SmartCity Kochi project gets single SEZ status

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New Delhi: The Board of Approvals on Special Economic Zones under the Department of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India today granted single SEZ status to the SmartCity Kochi project comprising 246 acres of land. The notification of the same will be issued within a month. This was one of the prime demands raised by Tecom, the promoters of SmartCity Kochi, to go ahead with the project.

The request of SmartCity Kochi Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. for addition of land in the sector specific SEZ on IT & ITeS was approved in today’s meeting of Board of Approvals on SEZ held in New Delhi which took it up as supplementary agenda. The SEZ was initially notified on March 1, 2011 over an area of 53.18 hectares. The developers wanted to add a part of land admeasuring 46.38 hectares to the already notified SEZ, thereby making the total area of the SEZ as 99.56 hectares (246 acres). The proposal involved annexing of two parcels of land separated by water bodies. The land is connected with the existing SEZ by an existing road and bridge and additional bridges will be constructed in the next 2-3 years as the project progresses. The Board of Approvals had earlier rejected the developer’s request.

Reacting to the approval, Chief Minister Shri Oommen Chandy said, “The last hurdle in the project has been overcome. Our request to make the entire project under a single SEZ has been approved by the Union Government. This had caused much delay but now work will soon start on the project”.

In his remarks, Dr. Baju George, MD, SmartCity Kochi said, “We welcome the single SEZ notification. This will help us in finalising the master plan at the earliest. A workshop to finalise a master plan will be held in Kochi on January 31. We can start the work as soon as we get the environmental clearance of the master plan and we hope to finish the project in five and a half years.”

A meeting of the Board of Directors which was held earlier this week in Dubai had decided to start the work within six months.

Kerala IT News

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