Narendra Modi woos Japanese,slams Manesar

Chief Minister Narendra Modi went all out to woo Japanese industry to invest in Gujarat,promising them an environment where they “feel at home”.

Written by Express News Service | Gandhinagar | Published: July 24, 2012 5:01:33 am

On a visit to Japan at a time when unprecedented violence at its car manufacturing plant at Manesar in Haryana has forced the Maruti Suzuki India Limited to declare a lockout there,Chief Minister Narendra Modi went all out to woo Japanese industry to invest in Gujarat,promising them an environment where they “feel at home”.

In Tokyo,Modi condemned the violence at Manesar plant,stating such incidents should not happen anywhere in the world. “Anywhere,it should not happen. Human safety is the priority and I do feel (for) those who have lost their lives,” a government release quoted him as saying.

Maruti Suzuki India (MSI),an arm of Suzuki Motor Corp,had earlier this year announced an investment of Rs 4,000 crore to set up a new manufacturing facility in Gujarat in addition to its existing facilities at Manesar and Gurgaon in Haryana.

Modi claimed Maruti Suzuki India’s plan for its plant in Gujarat had nothing to do with labour unrest at its Manesar plant. “The company’s proposal to set up its second plant in Gujarat is a standalone decision. The Gujarat government wishes that every state should develop industrially. I am sure the Haryana government is capable enough to handle the issue and they will handle it.”

However,the chief minister tried to hardsell Gujarat as an investment destination. “It has the least unemployment in India. Moreover,there is complete co-operation between the industry and the workforce. There is almost no man-days loss,” the release quoted Modi as saying.

“I wish that Japanese should feel at home in Gujarat. We are committed to creating those conditions,” Modi said,delivering his first speech at an investment seminar organised by JETRO (Japan External Trade Organisation).

During his visit,Modi will be meeting top executives of major Japanese companies like Sumitomo,IHI Corporation,BTMU,Mitsubishi Corporation and Suzuki. He will also meet officials of Hitachi,whose subsidiary Hitachi Home & Life Solutions Ltd has a plant at Kadi where there has been strike by workers for the last one-month-and-a-half.

In the JETRO speech uploaded on his website,Modi says,“After 2007,mutual exchanges between Japan and Gujarat have become a regular affair. It appears that Gujarat has become the second home of Japanese people.”

The CM reiterated plans to set up two Japanese townships,which will include Japanese language schools,Japanese restaurants and golf courses.

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