SEZs seek govt nod to surrender zones, 17 buy time

Thursday, Aug 13, 2015,21:00 IST By metro vaartha A A A

New Delhi | Three special economic zone (SEZ) developers, including Emmar MGF Land and Hindustan Newsprint, have approached the government to surrender their tax-free zones.
Furthermore, 17 special economic zone (SEZ) developers, including Navi Mumbai SEZ Pvt, Shantha Biotechnics and Electronics Corporation of Tamil Nadu, have sought time from the government to implement their respective projects, which are at different stages of implementation.
Decisions regarding all these proposals will be taken during a meeting of inter-ministerial Board of Approval (BoA), to be chaired by Commerce Secretary Rita Teaotia, on August 27.
Emmar MGF Land had secured a formal approval in June 2012 to set up an IT SEZ, but the developer has neither (put) any request for extension, nor any effort for development of the project seems to have been taken by them, agenda of the BoA meeting said.
The Principal Secretary, Industries Department, Kerala, has conveyed the no-objection of the state government for the cancellation of the LoA (letter of approval). DC (Development Commissioner) has recommended cancellation of formal approval, it said. Similar recommendation was advanced by the DC for Hindustan Newsprint for its SEZ in Kerala.
In (these three) cases, formal approval has been granted … However, since there is no significant progress made by the developer/co-developer, the DC concerned has proposed cancellation of formal approval granted to the developer, it added. Earlier, BoA had approved cancellation of over 70 SEZs.
Furthermore, six developers, including HCL IT City Lucknow, North Mumbai International Commodity Township, Reliable Exports (India) and Loma IT Park Developers have proposed to set up new zones.
While North Mumbai International Commodity Township Pvt has proposed to set up a free trade and warehousing zone in Maharashtra, Reliable Exports (India) has sought approval of BoA to set up an IT SEZ in Mumbai.
These six proposals have been submitted for consideration of BoA. Exports from these zones rose to Rs 4.94 lakh crore in 2013-14, from Rs 22,840 crore in 2005-06.
Formal approval has come for 416 proposals, of which 330 SEZs have been notified. As many as 36 such zones are operational in Tamil Nadu, followed by Karnataka and Telangana (26) and Maharashtra (25). The Commerce Ministry is struggling to increase exports as the country’s shipments in the last three years have been hovering around USD 300 billion. SEZs account for about 25 per cent of the country’s total exports.

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