The Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) has decided to allot 75 acres at its industrial estate in Chakan to two Chinese manufacturers promising to bring in a total investment of about Rs 450 crore. The land is part of a larger 250-acre plot allotted to Beiqi Foton Motor Co Ltd, which designs and manufactures trucks, buses, SUVs and agriculture machinery. The Beijing-based company, also the world’s largest commercial vehicle maker, is yet to start work despite the land being allotted four years ago, citing an economic slowdown.
To compensate Beiqi Foton, MIDC will allot 75 acres to the company at an alternate location on the other side of its remaining land. Bhushan Gagrani, chief executive officer at MIDC, said, “The topography of the 250 acres that we had allotted to Beiqi Foton was such that the land was getting divided into two parcels. The alternate 75 acres that we are going to give the company would enable it to have a contiguous land parcel.”
MIDC is still in the process of acquiring alternate land at Talegaon to be given to Beiqi Foton. Of the 75 acres that MIDC would take back from Beiqi Foton, it would allot about 45 acres to China Lesso, which manufactures plastic pipes and pipe fittings. The corporation would allot the remaining 30 acres to Kingfa, which is also a manufacturer of plastic materials, an MIDC official said.
“While Kingfa would bring in an investment of about Rs 150 crore, Lesso’s investment would be around Rs 300 crore,” the official added. Beiqi Foton had signed an MoU with the Maharashtra government in 2011 for an investment of about Rs 1,700 crore to set up a plant with an annual capacity of about 1,00,000 vehicles.
The company had estimated to begin production of commercial vehicles by 2013, but was hit by a subsequent slowdown in the Indian commercial vehicles market. An MIDC official said that the corporation had given land to Foton in December 2011, and the company has until 2017 to develop it.