Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal today shot off a letter to Union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar asking him to allot more mega food parks in the state to provide impetus to agro-processing sector and benefit farmers of the state.
The mega food parks, a flagship programme of the ministry of food processing industries (MoFPI) aims at boosting growth of food processing industry through facilitating establishment of food processing infrastructure backed by supply chain.
Punjab has been allotted only one such food park, being set up by international mega food park limited at Dabwala Kalan village in Ferozepur district.
Seeking Pawar's personal intervention to direct the MoFPI to grant more such parks, Badal said it would not only propel agro industries in the state but would also benefit farmers. He also wrote that the state government has also sought suggestions from stakeholders representing food processing industry, which would be incorporated in the upcoming schemes of MoFPI for boosting investment in this sector.
These suggestions, if implemented, would go a long way in attracting investors to invest in Mega Food Park projects, he said.
Badal also mentioned major concessions provided to such projects, including exemption from basic stamp duty and registration fee on first sale, transfer of built up space of units or land in project area, exemption from electricity duty up to 5% for 5 years, permission of direct purchase of food grains, maize, barley, fruits and vegetables required for primary processing by the units in the mega food park project.
Besides, the state also exempts payment of mandi fee, rural development fee and infrastructure cess to the extent of 1% each, subject to a maximum of 50% of fixed capital investment or for a period of 10 years, whichever is earlier, permission of sub-lease of land by special purpose vehicle (SPV) to the food procession units and exemption from ceiling limit on land being purchased from the industrial purpose including Mega Food Parks as per latest amendment in Punjab Land Reforms Act, 1972.
Badal also mentioned in the letter to Pawar that Punjab's industrial policy provides for an empowered committee, which can consider tailor-made concessions on case-to-case basis as well.