The commerce ministry has approved a proposal of HCL Technologies to set up a new IT special economic zone (SEZ) in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, with a proposed investment of Rs 408.48 crore. The company’s proposal was considered by an inter-ministerial Board of Approval, headed by Commerce Secretary Rita Teaotia, at its meeting on June 19.
“The board, after deliberations, approved the proposal for setting up of the SEZ over an area of 10.43 hectares,” according to minutes of the meeting. The board also approved the cancellation of formal approval given to OSE Infrastructure as the developer has not made any significant progress on the project. The company was developing an IT special economic zone in Noida.
SEZs are developed as export hubs and they contribute about 25 per cent in the country’s total exports. Units and developers of these zones enjoy tax and non-fiscal benefits besides clearance from a single window mechanism. There are 223 operational SEZs with 5,146 units from various sectors such as IT, pharma, textile, food processing, leather, biotechnology and diamond polishing.
Most of these zones are operational in states, including Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Karnataka and Maharashtra. The ministry has recently constituted a group, headed by Bharat Forge Chairman Baba Kalyani, to study the SEZ policy.