Central Government has given approval for setting up India’s first mega coastal economic zone (CEZ) at the Jawaharlal Nehru Port in Maharashtra.
What is Coastal Economic Zone (CEZ)?
- CEZ is an economic region comprising several coastal districts or districts that are well connected to the ports in the region and have strong industrial infrastructure (which has most likely been developed with Government support).
- These zones have business-friendly environment that offer enhanced ease of doing business, ease of exporting and importing, quicker environmental clearances and easy availability of water and electricity connections.
Central Government’s Plan to set up 14 mega CEZs:
In 2016, Union Cabinet came up with National Perspective Plan of the Sagarmala Programme under which it approved setting up of 14 mega CEZs.
- Objective of this programme is to promote development of industrial clusters around ports, reduce logistics cost, reduce cargo movement time and create hubs of job creation around the ports.
- This concept was the brainchild of erstwhile NITI Aayog vice-chairman Arvind Panagariya.
- The entire programme envisages investment of about Rs 6.5 lakh crore for creating world class industrial infrastructure which will trigger port-led economic growth by leveraging India’s 7500 km long coastline.
More Information about first mega Coastal Economic Zone at JNPT:
India’s first mega CEZ will stretch along north Konkan region spread across Nashik, Thane, Mumbai, Pune and Raigarh.
- Despite of JNPT being one of the busiest cargo ports, it has been chosen for this project due to availability of sufficient land.
- 45 companies across various business sectors including telecom, auto and Information Technology (IT) will soon bid for 200 hectares of land to set up their manufacturing units in this CEZ.
- The first phase of development will require an investment of Rs 15000 crore and is expected to create more than 1.5 lakh jobs.