As business leaders and participants at the Punjab investors summit underlined the need to maintain continuity in government policies, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh said that he hoped that there will be policy stability even during periods of change in the ruling political dispensation.
A broad consensus on continuity of state policies emerged at a session on ‘Building Partnerships for Inclusive Growth’, as industry captains said that “investors love a state which is consistent with its policies”.
The delegates appreciated Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh for taking bold steps in this direction. They said this would bolster the investors’ confidence.
The session witnessed deliberations on the enormous opportunities of growth and development of industry in Punjab.
The session was moderated by the Director General of the Confederation of Indian Industry Chandrajit Banerjee and the panellists included Executive Chairman, East India Hotels PRS Oberoi, Managing Director and CEO, Kotak Mahindra Bank Uday Kotak, Vice-Chairman, Bharti Enterprise, Rakesh Mittal, Chairman, Hinduja Group Europe, Prakash Hinduja, Chairman, Hero Enterprise, Sunil Kant Munjal and Vice Chairman and Joint Managing Director, Vardhman Textiles, Suchita Jain.
Kotak, who described lending as an important facet of providing financial support for initiation of any new venture, said: “Investors love a state which is consistent with its policies, does not change taxes, does not change the rules of the game after somebody has invested whether it is a state or a country. It is extremely important.”
He said that their bank had extended loan facility to the new entrepreneurs to the extent of 150 per cent, against the total deposits of 100 per cent. He commended the state government’s initiative to hold this Summit, which would help garner more investments for the state.
Munjal said that “Punjab is an excellent state to make investments as it has abundant peace-loving and skilled labour, besides the best infrastructure in terms of affordable and uninterrupted power”, adding that “the enterprising nature of Punjabis is a catalyst of industrial growth in the state”.
He complimented CM Amarinder Singh for bringing “sweeping reforms in the new Industrial and Business Policy to attract investments in the state”.
Rakesh Bharti Mittal stressed on the need for quality education and skill development, which he said were prerequisite for a robust industrial base in any state. He said the Bharti Group had made significant investment in education and sanitation in the rural sector in Punjab. It was the need to diversify agriculture and provide self-sustainable marketing mechanism to procure the produce of the farmers at remunerative prices, he said.
Vardhman Group’s Suchita Jain said that the Group had played a pivotal role in the industrial development of the state and had forayed into steel, after textiles. She also informed that the company had recently tied up with Japan’s steel major Aiche to tap the automotive sector. She further revealed that Vardhman had engaged nearly 30 per cent woman workers in their units and were providing all basic facilities, including boarding, lodging and transportation to them.
Executive Chairman, East India Hotels, PRS Oberoi said that tourism and hospitality was the major sector for development of any state, and Punjab had tremendous religious tourism potential, which could be optimally utilised.
To tackle the menace of pollution causes due to burning of crop residue, Prakash Hinduja offered world-class technology, procured from the United States, Japan and Israel.
Earlier, Japanese Ambassador Satoshi Suzuki thanked Captain Amarinder for extending invitation to his country to be a part of this mega event. He hoped that the summit would prove to be a healthy platform for building partnerships between Punjab and Japan in several emerging sectors.