Following in the footsteps of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, the Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party government in Punjab is leaving no stone unturned to make the state the most preferred investment destination in the country.
After the recently concluded Progressive Punjab Investment Summit, held in Mohali on December 9 & 10, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal claimed that his government had signed MoUs with 117 international and domestic companies for investments to the tune of Rs.65,000 crore.
If the MoUs signed during the two-day event, which was attended by several industry bigwigs like Mukesh Ambani, L.N. Mittal, Rakesh Bharti Mittal, Sunil Munjal, Y.C. Deveshwar, Onkar Singh Kanwar and Malwinder Mohan Singh, do actually lead to the much-needed investment flowing in, almost three lakh youth in the state could get employment.
The state government is hoping that serious work on the MoUs will commence in the next four-six months. To ensure that the projects committed do not merely remain on paper, a number of measures have already been initiated. These include setting up of teams to assist the business houses and handle their land requirements, plans to create a 10,000-acre land bank in addition to the land available in Mohali and Ludhiana for catering to the needs of the industry, and decision to conduct monthly review meetings so that the projects do not face hurdles, and as a result undue delays, during the course of implementation. The industrial sector has been assured of uninterrupted power supply and reduction in the power tariff. The Punjab Bureau of Investment Promotion, which was set up recently, will provide hassle free clearances and approvals for setting up new industries through a single window clearance system.
The deputy chief minister announced during the summit that three large convention centres would be established at Mohali, Amritsar and Ludhiana. He also informed that all villages in the state would be connected through 4G service in the next six months.
Mohali is fast emerging as a major IT hub. Recently, a Taiwanese IT company announced that its headquarters would be moved from Noida in Uttar Pradesh to Mohali in Chandigarh. Several global IT tech giants have already set up shop in the district. IT services major Infosys proposes to set up a 100-acre campus having initial capacity of 25,000 employees at the 1,700-acre Knowledge Park, currently under development.
With a view to encourage the setting up of new industries in the state, the Punjab government earlier this month unveiled a package of fiscal incentives for large manufacturing sector units, small and medium units, integrated textile units, electronics hardware and IT industry, agro industrial and food processing sector, tourism sector and health sector.