Gitanjali Loses SEZ Project in Maharashtra

sez logoMumbai: The Government of Maharashtra has approved the cancellation of Gitanjali Gems’ special economic zone (SEZ) project in Maharashtra. The decision regarding this was taken by the Board of Approval (BoA), headed by Commerce Secretary Rita Teaotia, on its November 9 meeting, an official said.

“The cancellation, however, is subject to the development commissioner furnishing a certificate that the developer has not availed any tax or duty benefits including under service tax exemptions, if any, under SEZ Act/Rules,” the official added.

The company’s gems and jewellery SEZ was notified on June 9, 2008, and its formal approval expired on October 24, 2011. The Development Commissioner of Santacruz Electronics Export Processing Zone had stated that the developer could not get green zone converted to industrial zone even after lapse of eight years from notification.

The BoA has also approved the cancellation of Karanja Infrastructure’s Free Trade and Warehousing Zones (FTWZ) in Raigad. SEZs are export hubs, which contribute about 23 percent in the country’s total outbound shipments.

Exports from special economic zones logged a marginal growth of 0.77 percent to Rs 4.67 lakh crore in 2015-16. The exports from such 204 zones were Rs. 4.63 lakh crore in 2014-15. As per the Commerce Ministry’s data, as on March 31, these zones had attracted investments worth Rs 3.76 lakh crore and generated employment for 15.91 lakh people.