The Government plans to table the Development of Enterprise and Service Hubs (DESH) Bill during the upcoming monsoon session of the Parliament, likely to commence on July 18th. The Bill, which will overhaul the existing Special Economic Zone law of 2005, aims to revive interest in SEZs and develop more inclusive economic hubs.
As per the draft bill, SEZs will be revamped and renamed as Development hubs and will be free from a number of the laws that currently restrict them. These hubs will facilitate both export-oriented and domestic investment, playing the dual role of domestic tariff area and SEZ. To boost ease of doing business, the draft DESH Bill also provides for the establishment and maintenance of an online portal within six months from the date of commencement of the Act.
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry has also started the process of denotifying empty spaces above 100 million sq ft built-up area, worth around Rs 30,000 crore across the 260 plus SEZs in the country so that areas that have no demand can be used for industrial or other purposes. This addresses the long-standing demand for partial denotification for IT, services units.