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STPI backs Maran's demand on new SEZs

Written by: Staff
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Bangalore, Sep 14 (UNI) Backing Union IT Minister Dayanidhi Maran's demand to bring the new IT and ITES Special Economic Zones (SEZ) under the administration of the Software and Technology Parks of India, STPI today said it was best equipped to manage the industry.

In a chat with reporters here, STPI Director B V Naidu said STPI, launched in 1993, had grown into a large organisation, with nearly 4,000 IT and IT Enabled Services based industries being its members.

It was best equipped to manage and monitor the IT and ITES companies that would be located in the new SEZs, coming up at many places in the country under the new policy of the UPA Government at the Centre.

Mr Maran, in a letter to Union Commerce and Industries Minister Kamal Nath and Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee, the Chairman of the empowered Group of Ministers (EGOM) on SEZs, had said monitoring and administration of IT and ITES companies should be done by STPI.

He had claimed that though the last meeting of eGOM had taken a decision on these lines, it was not recorded in the minutes. The Commerce Ministry, which operated the SEZs, was not keen to give away its hold.

The Minister's letter and STPI's strong backing of the proposal comes in the wake of 94 new IT specific SEZs being sanctioned by the Board of Approval (BoA).

Mr Naidu said 37 per cent of the IT and ITES exports from Bangalore, considered the IT hub of the country, was being done by companies under STPI's administration. STPI housed about 3,800 small companies of less than Rs 100 crore in size and had excelled in promotion of tier II and III companies.

''STPI scheme is actually derived out on the order of Export Oriented Units scheme. Now EOUs form part of IT-based SEZs. Hence, their administration should be handed over to STPI. Moreover, STPI has proved its worth by managing the industry ably by providing quality services and minimising red tapism. So, the administration of such concerns going back to the hands of Development Commissioner of Commerce Department is undesirable in industry point of view,'' he said.

UNI RS GD SBA BD1929

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