ZT NEWS NETWORK
Srinagar: The Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry today held a meeting with stakeholders belonging to the Industrial Sector. During the meeting, the representatives deliberated upon the various problems faced by the industrial sector.
Members stated that the local industrial sector was witnessing it’s worst period because of the withdrawal of support by the Government. The lack of budgetary assistance and abolition of Toll Tax without announcement of any substituting protective mechanism had severely impacted the local industry of Kashmir.
Members complained that non-adherence to the industrial policy providing for price preference to local units, delayed reimbursements of CGST and SGST.
The meeting was presided over by Nasir Hamid Khan, Senior Vice President, KCC&I.
Members stated that major changes in Government Policies like implementation of GST had resulted in aggravating the stress on the local industries and caused severe capital contraction. The financial institutions have not so far provided the needed support to help the industries tide over this crisis. Due to major accounts being under stress, borrowers are prevented from availing benefits of schemes including the new 20 Lakh Crore package announced by the Central Government as their stressed accounts debar them from qualifying for the guidelines.
Members raised the issues of disparities in the disbursal of reimbursement vide SRO’s 63, 519 and 521. They stated that the incentives tended to be more in favour of new units while the existing units were left in the lurch. They urged the KCC&I to ensure that the incentives and reimbursements needed to be uniform so that all local industries have a level competitive field. They suggested that interventions like providing of Working Capital at concessional interest rates, waiver of interest for the period of lockdown, reschedulement of repayment plans, lowering of Power Tariff and waiver of demand charges, reduction of SIDCO/SICOP rental charges, were required to provide breathing space to the local industries.
Members pointed out that corporations like SIDCO, SFC, DFC needed to be reinvigorated to provide the necessary support to the local industries. The absence of fully functional offices of important institutions like the SIDBI and NABARD in Kashmir was a cause of concern.
Members dealing in the food processing industry stated that the absence of a common Testing Laboratory was creating difficulties in their sector. They stated that price fixation policy by the Government in Jammu and Kashmir had resulting in drying up of fresh investments and deprived the public from premium quality products. They stated that the policy had prevented open competition which would ultimately have benefited the consumers through improved quality products.
The stakeholders were unanimous about the failure of the single window system and the concept of Ease of doing business and stated that the prolonged gestation period taken in getting various clearances. They stated that this resulted in loss of critical time which deprived units from fully availing the benefits of industrial policies.
On behalf of the Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Senior Vice President Mr. Nasir Hamid Khan and Secretary General Mr. Farooq Amin briefed the members about the various activities undertaken by the KCC&I for the local industries. The members were assured that the grievances and issues raised by them would be effectively put up with the concerned authorities.