In a written reply to the Rajya Sabha, Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the government periodically reviews the SEZ policy on the basis of suggestions received from stakeholders.”...(the government) is presently engaged in inter-ministerial consultations for finalisation of a proposal to make dual utilisation of facilities in non-processing area of special economic zones (SEZs) as well as domestic tariff area (DTA) entities," she said.
    
Replying to a separate question on SEZs, she said that exports from these zones in 2013-14 stood at Rs 4.94 lakh crore as compared to Rs 4.76 lakh crore in 2012-13.
    
On the question whether as per the recent report of CAG, large tract of land allocated to SEZs have been either been diverted or sold on profitable price, the minister said: "Land for SEZs is provided by the concerned state governments.

"The Board of Approval on SEZs only considers those  proposals which have been duly recommended by the state governments. Since land is a state subject, state governments are free to frame any law/rule on the subject."
    
She added that in order to prevent any possible misuse of de-notified parcels of land by the developers, the commerce department issued guidelines in September last year.
    
As per the guidelines, all de-notification proposals must have an unambiguous 'No Objection certificate' from state government concerned; state government may also ensure that such de-notified parcels would be utilised towards creation of infrastructure which would sub-serve the objective of the SEZ as originally envisaged.
    
Flaying the SEZ policy, CAG has said that large tracts of land acquired for special economic zones were de-notified but the resultant price appreciation benefited developers.
    
In terms of area of land, out of 39,245.56 hectare of land notified in the six states (Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnatka, Maharashtra and West Bengal), 5,402.22 hectares (14 percent) of land was de-notified and diverted for commercial purposes in several cases, CAG report has said.

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