BHUBANESWAR: Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NITI Aayog Amitabh Kant on Saturday sought the cooperation of the State Government for development of the proposed coastal economic zone (CEZ) between Paradip and Dhamra.
With the Centre planning to develop Paradip-Dhamra cluster as one of the coastal economic zones under Sagarmala programme, a high-level delegation of NITI Aayog, the premier think-tank of the Government, led by Kant, held discussions with the State Government officials here about the project proposal.
“Around 50 square kms of land would be required for developing the CEZ. A team of officials on Saturday also visited Dhamra and Paradip ports and assessed the situation and will submit a report to him,” Kant told reporters after the meeting.
The master plan for Paradip port is being done by Feedback Infra while PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has been entrusted the job for Dhamra port, he added.
The NITI Aayog CEO said the Paradip-Dhamra cluster is on the three CEZs identified by the Government for development. The proposed CEZ along the Odisha coast will promote port-proximate industrial clustre, reduce logistic cost, time for movement of EXIM (export and import) and domestic cargo and enhance competitiveness of manufacturing sector.
The delegation, led by Kant, met Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and discussed the proposed CEZ. Kant is stated to have requested the Chief Minister to provide the land required for infrastructure development for the CEZ. Ealier, he had told reporters that he will take up the land issue with the Chief Minister.
Assuring all possible assistance for the CEZ, Naveen told the delegation that the State Government will extend cooperation to the fullest extent for developing the Paradip-Dhamra region as one of the economic hub of international standard.
Fourteen CEZs, including Paradip-Dhamra zone have been identified along the coastline of the country in the national perspective plan of the Sagarmala programme, an initiative of the Centre to develop the existing ports of the country into world class ports.
Replying to a question, Kant said no decision has been taken so far on the proposal to start the financial year from January instead of April. He said the GST will help the ‘Make in India’ projects as the tax on final products will be less under the new tax regime.
“GST will also reduce inflation and increase revenue collection. The money earned could be utilised for the development of education and health sector,” he said.