PANAJI: In the face of strong opposition to the hike in lease rent on industrial plots, Goa IDC has deferred the implementation of the revised, higher rates.
The corporation will take up the matter of lease rent in its next board meeting and decide on new rates after consultation with the industry. It is learnt that, GIDC officials have also stopped sending demand notices to industrial units on the revised plot rates payable by them.
Speaking to this daily on Tuesday, Narayan Gad, managing director GIDC, said that, the decision to defer is keeping in mind the apprehensions of the industry. He said that units will have to pay the existing lease on plots until fresh rates are fixed.
Expressing happiness at the GIDCs decision to “listen to the industry,” Sandip Bhandare, president, GCCI, said that members would press for a resolution of the issue through discussion between stakeholders. “Deferring the issue will not provide a solution and it needs to be addressed by all stakeholders,” said Bhandare.
He added that, GIDC was targeting Rs 20 crore income through the revised rates. But we are proposing a staggered increase in lease rent so that unit owners are not burdened by higher cost and GIDC earns its revenue requirement. Presently the corporation revenue from lease rent of plots is in the range of Rs 12 crore -Rs 13 crore.
Bhandare added that, GIDC needs to improve its operations so that it lowers its running cost and is not dependent on rent income for revenues.
However Gad, pointed out that the revised lease rent was not motivated by revenue but for the purpose of rationalising rent between units in different industrial estates. “The revised rate was not an increase as termed by industry as several units were required to pay lower rent,” he added.
After its board meeting on April 4, GIDC, which is struggling financially, issued demand notices to several units based on the revised lease rent and raw water charges. Industry was angry as the corporation chose to implement the move even before the minutes of the board meeting could be finalised.
All industry associations came together to protest the move as the revised rates are not legally tenable. Industrialists said that GIDC should bring in efficiency, transparency and reduce manpower to reduce expenditure. The GCCI has suggested that the corporation must not undertake maintenance of industrial estates but entrust the job to the department of industry.
Source:: The Navhind Times