IndianEra > Business > COVID-19 India: Industry Getting Ready To Resume Operations!

Finally, the economic activity in India is getting to start!

On April 15, 2020, the Central Government issued orders for partial relaxation to manufacturing, construction and movement of goods, starting April 20, 2020.

Around 80 percent of export units in SEZs, industrial townships and clusters are now getting ready to resume their operations in four days.

As per the government announcement, around 1,000 units in SEZ locations would be operational in the first round.

Ministry of Home Affairs

The Ministry of Home Affairs, on April 15, 2020, categorized the nation into a hotspot and non-hotspot districts and also issued special guidelines for economic activity in those areas.

The Center has listed 170 hotspot districts with the highest incidences of COVID-19 as red zones, followed by 207 yellow zone areas and 359 green zone districts.

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The green zone areas are the ones with no cases reported in the last 28 days.

Food processing units across rural areas, cargo movement through rail and roadways, and activity at major sea and land ports have been allowed.

Dabhas and food restaurants across the national highways have also been permitted.

Meanwhile, the construction activity has been limited to rural areas and outside city areas, municipalities and industrial parks.

“I am happy to see the notification by MHA. I am glad that this gives us some clarity on what could happen after April 20,” TV Narendran, MD, Tata Steel said in a statement.

While the country has 232 SEZs with around 6000 units, 400 units operating on essential services such as pharma and power are already functional, and 2,000 IT units are working with employees supporting from home.

“In the first week beginning April 20, we expect 1,000 units to become active but that depends on many factors such as the kind of industry and if they can maintain social distancing,” said an official.

Development commissioners of SEZ units are reportedly holding discussions with the industry and are likely to further their discussions over the next 4 days on transportation, logistics and other areas.

India Special Economic Zones Units

“These units will not become 100% functional. As of now, even the essential ones are working with 20% labor,” added the official, expressing hope that the government will open these units too under specific guidelines.

According to the Federation of Indian Export Organizations (FIEO), 80-85 percent of export units in engineering, electronics, chemicals and pharma sectors are likely to become operational.

“Since in exports, documents are extremely important to show proof of delivery and negotiation, exporting companies having IEC number may be allowed passes for two persons, once a week, to collect documents from the office for submission to banks, shipping lines, courier companies,” says Sharad Kumar Saraf, president, FIEO.

“Only 5% of the units are in Export Oriented Units (EOU). Also, we will need around 7-10 days to prepare for our units to begin work such as cleaning and sanitizing,” says the Engineering Export Promotion Council (EEPC) India chairman Ravi Sehgal.

Stay tuned to for more latest updates on corona and other India-related news stories.

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Posted by IndianEra, 16/04/2020