Exports from special economic zones (SEZs) stood at at Rs 2,23,132 crore in the April-December 2010 period, a rise of 47 per cent, compared with Rs 1,51,785 crore in the same period of the last financial year, according to data released by the Export Promotion Council for export-oriented units (EOUs) and SEZs.
So far, the government has approved 582 SEZs, of which, 374 have been notified. Currently, a total of 130 SEZs are under operation and these contribute to exports from these zones. As on December 31, 2010, the total investment in SEZs stood at Rs 1,95,348 crore, according to the data. During 2009-10, total exports from SEZs stood at over Rs 2,20,711 crore. Exports from EOUs and SEZs account for 36 per cent of the country’s total exports.
Although exports from SEZs have been rising steadily, the ministry of commerce and industry had expressed concerns over the sustainability of such a growth rate, especially with the introduction of the Direct Taxes Code. The draft DTC bill has suggested the continuation of the 15-year tax holiday for units which would be operational on or before March 31, 2014.