India’s first mega coastal economic zone (CEZ)

16/11/2017 327 Geography | Infrastructure | View Recent Current Affairs

  • The Centre has given its nod for setting up India’s first mega Coastal Economic Zone (CEZ) at the Jawaharlal Nehru Port near Navi Mumbai.
  • According to the report, as many as 45 companies across various sectors such as telecom, automobile and information technology are expected to bid for around 490 acres of land to set up manufacturing units within the zone.
  • The Union Cabinet had approved setting up of the 14 CEZs under the National Perspective Plan of the Sagarmala Programme.

What is a Coastal Economic Zone?

  • The government is developing coastal economic zone in a bid to propel manufacturing, encourage port land development and create jobs.
  • The rationale behind the project is to reduce logistics costs and time for movement of cargo and improve competitiveness of India’s manufacturing sector at a global level.
  • A total of Rs 15,000 crore will be invested in the first phase of the project. The phase is expected to create more than 1.5 lakh jobs. Each CEZ would be as large as 2,000 to 3,000 square kilometres.
  • The CEZs will be economic zones comprising districts on the coast or having a significant linkage to ports.
  • The government is keen on attracting large export-oriented companies which would in turn create smaller manufacturers around it to meet the need, according to the report.

Clusters and Locations

  • The proposed CEZs will come up in Kachch, Suryapur and Saurashtra in Gujarat, northern Konkan and southern Konkan in Maharashtra, Dakshin Kanara in Karnataka, Malabar in Kerala, Mannar, southern Visakhapatnam–Chennai Industrial Corridor (VCIC) and Poompuhar in Tamil Nadu, northern and central VCIC in Andhra Pradesh, Kalinga in Odisha and Gaud in West Bengal.
  • The zones will be further bifurcated in sectoral clusters focusing on manufacturing, petrochemicals, refining, energy, etc.
  • States will have to transfer the land to the central government which could be a hurdle for smaller states such as Goa.
  • States do not have contiguous land parcels and those large land acquisitions and compensation costs could delay the project.

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