The West Bengal government is considering granting industry status to the state’s $ 20 billion logistics sector for the continued development of various infrastructure projects, an official said on Saturday.
The state is working on a logistics policy and its short-term implementation could require around Rs 1,000 crore, the official told PTI.
The Union government has also formulated a national policy aimed at reducing logistics costs from the current 14% of gross domestic product to less than 10% by 2022.
“The status of the industry will help the logistics sector to develop infrastructure smoothly. Converting agricultural land to develop logistics infrastructure will be easier. Access to land banks, state funding, incentives and one-stop-shop support will also be easier, ”the official said.
Regarding the proposed logistics policy, he said, “the government of West Bengal may need funding of 120-150 million US dollars (about 1,000 crore rupees) to lay the groundwork for its implementation. short-term work “.
Authorities have suggested setting up a nodal agency, the Logistics Development Council, with representatives from both industry and government, to implement the policy, the official said.
The state is also considering reserving 500 acres of land for logistics development, of which 100 acres could be extracted from rehabilitated land with multimodal connectivity.
West Bengal is particularly well placed in its positioning as it benefits from multimodal logistics capabilities such as water, roads and railways, state finance minister Amit Mitra said last week.
The state government has mainly identified five important sites – Tajpur, Dankuni, Malda, Siliguri and Durgapur – which have the potential to become logistics centers for industrial zones within a radius of 100 to 150 kilometers.
The state government is encouraging the development of a “freight village” at Sankrail on the outskirts of Kolkata, where a contiguous plot of land of over 100 acres is available with multimodal connectivity, sources said.
The state will explore the use of international funding agencies to supplement its own budget allocations for the development of the logistics sector, they said.
The government of West Bengal foresees a need for financing for the development of the sector over the next 1015 years in order to fully implement the initiatives under this policy.
The West Bengal government will also provide an impetus for skills development to create employment opportunities for women in the sector. PTI BSM NN NN