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Uncertainty dogs 318 SEZ proposals
BS Reporter in New Delhi | January 24, 2007 12:17 IST
Many prospective special economic zone developers are concerned about the fate of their approved zones.
As many as 237 formally-approved zones are pending final notification, while another 81 fresh proposals are waiting to be approved. The 237 approved zones include the who's who of corporate India -- Tata Sons, Wipro, DLF and Indiabulls, among others.
The apprehensions are based on the decision of the Empowered Group of Ministers to put on hold fresh approvals and notification of SEZs beyond the 63 already notified.
A commerce ministry statement today said the apprehensions had been expressed by SEZ developers and other stakeholders regarding the future of investments made by them in relation to SEZ projects.
However, according to industry bodies, the fear is unjustified. Assocham has pointed out that the pending decision on SEZs is a temporary phase and the EGoM would meet again to take a final decision on SEZ's.
Amit Mitra, secretary general, Ficci said the government's decision to put on hold approvals of SEZ's will eventually benefit stakeholder. "This will actually stimulate investments in SEZs because the impending meeting of the EGoM is likely to settle all the contentious issues regarding land acquisition," Mitra said.
"Investments in SEZs will not be affected. On the contrary, we expect something positive to come out of this delay. The government will review the progress of SEZs in consultation with concerned departments, and it will take a decision on which will suit the interests of farmers and the industry," DS Rawat, secretary general, Assocham, said.
Meanwhile, Commerce and Industry Kamal Nath today said the government was waiting for the land acquisition rehabilitation package for farmers from state governments, and that the central government had already asked state chief ministers to submit land acquisition packages to the EGoM.
"The ministry of panchayati raj, in consultation with other relevant departments, will consider the rehabilitation package to ensure that more than adequate compensation is paid to farmers from whom land is being acquired for SEZ purposes," he said.