|Elevation||31 m (102 ft)|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
Santacruz Electronics Export Processing Zone (SEEPZ) is a Special Economic Zone in Mumbai, India. Situated in the Andheri East area, it is subjected to liberal economic laws as compared to the rest of India to promote rapid economic growth using tax and business incentives and attract foreign investment and technology. Seepz was created in 1973 and was seen as export processing zone. Since then many other SEZ’s have been created in rest of India. SEEPZ mainly houses Electronic Hardware Manufacturing Companies, Software Companies and jewellery exporters of India. More than 40 percent of India’s total jewelry exports ($2,222.31 million) out of $5,210.69 million during year 2006-2007 came from units within SEEPZ. Despite its name, it is not located near the suburb of Santacruz, rather it is located closer to Andheri that lies further north.
More than 150 units operate in SEEPZ. Prominent companies that have offices within Seepz include: Core Jewellery, Navteq, Renaissance Jewellery Ltd, GoldStar Jewellery Pvt. Ltd, Gitanjali Gems Ltd, Vaibhav Gems Ltd, D’damas for Jewelry. IT Companies include Blue Star Infotech Ltd, Praxis Interactive Services Ltd, CGI Group Inc., Thirdware, iGATE Computer Systems, Tata Consultancy Services, Geodesic Limited, Trigyn Technologies Limited, Syntel Limited, Datamatics Global Services Limited, Zycus Infotech Pvt Ltd., buildings in SEEPZ are called Standard Design Factories (SDF).
The SEZ is a high security entry zone. Employees of various companies need to have permanent SEEPZ gate pass to gain entry. Visitors need special permits to enter. Due to these hassles government proposed making SEEPZ a Free Trade Zone(FTZ) in 1999. However, gate pass and visitor pass rules continue till date. Making SEEPZ a FTZ meant that it would be treated as outside the customs zone of India. This meant no excise or customs duty will be levied on raw material but companies would also not be able to sell their products in domestic market.
Due to its business importance and high concentration of work force SEEPZ has remained the prime target of criminals and terrorists. A high-profile case occurred in 1999 when diamonds worth 10 crore (US$1.5 million) and gold worth 39 lakh (US$60,000) were smuggled out and sold in local market. After the 28 July 2003 Mumbai Bus Bombing major stockpile of explosives was also found near SEEPZ. Women employees working in SEEPZ during the night shifts are entitled transport facility between home and office from their employers.
Within the premises is located the ruins of an abandoned Portuguese church, St. John the Baptist Church, Mumbai built in 1579. The church also lay in ruins for years and access to it is restricted since SEEPZ was formed. After much political controversy, it was handed back to Fr Rodney Esperance of Bombay Archdiocese in 2003 in a ceremony organized by Maharashtra Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde. A lake and several canteens are located inside the SEEPZ premises.
- SEEPZ profile on Forbes[dead link]
- Seepz Sez: Moving Forward Despite Constraints. Accessmylibrary.com (2004-06-30).
- SEEPZ news. Idexonline.com.
- SEEPZ entry. Idexonline.com.
- SEEPZ to become free trade zone. The Indian Express.
- Another accused arrested SEEPZ case. The Indian Express.
- NSG team arrives in Mumbai. Outlookindia.com.
- HC orders SEEPZ to provide transport for women. The Indian Express.
- Historic Seepz church still remains a neglected monument. Cybernoon.com.
- St. John’s opens for mass. Daily News and Analysis.
- CM gives SEEPZ church back to archdiocese. Accessmylibrary.com (2003-09-29).