Amit Mitra unveils raft of investment opportunities in West Bengal
Speaking at the Bengal Leads 2015 – Investment Roadshow at FICCI’s Federation House, Mitra invited the business community to actively participate in the ‘Bengal Global Business Summit’ on January 7-8, 2015 in Kolkata.
Bengal Finance Minister highlighted some of the achievements of the Government of Bengal in order to make the industry aware of the vast pool of investment opportunities.
The West Bengal Government boasts of doubling its industrial production and the State Domestic Product from the time it assumed office.
The State also doubled its tax collections from Rs. 21000 crore to Rs. 40,000 in 2013-14 and aims to reach Rs. 45000 crore in the current financial year.
He said that West Bengal in 2013-14 also secured the first position in bank lending to MSMEs.
The State Government has made available 4000 acres of land for investment and another 3000 will be ready for investment in the next six months.
Play and plug infrastructure is being created, apart from greenfield parks in both hardware and software.
In a presentation Krishna Gupta, Managing Director, WBIDC, Government of West Bengal, outlined that West Bengal is an ideal investment destination being well connected and can act as a gateway to South East Asia & North- East region.
It also shares its international frontiers with Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan and the hinterland consisting of mineral rich states of Bihar, Jharkhand and Odisha.
He said that the state also enjoys a rapidly growing economy, vast expanding consumer market, best in the country in terms of quality and availability of power, low cost of living and large reservoir of scientific and technical manpower along with India’s best educational institutions.
Gupta said that to give impetus to focus sectors the State Government announced a number of industry-friendly policies to facilitate industrialization such as Investment and Industrial Policy, 2013; MSME Policy, 2013; Textile Policy, 2013; Information & Communication Technology (ICT) Policy, 2012; ICT Incentive Policy, 2012; PPP Policy, 2012 and Food Processing Policy, 2011.
Sidharth Birla, President, FICCI, dwelt on some of the important changes noticed by him in West Bengal as an investor.
These changes mostly fall in the domain of policy and ease of doing business.
“The State Government has not only come up with a new West Bengal Investment & Industrial Policy 2013 but also various sector specific policies in the areas like Textiles, MSME, ICT, to provide fillip to the industrial investments in the State. Many significant measures have been taken to improve the ‘Ease of Doing Business’ in West Bengal by introducing time bound, process driven and ICT enabled systems to bring more transparency and reduce red tape,” he said.
He stated that West Bengal has rich agricultural and mineral resources.
The State has well developed rail, road and port infrastructure. Further, the qualified and skilled manpower coming out of centers of excellence and various technical institutes is a great asset.
The cumulative impact of these factors makes West Bengal as one of the ideal destinations for industries like IT & ITES, food processing, textiles, leather goods, MSME, tourism and many other sectors.
Harshavardhan Neotia, Vice President, FICCI, said that West Bengal has emerged as one of the favored investment destinations for investors.
With the new policies in place the State Government has ensured ‘ease of doing business’, which is a big step towards encouraging investors.