Kolkata: In line with Trinamool Congress’ opposition to SEZ, the West Bengal government today scrapped the state Special Economic Zone Act, 2003.
The decision was taken at a meeting of the cabinet committee on industry presided over by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Industry Minister Partha Chatterjee told reporters in Kolkata.
The act stipulated the waiver of electricity tariff in full without any restriction of period, stamp duty, registration fees, import and export duties under state law, among other issues.
Meanwhile, the state government, alarmed that Infosys might withdraw its project from the state and seek SEZ-like benefits from the Centre, has declared that it would request a different tag other than SEZ for facilities provided under the central SEZ Act 2005.
Chatterjee said the state government would not be able to give Infosys SEZ status for its proposed project at Rajarhat and was discussing alternatives with it to keep it in Kolkata.
“We want both Infosys and Wipro to expand their operations in the state, but we are making it clear that we will not be able to keep them giving SEZ status,” he said.
He said talks were continuing with Infosys and alternatives to keep the company here were being discussed.
A proposal was sent to Union Minister for Commerce and Industry Ananda Sharma after the chief minister and he held talks with him. Besides other options were also being kept open for Infosys to set up its project in the state, the minister said.
The state government has given land both to Infosys and Wipro for setting up and expanding base here with both seeking SEZ status.
While Infosys was yet to leave its footprint here, Wipro has sought land for its second unit. Infosys has purchased 50 acre.