Pre-Budget: Goa industries want government to clear stand on mining

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Goa chief Minister Manohar parrikar arrives to meet PM Narendra Modi at the Parliament House in New Delhi on Friday. Express Photo by Prem Nath Pandey. 31.03.2017. *** Local Caption *** Goa chief Minister Manohar parrikar arrives to meet PM Narendra Modi at the Parliament House in New Delhi on Friday. Express Photo by Prem Nath Pandey. 31.03.2017.

Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) Goa Chapter President Atrey Sawant said the chief minister has been requested to create special zone only for the tourism activity and State tourism department would be an agency to clear the proposals there.

With the Budget session of the Goa Legislative Assembly beginning on Monday, industry is expecting the state government to make its stand clear on the crisis-hit mining sector and creation of employment for locals. Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar will present the Budget 2018-19 on February 21. The Goa Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) in its pre-budget memorandum stated that creation of 50,000 jobs by attracting investment of Rs 25,000 crore in the coastal state can be done only if tax exemptions are offered.

“The union Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) has notified guidelines for the excise free zone scheme for eligible manufacturing units in Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and North Eastern States including Sikkim,” GCCI said in the memorandum submitted to state government. Companies who have units operating in these states will get reimbursement of 58 per cent on the Central Goods and Service Tax. These incentives have been approved for a ten-year period starting from the date of GST implementation July 1, 2017 to March 31, 2027, it stated.

GCCI also demanded the state government work out certain incentives to Goan industry. “The NPV scheme has expired and there is an urgent need to extend options to encourage manufacturing and to generate employment in Goa,” it stated. The industry body has also demanded relief to the mine owners.

“The mining Industry, which at one point was the highest contributor to the state GDP, had been shut down following suspension of mining activities from September 2012 onwards. The iron ore prices have been constantly falling and are presently  at an all-time low. Taxes imposed on the industry, by the state and Central governments are very high,” GCCI said.

In its recent order, the Supreme Court quashed the second renewal of iron ore mining leases given to 88 companies in Goa in 2015. It also directed the Centre and the Goa government to grant fresh environmental clearances to them. In their presentation, another Industry body, the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) has emphasised the creation of tourism zones in Goa for generation of jobs.

CII Goa Chapter President Atrey Sawant said the chief minister has been requested to create special zone only for the tourism activity and State tourism department would be an agency to clear the proposals there. The CII also said that there should be promotion of nautical tourism in the state.

“We are also looking at declaring logistics as an industry so that there will be more storage spaces which will benefit the industry and also agriculture,” he said. Sawant said the CII also stressed the need for creation of “green buildings” in Goa for which the government should provide the incentives.

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