Gujarat has cut down the compliance cost of environmental norms for industries by grading districts on the basis of pollution control measures needed. Tamil Nadu has exempted 135 categories of industries from the state Water Act.
These are some of the best practices the National Manufacturing and Investment Zones (NMIZs) want to replicate to give industries the cutting edge to face international competition, says a document prepared by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion.
The National Manufacturing Policy has proposed several such best practices from within India to push the share of the manufacturing sector in the GDP from the current 16% to 25% in the next 15 years.
The document has, therefore, lined up a list of 100 such practices that can be replicated in the zones. The plan is to use these as a substitute for heavy duty tax exemptions. The differences over the tax exemptions for SEZs between the finance and commerce ministries have to a large extent crippled the rollout of the SEZs, which the industry department wants to avoid.
The National Manufacturing Policy has already got an in-principle approval from the PM and it has now been forwarded to a committee of secretaries (CoS) for fine-tuning. The CoS is set to get back to the PM with the final policy with in 30 days.
The best practices agenda the document lines up is similar to the Doing Business Reports of the International Finance Corporation (IFC). These annual reports say India can sharply improve from its 134th position among 183 countries if it adopts across the nation, the best business practices from the major cities. The government has set up a committee of secretaries on the Doing Business Reports to track how far the cities have brought their business rules in sync with the best. The NMIZ document, for instance, quotes the example of Haryana where industries set up under the HSIDC/HUDA/Industries Department do not require consent under the Water (Prevention and Control Pollution) Act, 1974. Similarly, it proposes that ?central and state government will carry out the zoning exercise for NMIZ and on the basis of it the requirement of environmental impact assessment study will be done away with.?
Also a major relief, the policy proposes to grant MSME registrations to units under NMIZ whose environmental clearance is under renewal. Experts feel that encouraging the adoption of such practices will boost the investment made by the industries in these NMIZs. Arun Singh, senior economist at Dun and Bradstreet India, said: ?Such laws aim at speeding up the set-up procedure which an industry undertakes.?