National Manufacturing Policy likely by end-Sept

New Delhi: The government on Friday said it is likely to come out with a National Manufacturing Policy by the end of this month, which aims to create mega industrial zones across the country with world-class infrastructure facilities.

"The note (for the policy) will go to the Cabinet within a week. I do not foresee any delay. Hopefully within this month, it will become a reality," Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma told reporters here at a CII function.

The policy aims to create 100 million additional jobs and take the share of manufacturing to 25 per cent of the country`s GDP by 2020 from the current 15-16 per cent.

The sector contributes over 80 per cent to the country`s overall industrial production.

The policy has also proposed to relax labour and environment laws and sought tax sops for the proposed National Manufacturing Investment Zones (NMIZs). These planned big enclaves could even subsume special economic zones.

"We propose to establish 4-5 NMIZs as greenfield integrated industrial townships with world-class infrastructure financed by the central government in partnership with respective state governments with a competitive regulatory environment for attractive investments," he said.

On the ambitious USD 90 billion Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC), Sharma said that seven new investment regions would be set up across the six states of the country under the project.

"We have now completed the perspective planning of the entire DMIC region and I have moved the Cabinet for seeking support of Rs 18,500 crore for establishment of seven new investment regions across the six states of the country," he added.
These two steps would help unlock the true potential of manufacturing in India, the minister said.

He also said the first meeting of a Joint Task Force of the government and industry will take place on September 12.

The Joint Task Force was announced after the minister held consultations with CII on July 13.

On increasing the cost of credit for exporters, he said both he and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee are sensitive to the issue.

"The government agrees in-principle to the need for differential interest rates for keeping them globally competitive," he added.

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