Hoping to give an impetus to the plan to set up 100 smart cities across the country, finance minister Arun Jaitley on Monday said that state governments should consider emulating the concept of the Gujarat International Finance Tec (GIFT) –City.
“Different state governments would be well advised to send their teams to study this success story,” he wrote in a Facebook post. The finance minister had on April 10 inaugurated the GIFT City and unveiled regulations for the country’s first international financial centre.
Jaitley pointed out that land has been leased to each financial institution and other developers for just a token amount and there will be no cost to the exchequer in developing the city.
“The joint venture company would be paid Rs 1,250 per sq ft (psf) for commercial development and Rs 250 psf for each social sector development. This will account for the initial investment made by the joint venture company, the cost of land and result in a net savings to the joint venture company. Effectively, this will be a smart city with global infrastructure, a financial centre, with people living in there. This is achieved with no cost to the public exchequer,” he said.
While the plan for setting up the GIFT City was conceived by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his stint as Gujarat chief minister, Jaitley in the Union Budget 2015-16 had announced that regulations for the city to become a international financial centre would be finalised.
Since then, the RBI, market regulator Sebi and insurance watchdog Irda have already announced their regulatory mechanism for the financial sector operations. Jaitley further noted that while infrastructural facilities are located underground, the tap water in the city is purified to become drinking water and the air conditioning is maintained through water chillers.