Srinagar: The International Trade Centre (ITC), the foundation stone of which was laid in 2007 at Pampore, will never be constructed now because the state government failed to prepare a detailed project report (DPR) by 2015 deadline and consequently the government of India scheme that would have funded it has been stopped.
The entire cost of the project, Rs 100 crore, would have been borne by the government of India. The PDP-Congress coalition government had acquired 378 kanals of land in Pampore for the project. Nothing beyond fencing the land for the project has been accomplished.
What ITC was meant for
- Setting up of pioneering/pilot export projects
- Provision of equipment and machinery for the pioneering/ pilot projects aimed at exports
- Creation of common facilities for facilitating exports
- Facility for testing and standardisation as well as quality improvement of export products
- Funding related to the exchange of trade delegations
Commissioner secretary for industries and commerce Shailendera Kumar told Kashmir Reader the project was sponsored under the scheme, “Assistance to States for Development of Export Infrastructure and Allied Activities (ASIDE)”, which has been stopped because the authorities concerned failed to prepare the DPR in eight years.
In 2007, then Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad and then Commerce minister of the government of India Jairam Ramesh had laid the foundation stone of the project.
“The objective of the scheme was to involve the state in the export effort by providing assistance to the state government for creating appropriate infrastructure for the development and growth of exports,” Shailendra Kumar said.
The business community has expressed deep shock and saddened with the callous approach form the government part.
President Kashmir Chamber and Commerce Industries (KCCI) Faiz Ahmad Bakhshi said, “It is sad news. Business community was eager to have such a platform in Kashmir. It would have boosted the economy of the state.”
Kumar said the government will now “see what to do with the project”.