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Summit ends with promises worth Rs 12 lakh crore

Nearly 8,500 memoranda of understanding (MoUs) projecting an investment of Rs 12,00,000 crore were signed during the two-day Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors’ Summit 2009,the state government informed.

Written by Express News Service | Ahmedabad |
January 14, 2009 3:09:47 am

8,500 MoUs signed in two days; pledged investment to generate 25 lakh jobs in Gujarat

Nearly 8,500 memoranda of understanding (MoUs) projecting an investment of Rs 12,00,000 crore were signed during the two-day Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors’ Summit (VGGIS) 2009,the state government informed. The investment pledged will offer employment opportunities to the tune of 25 lakh.

Chief Minister Narendra Modi said at the valedictory session on Tuesday that the investment pledged this year was higher than the cumulative investment in the last three summits.

“You can see investment coming to Gujarat even in the backdrop of the slowdown,” he said. He maintained that VGGIS has redefined the current economic crisis. “Call it the vibrancy or the stability provided by Gujarat,” he added.

Indirectly referring to reports that underlined the failure rates of earlier VGGIS melas despite signing many MoUs,Modi said his government could not be faulted. “If an entrepreneur wants to invest money here,we help him. There is not a single case where the investor has said that they are withdrawing their project because they have a problem with the government. Therefore,if the projects are not implemented due to the investor,we should not be held responsible,” he said.

Modi also said that the 2011 summit would be even bigger than this year. “I want to make this summit as big as the World Economic Forum,in terms of content and size.”

Meanwhile,Anil Ambani said it was the second time that he was invited to the summit. “Gujarat is different. The environment and the mood here is very different from the rest of the world,” he said. He also went on to rework the RACE formula that Modi had put forth for getting the better of the slowdown as ‘respect,attitude,cleverness,and execution’.

The government claims
* Delegates from 45 countries
* 600 foreign delegates
* 150 business meetings
* 90,000 visitors
* 75 eminent political

VGGIS titbits
‘MoU’ch ado about nothing

“Gujarat ma 2003 thi jetla mota mota MoU sign thaya hata tenathi ghano vikas thayo chhe. Aa je vaat chaali rahi chhe ke MoU falibbhut nathi thaya. Aa badhu khotu chhe. Gujarat no vikas batave chhe ke MoU ketla safal rahya chhe. Etla maate tamara samajh ane tamara anubhav thi MoU sign karo” (There has been great development in Gujarat due to all the big,big MoUs signed since 2003. This talk of the MoUs not materialising is all false. Gujarat’s development demonstrates how successful these MoUs have been. So,use your wisdom and experience and sign MoUs). This was one of the loudspeaker announcements obviously targeting locals who had been reading reports about the actual rate of success of the earlier VGGIS melas,on the concluding day . The announcement kept blaring near the CM’s office at the summit venue.

Brothers at arm’s length
Speculations about both Ambani brothers sharing the dais with Modi only proved half true. Share they did but not together. While Mukesh Ambani attended the summit on the first day,the younger sibling,Anil arrived on the concluding day to attend the valedictory function. Thus,the brothers not only maintained proximity to Modi,but also kept their distance from each other.

Guests were ‘hardly’ welcome
Different state ministers graced the dais at MoU signing ‘ceremonies’ to welcome guests. A senior minister at one such ‘ceremony’ said,“I hardly welcome you all…” No one protested,of course.

From Uganda,with love
Semakula Kiwanuka,minister of state for finance,Uganda,almost did a Modi on the first day. After the customary praises for his hosts,Kiwanuka went on to say that the days of Idi Amin being over,the Gujarati community in Uganda was hale and hearty. Then he spoke of the excellent investment opportunities for Gujaratis in Uganda. He,of course,did not forget to mention that Uganda would invest in India too.

Experience matters
SRF chairman Arun Bharatram could not be more forthright unlike other speakers on the inauguration day. He declared his company would invest Rs 3,000 crore and,“it may go up based on experience.”

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