Why do you think five Topcem Cement promoters have floated a new company and proposed another large integrated Cement plant in East Jaintia hills district of Meghalaya?
Topcem Cement has also embarked on a plan to expand its production capacity by a whopping 110.75 percent. Similarly, Taj Cement promoters are also planning to set up another large cement plant in the area.
It is perceptible that the proposal for two new large integrated cement plants and expansion proposal of Topcem Cement are primarily aimed at enjoying the ‘subsidies’ under the Meghalaya Industrial & Investment Promotion Scheme, 2016.
The Meghalaya Industrial & Investment Promotion Scheme, 2016, which was notified on May 23, 2017, will be in effect till December 20, 2022.
And the cement companies in Meghalaya, during the last one decade, have been using Meghalaya Industrial & Investment Promotion Scheme, 2016 as a ‘milking cow’ for quick financial gains.
Still cement companies in Meghalaya, especially Topcem Cement, have been looting the tribal population by selling cement at a higher rate (in comparison to Assam).
Even as the cement companies in Jaintia hills district are a big cause of concern from an environmental point of view, the Meghalaya government shall provide 99 percent SGST remission for a period of seven years from the date of commencement of commercial production.
While SGST on cement is 14 percent, the Meghalaya government will offer 99 percent remission to the new cement companies for a period of seven years. It is definitely a whopping amount of revenue, which the people of the state are going to sacrifice.
Moreover, for sale of goods and byproducts to other states, the new units shall be eligible for remission of 99 percent of the CGST (14 percent) amount.
All existing units undergoing expansion of 25 percent or more are also eligible for exemption of GST for the further period of 5 years.
In addition to the ‘lucrative’ remissions on GST, the new cement companies, under the Meghalaya Industrial & Investment Promotion Scheme (MIIPS), 2016, will enjoy the State Capital Investment Subsidy, which offers 30 percent grant on cost of factory building and plant and machinery subject.
Additional Border Area Subsidy of 15 percent will be offered to the new cement plants on cost of factory building, plant and machinery since the enterprises will be set up within 10 kms from the international border.
Under MIIPS 2016, the new cement companies will avail 4 percent Interest Subsidy on interest paid to banks and financial institutions for a period of 3 (three) years from the date of disbursement of the loan.
The cement companies will also be granted exemption from paying royalty on limestone which they are going to use for one year for manufacturing of cement. Exemption on royalty on limestone for a year is a huge loss of revenue to Meghalaya.
The cement companies will get 100 percent refund of CGST on the amount actually paid on purchases of machinery and equipments which are genuinely required for setting up of the unit.
The Meghalaya government will offer a 50 percent subsidy on Quality Control Measures, especially on cost of laboratory equipment for the purpose of quality-control and BIS Certification.
Under MIIPS 2016, the Meghalaya government will provide 50 percent subsidy on Pollution Control Measures and 30 percent subsidy on Diesel Generator Set.
Moreover, the Meghalaya government will offer 75 percent of Stamp Duty and Registration fees to assist execution of deeds of mortgage pertaining to loans from financial institutions and banks for projects in Meghalaya.