The government has cancelled approvals granted to eight SEZ projects, including those of Concord India and Bangalore International Airport, as no significant progress was made by developers to complete the projects. The Board of Approval, headed by Commerce Secretary Rita Teaotia, in its meeting on March 8 cancelled the approvals, according to the minutes of the meeting. The 19-member Board of Approval (BoA) deals with SEZ related matters. “The board examined eight cases of cancellation of formal approval/notification and approved cancellation,” the minutes of the BoA meeting said.
All the eight IT/ITeS zones were planned in Karnataka. However, it said that the cancellation is subject to the development commissioner furnishing a certificate certifying that the developer has not availed any tax/duty benefits including service tax exemptions, if any, under SEZ Act/rules or has refunded any such benefits availed by it.
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Since there was no significant progress made by the developer, the concerned development commissioner had proposed for cancellation of formal approval granted to the developer, an official said. Developers of these SEZ projects include Concord India and Bangalore International Airport, Kinfotech Software, Salarpuria Properties, Gokaldas Images Infrastructure and San Engineering and Locomotive Company, among others.
Special economic zones (SEZ) have been planned to promote overseas shipments. SEZs and export oriented units (EOUs) contribute about 33 per cent to the country’s total exports. Exports from these zones stood at Rs 2.36 lakh crore during April-September 2016. Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telangana and Maharashtra house most of the operational SEZs in the country.