The main objectives of the SEZ Act, 2005 are:-
(i) generation of additional economic activity
(ii) promotion of exports of goods and services
(iii) promotion of investment from domestic and foreign sources
(iv) creation of employment opportunities
(v) development of infrastructure facilities
In addition to seven Central Government Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and 12 State/Private Sector SEZs set up prior to the enactment of SEZ Act, 2005, formal approval has been accorded to 582 proposals out of which 382 SEZs have been notified. A total of 148 SEZs are already exporting. Physical exports from the SEZs have increased from Rs. 2,20,711 crore approximately in 2009-10 to Rs. 3,15,868 crore approximately in 2010-11, registering a growth of 43.11%. The total physical exports from SEZs as on 30th September, 2011 i.e. in the first half of the current financial year, has been to the tune of Rs. 1,76,479.69 crore approximately registering a growth of 26.20% over the exports of corresponding period of the previous financial year. As per provisions of the SEZ Rules, 2006, an approval is valid for a period of three years within which time effective steps are to be taken by the Developer to implement the approved proposal. On a request received from the Developer, the Board of Approval can further extend the validity.