Exports from special economic zones (SEZs) grew by about 41.5 per cent to Rs 2.15 lakh crore during the April-June quarter of the current fiscal on account of healthy growth in pharmaceuticals, engineering, and gems and jewellery sectors, as per official data.
SEZs are key export hubs which contribute about one-fourth of the country's total outbound shipments. According to commerce ministry data, exports from these zones dipped to Rs 7.56 lakh crore in 2020-21 as against Rs 7.97 lakh crore in 2019-20.
In the first quarter of the current financial year, SEZ exports rose about 41.5 per cent to Rs 2.15 lakh crore. As many as 427 such zones have been approved by the government, out of which 267 are operational as on June 30.
The data showed that till June 30, Rs 6.25 lakh crore have been invested in these zones and a total of 24.47 lakh people are employed there. Export Promotion Council for EoUs and SEZs (EPCES) is the nodal body, set up by the commerce ministry, to promote shipments from these zones.
The council has announced Bhuvnesh Seth as its new chairman and Srikanth Badiga as the new vice-chairman. Seth said the council would work on taking the country's exports to USD 400 billion during the current fiscal. The major export destinations include the United Arab Emirates, US, UK, Australia and Singapore.