Himachal succeeds in attracting investors

North Gazette News/ Shimla
The state government has succeeded in attracting the investors to invest in the hill state of Himachal Pradesh. The die-hard efforts of state government particularly Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh has brought good results.

A government spokesman on Saturday informed that held in Investors’ Meet led by Virbhadra Singh, Chief Minister along with 15 senior state government officials at Bengaluru in Karnataka late Friday evening showcased the advantages that State had on offer including pro industry policy initiatives, tax incentives, availability of land, power, water, skilled labour, single window clearance among others.
Interacting with top industry leaders in Karnataka, the Chief Minister built a strong case to promote Himachal as a preferred investment destination and attract investments in the sectors like Tourism, Food Processing, IT & ITES, Pharmaceutical, Hydro power, Automobiles, Auto Components and Electronics manufacturing etc.

In his address, Chief Minister gave an open invitation to industries from Karnataka to invest in Himachal, assuring them of complete support from government side. He said that the unique geo-physical features of Himachal Pradesh and its strategic location for meeting the demand of the northern markets and demographic features, offer a unique set of conditions for potential investors.

The objective of this meet was to broaden the base of our industries in our state, said the Chief Minister. Emphasizing on the advantage the State has to offer, he said that the development that has taken place so far would reveal the investment potentials in new areas as well where H.P has a definite comparative advantage. The State has comparatively higher per capita income of Rs. 83,899 at current prices.

With regards to social indicators, its literacy rate is 82.82 percent which is the highest in this region. The state per capita public expenditure on general education, at Rs. 1391 is one of the highest in the country. In addition, quality educational institutions in the state churn out about 60,000 students annually, giving Himachal a quality skilled work force.

In the field of health infrastructure, the state again is the best in this region with the highest per capita public expenditure of Rs.377.
Virbhadra Singh, added that his government was committed to infrastructure development and despite geographical constraints no part of the state was unconnected as of now. He said that the telecommunication infrastructure of the state was one of the best in the country besides that all villages have electricity and we were a power surplus State.

Raising concern over the binding up of Planning commission, the Chief Minister said that no other agency had been constituted and no action plan had come into action in place of planning Commission of India. He said that the financial allocation has been stopped midway adding that he would urge the Government of India to constitute another body in place of Planning Commission so that adequate compensation be made and financial assistance be provided to the State to meet out their developmental activities.
“Due to change in regimes, difficulties do arise and if any Government plans to change or scrap some policies it must announce replacement simultaneously and on the very same day” he said.

Industrialization has been a thrust sector and the Government has not exhausted its capabilities and there was a long journey for us to go to fully develop Himachal as a dream place of the investors, said he.
The complaints pertaining to delay in formalities and clearances have been addressed now and If any one wants to sell the unit to someone else, the modalities have been relaxed under section 118 of HP Land Tenancy Act. If Manipal University wants to invest and open an institute of repute quality education in Himachal, we welcome the move, said the Chief Minister.

Mukesh Agnihotri, Industries, Labour & Employment Minister stressing on ‘investment by invitation’ said that the the State Government has envisioned transforming Himachal as the most preferred destination in the country for the entrepreneurs. He added that the State electricity regulator had already announced freezing of the power tariff upto 2018 at one fixed rate and that the rates of power in Himachal were 20 to 30 percent lower than bordering States in Northern India, which will act as a fillip to industry in the state. He assured the TVS industrial Unit to all possible help adding that leading Ranbaxy Pharma Unit has nine units in the country and out of which five were in the State.

The Minister listed the major investing units in the State. He assured that all the clearances were being given within 90 days strictly and urged the entrepreneurs to come forward and the Government has enough land bank and deemed permission would be there for setting up industrial units through Single window system.

Sudhakar Pai, Past Chairman, CII, Karnataka State Council & Managing Director, Kurlon Ltd said that Himachal Pradesh has emerged as a role model of development in the country and it has immense potential to emerge as one of the most economically developed state in India. Himachal Pradesh is a leader in hill area development, agriculture and horticulture revolution and it offers wide range of fiscal and policy incentives to provide conducive milieu to foster investments and development of industries. The hard working & enterprising nature of its populace coupled with the end to end linkages that the state provides in sectors like Tourism, Light engineering, Food Processing & of late in sunrise sectors of IT, Electronics, Bio Sciences, Infrastructure, etc. offer significant opportunities for Industry & Investors to have a footprint in this state.

M/s Knk Private limited dealing in renewable, Bio-tech inc, Education and training offered to invest in Solar energy sector and proposed a project worth Rs 500 crore for which the Government has agreed in principle.
An interaction session was also held on the occasion and many queries of the investors were solved there and then.