Modi presents 'advantage Gujarat'

Modi presents 'advantage Gujarat'

Woos Karnataka industrialists, laying out a red carpet strewn with goodies

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi addresses the National Quality Summit 2010 in Bangalore on Thursday. dh Photo

“In Gujarat, the government has no business to do business, everything is done by the private sector,” Modi told a gathering of representatives of business houses and industry at a road show jointly organised by the CII and the Gujarat Government. He extended them an invitation to participate in the fifth edition of Vibrant Gujarat Summit scheduled to be held on January 12-13 next year.

“This time we are looking beyond the State and invite all the States to participate in our growth story”, Modi said. The Vibrant Gujarat Summit, held biennially since 2003, has been a major success, attracting investment proposals worth over $370 billion.

Modi said Karnataka dominated in automobile and auto component, engineering, electronics, steel and IT sectors, while Gujarat is ahead in pharmaceutical, textiles, cement, paper, diamond cutting and processing. “The business community of both States can synergise their strengths and complement each other’s expertise,” he said.

Sprinkling his address with ample doses of the “Gujarat model” of governance, Modi said
his administration is presently looking beyond  industrial estates, Special Economic Zones and special clusters.

 “We are currently working on a much bigger concept - Special Investment Regions (SIRs) - which involves massive urbanisation of an area where residents have the advantage of walking to work,” he said. Twelve SIRs are being developed, including one at Dholera, 80 kilometres from Ahmedabad near the coast coming up on 80,000 hectares.

Replying to queries, Modi said Gujarat proposes to evolve a special package for the Small and Medium Enterprise sector with zero-defect manufacturing and best packaging by common ‘Made in Gujarat’ brand, with stress on skilled manpower development and skill upgradating network.

There was a bit of wit, too. An entrepreneur in the audience said a delegation of banking investors from Italy had evinced keen interest in Gujarat and sought to know from Modi whether they were welcome.

“It is a very significant development. Now, even Italy wants to invest in Gujarat,” Modi said with a sly smile and a brief pause, sending the audience into peals of laughter.

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