Tata's Gopalpur industrial park breaks jinx for investments in SEZ

Topics Tata Steel | SEZ

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The industrial park at Gopalpur developed by Tata Steel Special Economic Zone Ltd (TSSEZ), a subsidiary owned fully Tata Steel, looks to start activity at the SEZ notified area with two metal-based industries on board.

The two MSME (micro, small & medium enterprises) units have executed land lease deeds with the developer, pledging a combined investment of Rs 10 crore.

“Each of the units will be allotted two acres. The two units are expected to be running their operations in four to five months. They will import minerals, beneficiate them and export finished products”, said Prasanta Mallick, managing director of TSSEZ Ltd.

TSSEZ had been struggling to get committed investments for the SEZ notified area. The industrial park at Gopalpur off the coast of south Odisha sprawling over 2900 acres split into 1235 acres of SEZ and the balance area designated as Domestic Tariff Area (DTA).

The DTA has drawn investments from Tata Steel, Tata Global Beverages and Sure Safety Solutions. In its capacity as the anchor investor, Tata Steel has put up a ferro chrome facility with an annual capacity of 55,000 tonnes per annum at a cost of Rs 541 crore. A manufacturing unit for aerial targets has been installed by Sure Safety Solutions in technical collaboration with UK-based Meggitt Defence. 

At the second edition of Make in Odisha conclave staged in November 2018, Tata Global Beverages had pledged Rs 100 crore investment on a tea packaging unit at the Gopalpur park, envisaging employment for approximately 650 people when the plant reaches full capacity. The tea packaging plant, which will be operated by a third party operator nominated by TGBL, will cater to the company’s Indian market. The packaging facility is scheduled to be operational by 2020. 

Mallick said this would be the biggest facility by TGBL anywhere in the country. The TGBL unit is anticipated to commence production in July this year after getting the go-ahead from the State Level Single Window Clearance Authority.

That apart, Hyderabad-based Gemini Edibles & Fats India Pvt Ltd, famed for its Freedom brand of oils, has proposed to install a refined vegetable oil manufacturing unit within the Gopalpur industrial park. The investment is estimated at Rs 300 crore and the plant will be equipped with a capacity of 396,000 tonnes per annum. To finance the project, the company will bank on Rs 150 crore of equity and a matching term loan. The facility will be spread over 25 acres within the DTA of the industrial park.

But investments on the SEZ area have been slow to gain traction. “SEZs have lost their attractiveness especially after the roll out of Goods & Services Tax (GST). Now, the minimum land area for notifying an SEZ has been reduced from 1200 acres to 125 acres. But we are not going for de-notification of our excess SEZ area. Historically, industrial parks have long gestation periods to achieve full occupancy”, Mallick said.

TSSEZ is working on the unique positioning of the Gopalpur industrial park. The eminent focus is on luring metals and mining bases units along with port based industries. TSSEZ was engaged in joint promotional activities with the delegation of Team Odisha during the investment roadshows held in China and Singapore a few months back.

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