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States Woo NRIs to Fund Financial Growth


States Woo NRIs to Fund Financial Growth

Last updated: March 21 2012
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  • States Woo NRIs to Fund Financial Growth

    Never mind the policy paralysis at the centre, states are going all out to woo investors with a host of friendly policies and development initiatives.

    Every state, it seems, now wants to become the top destination for investments. That can only be a good thing in a country where economic development— and jobs — has, for too long, been concentrated in certain regions only.

    Chief Ministers Narendra Modi (Gujarat), Ashok Gehlot (Rajasthan) and Arjun Munda (Jharkhand) are seen at the dais.
    Over the weekend, several state government officials came together at the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas, a convention for Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and Persons of Indian Origin (PIO), held in Jaipur. Over 1,700 delegates from 65 countries took part in the convention, according to various reports.

    At the event, states showcased what they had to offer for investors and the development initiatives they had already taken.

    Here are some of the highlights:

    Jharkhand: A state blessed with rich mineral resources, sought investments from the overseas community in areas such as hospitality, healthcare, green technology in manufacturing and air taxi services, according to an IANS report.

    Chief Minister Arjun Munda said Jharkhand had also marked out 800 acres for a Knowledge City and was investing heavily in improving the social and physical infrastructure. An IT-Special Economic Zone at Jamshedpur and an IT hub around the capital city of Ranchi are also in the works.

    Kerala: The southern state is seeking investments in IT and IT-enabled services, tourism, healthcare, trade and retailing, as well as infrastructure development. Of course, for Kerala, NRIs already play a huge role: remittances from NRIs to Kerala are about Rs 49,965 crore — 22 percent of the state’s gross domestic product, according to a IANS report in The Times of India.

    Chief Minister Oomen Chandy said Kerala also planned to organise a global investor meet called “Emerging Kerala” in September this year to woo investments from the diaspora, the report added.

    Gujarat: Chief Minister Narendra Modi said the state had already launched initiatives in non-conventional energy, agriculture, industrial growth, education, as well as introduced a solar policy. It also highlighted the fact that it had established the University of Forensic Science.

    Rajasthan: It is seeking investments to develop high-quality road and transport infrastructure. Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot highlighted the state’s achievements in power generation; he also noted that the proposed Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridors would boost manufacturing in Rajasthan. About 39 percent of the corridor passes through Rajasthan. “Infrastructure will be developed in a band of 150 kilometres on both sides of the corridor,” said Gehlot, according to the IANS report.

    State officials also added that other benefits of investing in the state include single-window clearance facilities and a public services guarantee scheme, according to The Times of India. Plus, potential investors could also attest their own documents, without requiring a gazetted officer.

    Bihar: State Industry Minister Renu Kumari Kushwaha said her state had made significant improvement in infrastructure and in the law and order situation. “Things are improving fast in Bihar. You come and invest. We will offer all type of possible help,” said Kushwaha, according to the IANS report.

    Of course, it still remains to be seen whether investors actually take up these tempting offers.

    According to media reports, many potential investors noted that investing in the country was still hampered by bureaucracy and lack of facilities. While the intent was there, implementation was lacking, they said.

    Red-tapism remains one of the biggest hurdles to large-scale investments. Another issue that bothers investors is corruption — and rightly so. At the event, many delegates complained of endemic corruption and the need to bribe officials to get any process moving. Unless both these issues are tackled comprehensively, don’t expect investments to come flooding in.

    More labour friendly laws will also be required in some states, while others will need to step up investments in education and healthcare to ensure they have an educated workforce capable of meeting the demands of any industry that sets up base in the state.

    Investors will also need some assurances that changes of governments will not overturn policies that the previous government had initiated.

    Still, it does point to one fact: states are starting to compete aggressively with each other in attracting investments, local and foreign.

    And if nothing else, at least that will keep them on their toes in ensuring some improvement in economic, social and physical infrastructure efficiency.
  • #2


    Re : States Woo NRIs to Fund Financial Growth

    U should bring this over the Investing from the United States thread, we could certainly benefit


    Have any questions or thoughts about this?