Ease of Doing Business

Government of Kerala (GoK) has been taking many earnest and proactive steps to improve the ease of doing business environment in the State. The State had been undertaken with specific emphasis on simplification of the existing Acts & Rules and introduction of information technology to make governance more efficient, effective, transparent and user-friendly. The main aim has been to identify specific areas for improvement in various aspects of doing business in the State

The various initiatives undertaken as a part of the Ease of Doing Business including publishing the omnibus Kerala Investment Promotion and Facilitation Act, 2018, amending the 7 Acts and 10 Rules, have ensured the creation of an enabling environment for establishing and running of enterprises in the State. The Government has ensured elimination of redundant regulations, simplification of clearance procedures, reduction in timelines for clearances, established Standard Operating Procedures, increased duration of clearances and establishing an Investment Promotion and Facilitation Cells across the State and many more investor friendly initiatives.

Government of Kerala also implemented a web-based application named Kerala Single Window Interface for Fast and Transparent Clearance (KSWIFT), which is a platform for all future transactions with the Government on the issue of granting licences and approvals in a time bound manner. Presently, the services of the 16 Departments / Agencies are being made available in KSWIFT, wherein all the clearance/approvals can be submitted through a unified Common Application Form (CAF). This application will ensure Fast, Transparent and Time bound clearances and will reduce drastically the physical touch points. As part of strengthening and expanding the KSWIFT, Government intends to carry out the second phase of KSWIFT which includes Renewal services; more features like Central Inspection System, land allotment, incentives and adding of new departments/Agencies.

Government of Kerala has also implemented an Invest Kerala Portal, which is a single window facilitator for investment promotion for prospective and aspiring investors. The Invest Kerala Portal is the common repository for land bank details, investor wizard, various services, schemes, lenders etc.

Apart from the aforesaid reform initiatives the Government has brought in further reform initiatives to spur the industrial growth by establishing a trusted environment between the Government and Entrepreneurs and they are:

  1. Enacted “The Kerala Micro Small and Medium Enterprises Facilitation Act, 2019” to exempt all projects having capital investments up to Rs 10 crores. and not falling under red category as notified by Pollution Control Board from licenses, approvals, permits etc. under various Acts for the first three years.
  2. Enacted “The Kerala Industrial Single Window Clearance Boards and Industrial Township Area Development (Amendment) Act, 2019” to strengthening of existing Single Window Boards at State, District and Industrial Parks by bringing amendments to the Kerala State Single Window Clearance Boards and Industrial Township Area Development Act, 1999

With policies in place, the state government also identified priority sectors as the key drivers of growth for the years to come. The Government has ensured setting up of dedicated industrial parks for each of the priority sectors enabling an all encompassed environment for industries in these sectors to start business. The industrial parks would be the most prestigious projects of the State Government, promoting manufacturing, assembling units and R&D centers. Also, the State Government have put in place schemes for subsidy, grants etc. for industries being set up in the State. The state has developed allottable industrial land of over 2000 acres.

Over and above the industrial advantages Kerala is now well connected with 4 international airports at Trivandrum, Cochin, Kozhikode and Kannur and two International transshipment Container Terminals at Cochin and Trivandrum. The Government has put the right foot forward in leveraging the key strengths of the State viz., first fully digital State, Biodiversity, Excellent law and order situation across the State, development of Core Sectors such as Tourism, IT/ITES, Plantations etc.

The State with a high Human Development Index has ensured specific focus on skill development initiatives for different industry domains. The initiatives to improve employability of workforce by the State Government has ensured that Kerala has achieved one among the top 5 ranks in the India Skills Report 2018.

Kerala is now transforming itself as an emerging destination for setting up enterprises and doing business. The State has become a center point for investors, with its advantages of abundant skilled labour, excellent industrial infrastructure, connectivity and industry friendly rules and regulations. The State has been able to implement reforms to satisfy the purposes of domains of digitization, delegation and disclosures.

