joint Secretary, DPIIT, serving as the Convener of the Board.

Role and Scope

The NTWB plays a crucial role in addressing the diverse and complex issues pertinent to traders in India. The Board’s composition reflects its strength and scope, enabling it to effectively tackle the wide-ranging challenges of the retail sector.

Recent Developments and the ONDC Initiative

The inaugural meeting of the NTWB, held on December 5, 2023, at Vanijya Bhawan, New Delhi, under the chairmanship of Shri Sunil J. Singhi, focused on resolving issues related to traders. During this meeting, a presentation on the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) was made. The Board members were encouraged to promote this government initiative among the trader community, reflecting a push towards embracing digital advancements in commerce.

Conclusion

The establishment and the first meeting of the NTWB signify a proactive approach by the Indian government to address the challenges faced by traders and their employees. By focusing on policy measures, simplifications in regulations, and digital initiatives like ONDC, the NTWB is set to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of trading in India, making it more efficient, secure, and beneficial for all stakeholders involved.

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