Economic Revival Committee headed by Dr. Hasmukh Adhia submits its report to CM
Chief Minister of the state Mr. Vijay Rupani had constituted a six-member Economic Revival Committee headed by Dr. Hasmukh Adhia, Former Finance Secretary, Government of India, to deliberate on economic revival measures including fiscal restructuring under post COVID-19 pandemic scenario and to provide comprehensive suggestive measures for minimising the impact of disruptions created and restarting the cycle of economic activity.
The six member committee presented its report to the Chief Minister in the presence of Deputy Chief Minister Mr. Nitin Patel, Minister of Education Mr. BhupendrasinhChudasama, other senior ministers of the cabinet, Chief Principal Secretary to CM Mr. K.Kailashnathan and Chief Secretary Mr. Anil Mukim.
The Committee conducted about 37 meetings which included discussions with about 44 internal stakeholders and 64 external stakeholders. Both the Interim and Final report were submitted to the GoG in required time duration or one month.
The Interim Report comprising of about 103 suggestions focusing on the immediate short-term measures to kickstart the economy was submitted to the Government of Gujarat on 28th May 2020. The Committee also expressed satisfaction for accepting interim report suggestions and announcing package accordingly.
The Final Report comprising of 231 suggestions focusing on the medium and long-term strategies to provide enabling policy environment in the state was submitted to Government of Gujarat on 12th June 2020.
All recommendations of the Committee are based on the foundation of the basic approach to development of Gujarat. The suggestions focus on infrastructure strengthening, raising of resources, strategy for attracting investment including Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), fiscal management strategies, measures to enhance benefits that the State can avail under existing GoI schemes and Atmanirbhar Bharat package announced by the Ministry of Finance, GoI.
Some of the key suggestions that the Committee gave as part of the Final Report are:
- Land monetization as a tool for immediate boost
- Property Tax reforms – linking with jantri rates
- Water Meter Policy for all the municipal corporations may be prepared and implement within a year. All industrial and commercial units may be covered in first 2 years.
- About 53 services of Urban Development Department may be made online on eNagar platform as early as possible to promote faceless administration.
- Commutation of passengers from suburban to cities – putting more buses and privatizing different routes for better facilities.
- Using EWS land pockets and Construction Workers Fund, create large scale rental housing in PPP mode
- Self-assessment & self-declaration may be proposed and encouraged in Property Tax assessment.
- Transferable Development Rights (TDR) exchange mechanism for the State equating with the Jantri amount among cities for facilitating slum & rehabilitation schemes in cities with dense slums.
- Policy for renewal/extension of port concessions upto 60 years
- Policy for maximum utilization of existing ports including captive ports
- Developing large industrial parks next to existing ports
- GMB processes to be digitized and made customer centric
International Financial Services Centre (GIFT City)
- Bringing in Bullion Exchange/Specialised Universities/ International Arbitrary Centre/ NIFTY Futures Trading Centre
- Permit NRIs and foreign individuals to open in foreign currency bank accounts and to be served with brokerage, asset management and insurance products
- Gujarat may build the entire FDI attraction strategy on 4 principle pillars – ease of approval, less expensive land with plug and play component, competitive energy cost and quality of infrastructure.
- Sectors to be focused for FDI – Bulk Drugs, Synthetic Fabrics, Electronic Components, Medical Devices, Energy Storage Devices, Auto Components
- Pruning & grouping approvals in to – basic minimum approvals required, add-on approvals for specific sectors and facilitation (Subsidy related) approvals. Revisit timelines of such approvals and enhance timelines.
- List of available digital documents may be prepared by all govt. departments and the same can be populated in Digi-locker.
- Government of Gujarat may do away with manual acceptance of application in all departments and may allow only online based applications with provision of approval through digital signature.
- There can be a provision for green channel-faster approval system where NOCs (or) record verification has been done recently
Ease of Doing Business
- Unified portal for all services relating to industries and businesses
- Queries on applications to be raised within 7 days, to avoid delay in approvals
- For License under Contract Labour Act, increase number of workers from 10 to 50 and period of license from 1 to 3 years
Tourism – Catalyst of Employment Growth
- Thrust of tourism for next two years should be to attract Gujarat based tourists along with tourists from other states.
- New Tourism Policy should cover novel areas such as cinematic tourism, wellness tourism and cruise tourism also
Developing Right Quality Manpower
- Provision for bridge course for new entrants in colleges and finishing school course at the end of graduation
- Training of all teachers in the use of technology and associated pedagogy
Improving Quality of Higher Education
- More Samras hostels may be setup in cities for enhancing prospects of access to education
- Use a network of digital learning centres to support distance learning for students who are in rural area and have to look after earning needs
Digital Empowerment of Youth
- Government of Gujarat may launch a scheme for providing smart phone to 20 lakh persons in a targeted group with pre-loaded software for learning and digital transactions
- A scheme can be made for training people already owning smart phones for use of applications relating to daily utility
Agriculture and Rural Economy
- Bringing Krishi Mahotsav in focus
- Finishing Narmada Command Area development work in a time bound manner by putting extra resources
- Setting up of warehouses and promotion of Warehouse Receipt Financing by crops or products.
- The corporate and cooperative farming may to be encouraged by easing of land ownership and land use regulations.
- Need for a new healthcare model of shared ownership and professional management
- All Health Care Organisations shall be linked with Telemedicine project.
Source: Information Department, Gujarat