SEZ Policy Review Committee holds final meeting

Why in News?

  • The SEZ Policy Review Committee has its final round of consultations with the members under the chairmanship of the Commerce Secretary.
  • The Committee was of the opinion that SEZ should now transform into “Employment and Economic Enclaves” (3Es).

Why such Policy Review?

  • The objective of the Committee was to evaluate the SEZ policy framed in 2000 and suggest measures to make the policy WTO compatible.
  • It is aimed to give suggestions which will encourage manufacturing and services sector and lead to maximizing utilization of vacant land in SEZs.
  • It further aims to create seamlessness between SEZ policy and other schemes like Costal Economic Zone, Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor, National Industrial Manufacturing Zone, Food Parks and Textile Parks.

Broadening the scope of SEZs:

  • The changes in the macro-economic environment in India required a re-look at the SEZ Policy framework so that focus is on enabling generation of 100 million jobs in the manufacturing sector. It will enable manufacturing competitiveness within the framework of WTO rules, bringing in services sectors like health care, financial and legal services, repair and design services under SEZs.

Special Economic Zones (SEZ):

  • SEZs are set up under Special Economic Zones Act, 2005 as duty free enclave and shall be deemed to be foreign territory for the purposes of trade operations and duties and tariffs in India. SEZ units are deemed to be outside the customs territory of India.
  • Goods and services coming into SEZs from the domestic tariff area or DTA are treated as exports from India and goods and services rendered from the SEZ to the DTA are treated as imports into India.
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