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Extension of benefits of the RoDTEP scheme to special economic zones and export-oriented units (EOUs) is in the pipeline to make SEZs more investor-friendly, a senior government official said on Tuesday.

The government in August announced rates of tax refunds under the Remission of Duties and Taxes on Exported Products (RoDTEP) scheme for 8,555 products, such as marine goods, yarn, dairy items, but SEZs and EOUs were kept out of this. The industry is demanding for this extension.

Speaking at a CII webinar, S Kishore, special secretary in the Department of Commerce, said recognising the pivotal role played by SEZs in pushing the country's exports, several reforms have been introduced and these include digitisation of processes and promotion of green zones to attract FDI.

"Measures like extension of the RoDTEP scheme to SEZs and EOUs are in the pipeline to make SEZs more investor friendly and leverage geopolitical phenomena," he said.

He added that there is strong inter-ministerial coordination for addressing policy issues and promoting Indian special economic zones (SEZs) as readymade land banks that offer plug-and-play facilities.

He said the Indian SEZs offer state-of-the-art infrastructure that will help in establishing India as the global manufacturing hub, and the government is committed to making them more inclusive for all sectors.

Speaking at the webinar, Sanjay Budhia, co-chairman of CII National Committee on EXIM and Managing Director Patton International Ltd, said the SEZs are playing a pivotal role in helping achieve the country's exports target of USD 400 billion during the current fiscal.

He suggested that granting infrastructure status to SEZs, formulating separate rules and procedures for manufacturing and services SEZs, and merging the SEZ policy with other schemes such as the national industrial manufacturing zones will also prove to be useful.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.

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