META urges TN Govt to set up SEZ

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Chennai, Aug 13: The Madras Electric Trades Association (META) urged the Tamil Nadu Government to create a Special Economic Zone (SEZ), taking into considertion, a huge consumption of electrical products in the state.

Addressing a press conference here in connection with the fifth exhibition of 'Electrica 2008' to be held here from August 15 to 17, Association President Hukichand D Shah said there was a dire need for setting up a SEZ as Tamil Nadu was one of the largest consumer of electrical goods in the country. Though Tamil Nadu was on top, the production in the state stagnated at about 10 per cent of the total, while imports from other states add up to Rs 5,000 crore, annually.

"Hence it is important for the state government to encourage the manufacturers of electricial products, by providing hurdle free single window clearances, incentives and tax exemptions on the lines of concessions offered by Uttranchal and Himachal Pradesh governments," he said.

Mr Shah said the Association has submitted a proposal to the government to allot land for wholesale electrical trade along with a residential colony, outside the city to reduce congestion and heavy vehicle traffic in the city.

Mr Shah said to protect the electric trade, the government should also restrict Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and impose restrictions or slap a ban on Chinese products as this has badly affected the small traders. The poor quality Chinese products, which were cheaper in price, brought a bad name to the industry as they posed hazards to the people. "If it is not checked at this juncture it may prove fatal to the already stagnant industry of electric trade in the state," he added.

He said the three-day exhibition would be open to business visitors like architects, consultants, builders, electrical engineers, contractors and traders in the morning and general public in the afternoon.

The fair would showcase innovative ideas, latest trends, explicit designs, power saving devices and energy efficient lamps, he said adding Electricity Minister Arcot N Veerasamy would inaugurate the fair, which would bring manufacturers, traders and consumers under one roof.


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