17 state-run firms to invest Rs.140,000 crore: PM

17 state-run firms to invest Rs.140,000 crore: PM

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Tuesday said 17 central public sector undertakings (CPSUs) will invest Rs.140,000 crore in the coming year.

"I am extremely happy to learn that 17 of our largest CPSUs have committed to investment plans amounting to Rs.140,000 crore in the coming year," he said, addressing a function here.

"Public investment is particularly needed at a time, when the country is facing a difficult global environment, and looking to domestic drivers of growth," the prime minister said, adding that he would encourage the CPSU to also boost capital investments.

Investment from CPSUs is mainly concentrated in manufacturing, mining, electricity and services sector. Manmohan Singh said that the country's mining sector should step up production of coal, petroleum and natural gas as the cost of importing these minerals have shot up.

"We must step up our performance in mining, particularly in the production of coal, petroleum and natural gas," he said.  The prime minister urged CPSUs in the mining sector to explore opportunities for acquiring foreign mineral assets as recently a proposal for acquisition of raw material assets abroad had been approved by the cabinet.

He also emphasised the need to expand the share of manufacturing sector in the country's gross domestic product (GDP) which currently stands at 15 percent. "I would urge the  CPSEs (central public sector enterprises) in these (manufacturing) areas to embark upon ambitious plans of expansion to make the target of 12 to 14 percent growth in the manufacturing sector a living reality," he said.

The prime minister also stressed that the CPSEs need to focus on good corporate governance, strategic planning, innovation, research and development (R&D) and greater attention to quality control for staying competitive.

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