Tuesday, July 03, 2007

States get 60-day deadline to clear SEZ proposals

States get 60-day deadline to clear SEZ proposals


NEW DELHI: The Centre has warned state governments that if pending state
approvals for proposed SEZ projects are not granted within 60 days, the
proposals would be taken off the list of cases to be considered by the
board of approvals (BoA) for SEZs. As many as 170 SEZ proposals lying
with the commerce department are still to receive the go-ahead from the
respective state governments, where they are to be set up. Reliance
ADAG's proposal for a multi-product SEZ in Noida also figures in the
list as the Mayawati regime has withdrawn the state's approval.

Speaking to ET, commerce ministry officials said at the BoA meeting on
June 22, it was decided that the board would not keep holding on forever
to proposals that had not received state government nod. It was decided
that letters would be sent to states asking them to take a decision on
the pending proposals within 60 days. "Two months is long enough for
states to decide whether they want to back a proposal or not. If they do
not respond by the given time, the proposals may be taken off the list
and developers would have to re-apply," an official said.

Officials said if the states act immediately, a number of pending
proposals can be taken up at the next BoA meeting scheduled for July 12.
"Till date, there are just 19 proposals on the list for the next BoA
meet. As we can take up to 40 proposals in a meeting, if state
governments hurry, a number of pending proposals can be taken up at the
next meeting," the official said.

The recently sworn-in Mayawati government in UP, however, is expected to
take its time to grant approval to projects. The UP government has
revoked its approval for private sector SEZs that were pending with BoA
on grounds that they needed to be scrutinised again.

A total of 339 SEZs have received formal approval so far, of which 126
have been notified. In all, Rs 35,145 crore has been invested in these
zones, which have created 32,578 direct jobs.



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