The Union Ministry of Commerce had last week appointed a seven-member panel of industrialists headed by Kalyani to suggest key policy reforms to improve the performance of SEZs and EOUs across India.
The six industrialist members of the panel are: Ravindra Sannareddy, managing director of Sricity SEZ, Neel Raheja, Group President, K Raheja Group, Anita Arjundas, managing director, Mahindra Life Space Developer, Ajay Pandey, MD and Group CEO, Gift City SEZ Ltd, Srikanth Badiga, Director, Hyderabad Phoenix Developer, and Anil Misra MD Tata Steel SEZ Ltd.
Apart from these, Principal Secretaries of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, and the Additional Secretary and Director in charge of SEZ in the Department of Commerce have also been named members.
However, the Export Promotion Council of EOU & SEZ (EPCES) has stated in a letter that the Ministry of Commerce has side-stepped inclusion of operational units and their representative body in the panel.
“This group doesn’t have anybody from the units or from the council itself. The EPCES has the authority to register and issue membership certificates, and truly represents developers, co-developers and units, but has not found any place in this committee,” said the letter.
There are 223 operational SEZs with a total of as many as 5,146 units, none of whom form part of the panel.
The EPCES, therefore, believes that the terms of reference to be submitted to the government for a revised SEZ policy, must have members from operational units and their representative body for framing a policy framework suiting to SEZ members.