MSME Reforms

NEW 1. The Kerala Micro Small Medium Enterprises Facilitation​ Act, 2019. Click to Download

NEW 2 The Micro Small Medium Enterprises Facilitation Rules, 2020 Click to Download

Amendments to Acts
  • The Kerala Panchayat Raj Act, 1994
  • The Kerala Municipality Act, 1994
  • The Kerala Lifts and Escalators Act, 2013
  • The Kerala Groundwater (Control and Regulation) Act, 2002
  • The Kerala Head Load Workers Act, 1978
  • The Kerala Shops and Commercial Establishment Act, 1960
  • The Kerala State Single Window Clearance Boards and Industrial Township Area Development Act, 1999 Click to Download

NEW The Kerala Industrial Single Window Clearance Boards and Township Area Development (Amendmen) ​Act, 2019 Click to Download

Amendments to Rules

A. Department of Local Self Government

  • The Kerala Panchayat Raj (Issue of Licence to Dangerous and Offensive Trades and factories) Rules, 1996 Click to Download
  • The Kerala Panchayat Raj (Profession Tax) Rules, 1996 Click to Download
  • The Kerala Municipality (Registration of Private Hospitals and Private Paramedical Institutions) Rules, 1997Click to Download
  • The Kerala Panchayat Raj Building Rules, 2011 Click to Download
  • The Kerala Municipality Building Rules, 1999 Click to Download
  • The Kerala Municipality (Issue of License to Dangerous and Offensive Trade and factories) Rules 2011 Click to Download

B. Department of Labour

  • The Kerala Factories Rules, 1957 Click to Download
  • The Kerala Inter-State Migrant Workers (Regulation of Employment and Condition of Service) Rules, 1983 Click to Download
  • The Kerala Contract Labour(Regulation and Abolition) Rules, 1974 Click to Download
  • The Building and Construction Workers(Regulation of Employment and Condition of Service(Kerala)) Rules, 1998 Click to Download
  • The Kerala Motor Workers Rules, 1962 Click to Download
Government Orders, Circulars and Notifications

A. Department of Local Self Government.

1. Reduction in supporting document requirement - Only two documents required for obtaining Trade Licence.

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2. Third Party Certification for the issue of approvals.

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3. Timelines for the issue of construction permit.

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4. Joint site inspections by Departments/Agencies for the issue of building permit.

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5. Submission of inspection reports within 48 hours of completion of inspection for the issue of building permit.

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B. Department of Labour

1. Grading of shops, establishment and factories based on operational excellence.

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2. Formation of committees for grading of shops, establishment and factories based on operational excellence.

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3. Online system for availing services.

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C. Kerala State Pollution Control Board.

1. Auto renewal of consent to establish and consent to operate.

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2. Increased validity of consent to operate.

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3. Notification of white category of industries.

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4. Self-Certification for green category industries and delegation of power.

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5. Third Party certification and frequency of inspection.

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6. One time registration for white category industries.

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7. Implementation of online inspection framework.

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8. Post monitoring on continuous operation and maintenance of pollution control facilities in industries and establishments.

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9. Consent to Operate from Pollution Control Board - Self Certification for Green Category industries.

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D. Kerala State Electricity Board.

1. Only two documents required for obtaining electricity connection – proof of identity and proof of legal occupancy.

2. Simplification of application procedure for availing new electricity connection.

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3. Online application for availing new electricity connection.

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4. Timelines mandated for providing new electricity connection.

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E. Department of Taxes

1. Constitution of Authority for Advance Tax Ruling.

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2. Constitution of Appellate Authority for Advance Tax Ruling.

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F. Department of Legal Metrology.

1. Introduction of online inspection regime.

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G. General Government Orders.

1. Constitution of Investment Promotion Facilitation Cell at State and District Level.

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2. Central Inspection System - Constitution of Central Inspection System and Procedures.

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100 plus Kerala Advantage
Levies imposed by State and Local Bodies

1. Stamp Duty and Registration fees (Registration Department)

Existing Rates of Stamp Duty And Registration Fees Click to Download

2. Rate Schedules (Commercial Tax Department)

The Rates and Tariffs other than GST levied by the StateClick to Download

The Goods and Service Tax Rates and TariffsClick to Download

3. Tariff on Electricity (Kerala State Electricity Board)

Schedule of Tariffs for Retail Supply of Electricity by KSEB LtdClick to Download

4. Tax schedule and Fees (Motor Vehicle Department)

The Rates and Tariffs of tax levied on every motor vehicle used or kept for use in the StateClick to Download

Fees levied for Licenses, Permits and Other servicesClick to Download

5. List of Licenses and Fees (Kerala Excise Department)

The list of fees levied by the Department for Licensing areClick to Download

6. The tax rates and tariffs (Directorate of Urban Affairs, Local Self Government Department)

Permit Fees Schedule and Rates (under The Kerala Municipality Building Rules, 1999) Click to Download

Profession Tax Schedule and Rates (under The Kerala Municipality (Profession Tax) Rules, 2005)Click to Download

Service Tax Schedule and RatesClick to Download

7. The tax rates and tariffs (Directorate of Panchayat, Local Self Government Department)

The Tax Rates and Tariffs Click to Download