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NEW DELHI : Industrial clusters in nearly a dozen upcoming industrial parks may be ranked on the quality of infrastructure periodically to attract investment, drive competition and raise standards of manufacturing facilities.

The government is also digitally mapping industrial parks and economic zones to ease investment flows, besides provisioning for a single-window system for all clearances.

Currently, 11 industrial corridors are being developed by the government to enhance industrial infrastructure in the country, connecting metros and some large cities. These include Delhi-Mumbai, Chennai-Bengaluru, Amritsar-Kolkata and Bengaluru-Mumbai industrial corridors.

The industrial corridors are aimed at attracting investment in what the government hopes will become global manufacturing hubs with modern infrastructure and amenities.

“The idea is to create quality infrastructure ahead of demand. The focus is to keep developed clusters ready for immediate allotment for attracting investments. Therefore, ranking of these clusters and industrial parks on regular intervals will bring in competition among these clusters and states to provide better facilities," said a person aware of the development.

The rankings are based on a GIS-enabled database that furnishes information about existing external and internal infrastructure such as road, air, rail and port connectivity and other common facilities in the manufacturing clusters.

The industrial Park Rating System report released in 2021 evaluated the competitiveness of an industrial park against global benchmarks on four metrics—internal infrastructure and utilities, external infrastructure and connectivity, business services and facilities, and environment and safety management.

“Based on rankings, investors can identify suitable investable areas based on infrastructure, connectivity, business support services and environment and safety standards," said another person.

Commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal last year urged states to fast-track National Industrial Corridor Corporation (NICDC) projects and set a deadline for the acquisition and allotment of land in these industrial clusters.

He cautioned that projects could be shifted to other states if the allotted state failed to acquire land and fast-track the project.

Under the industrial corridors programme, 32 projects including smart greenfield industrial regions, integrated manufacturing clusters and multimodal logistics hubs are being developed with ‘plug and play’ infrastructure.

Trunk infrastructure in four industrial nodes is complete and land allotment is being worked out in coordination with special purpose vehicles.

The other industrial corridors being developed would connect Delhi-Nagpur, Hyderabad-Bengaluru, Hyderabad Nagpur, Hyderabad-Warangal, the Odisha Economic Corridor, and extension of Chennai-Bengaluru Industrial Corridor to Kochi via Coimbatore.

“The government is also working to provision single window system for all clearances and handholding investors and promote ease of doing business," said the second person quoted above.

Until last year, a combined investment of 16,760 crore had been made in four ‘smart industrial cities’ that are coming up at Dholera (Gujarat), Shendra Bidkin (Maharashtra), Vikram Udyogpuri (Madhya Pradesh) and Greater Noida (Uttar Pradesh).

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dilasha Seth
" Dilasha Seth is a journalist reporting on macroeconomic policy for the last 11 years. She writes extensively on issues including international trade, macroeconomic data, fiscal policy, and taxation. At Mint, she reports on trade deals that India is signing besides key policy decisions of the Ministry of Finance. She closely tracked and covered the transition to the goods and services tax (GST) regime in 2017 and also writes on direct tax-related issues. In the past, she has worked with Business Standard and The Economic Times. She is based in Bangalore."
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