Dawn Punjab

PUNJAB CABINET APPROVES LIST OF NOCs FOR MSMEs TO BOOST EASE OF BUSINESS

 

Chandigarh :  To boost ‘Ease of Doing Business’ for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), the Punjab Cabinet led by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday approved a list of NOCs required for setting up of industry in the state.

With this move, Punjab has become the first state in the country to take systematic proactive steps for improving Ease of Doing Business in matters of NOCs to enable MSMEs to flourish and prosper in the State.

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The Chief Minister had, in his Independence Day speech yesterday, announced the state government’s decision to promote MSME business in the state, and the list approved today is in line with the same. It is based on recommendations of the Global Alliance for Mass Entrepreneurship (GAME) – an organization engaged by Punjab Government to make Punjab a progressive industrial hub.

Notably, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Department of Industries & Commerce, Punjab and Global Alliance for Mass Entrepreneurship (GAME) in November 2020, with a tenure of two years i.e. from 02.11.2020 to 02.11.2022, to initiate new industry reforms.

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According to a spokesperson of the Chief Minister’s Office, the approved exhaustive list of NOCs will be a definitive source for entrepreneurs to access all NOC related information for establishing and operationalizing business. In future, any addition in the approved list of NOCs shall be made by the concerned Administrative Department after approval from the Council of Ministers.

One of the areas identified by GAME is streamlining NOCs required by an investor from various departments during the pre-operationalization and post-operationalization stages. However, a full and final list of such NOCs and NOC related information, such as the purpose of NOC, checklist of accompanying documents, and NOC forms, are currently not easily available. At present, most of the NOCs are also issued manually.

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Paucity of such information and lack of clear procedure for obtaining NOCs was causing major problems for entrepreneurs wanting to set up business in Punjab, the cabinet noted. It was thus felt necessary to put a detailed list of NOCs in place in order reduce the compliance burden on enterprises and to fulfill the mandates of the Punjab Right to Business Act, 2020, and the Punjab Anti-Red Tape Act, 2021.

 

APPROVES POLICY AMENDMENT FOR STANDALONE ALCOHOLIC PRODUCTS’ MANUFACTURING UNITS

In a bid to boost the utilization of agro waste available in the state for manufacturing of Bio-fuels, the Cabinet also approved amendment to the Industrial & Business Development Policy-2017 to exempt the standalone units that are manufacturing alcoholic products.

It may be recalled that the Government of India had notified the National Policy on Biofuels –2018 under the Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Programme, with an indicative target of 20% blending of ethanol in petrol by 2025. The programme aims at achieving multiple outcomes, such as addressing environmental concerns, reducing import dependency and providing boost to agriculture sector.

In order to promote production and supply of Ethanol for Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Program of Government of India, the Punjab Government has exempted the standalone units manufacturing alcoholic products, like ethanol, which are not included in Division no. 11 – “Manufacture of Beverages” of NIC Code 2008 from the negative list of industry under Industrial & Business Development Policy, 2017, provided only those Bio-ethanol units will become eligible for incentive  which shall install paddy straw fuel based boilers.

The ethyl alcohol is generally manufactured from maize and rice grains, and the government is also promoting the usage of broken/damaged grains by the distilleries for manufacturing of ethanol. Therefore, the diversification of agriculture to maize crop may also get boost with the requirement of ethanol for blending in the petrol as per National Bio-fuel Policy.         

OKAYS SALE OF HOUSES BUILT UNDER SIHS FOR INDUSTRIAL WORKERS

The Council of Ministers further approved the proposal mooted by the Labour department to sell the houses built under the Subsidised Industrial Housing Scheme (SIHS) for Industrial Workers under Punjab Industrial Housing Act, 156. In case of sale of houses constructed under SIHS for industrial workers under the said Act, no financial burden would be imposed on the exchequer. The resultant revenue on the sale would be deposited in the Government Treasury and poor workers will get housing.

DP Bureau
Author: DP Bureau

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