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'Online SMEs seek tax benefits for eCommerce transactions'

Most of online entrepreneurs and small & medium enterprises (SMEs) seek tax benefits for eCommerce transactions and also want that the government should grant 'exporter' status to the online retailers who are selling their products abroad, online marketplace, eBay India said Wednesday.

"About 26 percent Domestic Entrepreneurs seek tax benefits for eCommerce transactions and 21 percent Retail Exporters want recognition of online retail export transactions as exports. eBay entrepreneurs are excited about the growth and potential of eCommerce, they also have some asks of the government both at the centre & at the state level," said Latif Nathani, Managing Director, eBay India, while launching the key findings on Indian businesses engaged in eCommerce at an event in New Delhi on Wednesday.

"Retail exporters on the other hand had their top demand as the recognition of online retail export transactions as export followed by costume exemptions on retail exports below USD 25,000 and lastly tax benefits on eCommerce transactions," he added.

Anil Bhardwaj, Secretary General, Federation of Indian Micro and Small & Medium Enterprises (FISME) and Latif Nathani jointly unveiled the Online Business Index by eBay India, a detailed research report of Indian businesses engaged in eCommerce.

The report highlights eCommerce adoption trends by entrepreneurs and small & medium enterprises and covers both domestic & retail export entrepreneurs.

The findings were compiled using survey responses from over 700 of eBay India's top sellers, whose annual turnover ranges from USD 10,000 to USD 4.5 million.

Echoing the sentiment, Anil Bhardwaj said, "The internet remains unconstrained by geography and offers a big opportunity to micro, small and medium businesses to expand their reach. I strongly urge entrepreneurs to explore this medium and enjoy the multiple benefits offered through an online presence."

The Online Business Index is a major new research report of Indian businesses engaged in eCommerce. It has been compiled using survey responses from 703 of eBay India's top sellers, whose annual turnover ranges from USD 60,000 to USD 6.4 million in July 2013.

The sample on which the index is based represents online businesses of different sizes from around India with varying relationships to eBay.

On future outlook of Mobile Commerce (mCommerce), it said, both domestic (59 percent) & retail export entrepreneurs (55 percent) are excited about the potential of mobile commerce as a customer acquisition channel and are keen to leverage it to grow their business and  see it playing a very important role over the next 12 months. They plan to invest in mobile in multiple ways including leveraging eBay as a channel since it invests heavily in mobile commerce (64 percent).

"eBay India is committed to encouraging many more Indian entrepreneurs to benefit from the large domestic & export opportunity provided by eBay's strong entrepreneurship platform & consumer base," said Nathani.

"The eBay Online Business Index is an attempt to present the pulse of the online entrepreneur and give their views a voice," he added.