Goa

Goa Chief Minister invite NRI to invest in Infrastructure Projects

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Inviting the Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) to Goa, describing it as a state on the move, so as to invest in the region handsomely, Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar on Friday speaking at the 13th edition of ‘Pravasi Bharatiya Divas’ said that his government has identified thrust areas for encouraging investment proposals in Goa, which include knowledge-based industry, R&D centres and financial services, pharmaceuticals and bio-technology, integrated educational hubs, tourism, light engineering, aviation, aerospace and defence, information technology, hardware and electronics, and agro-based and food processing industries.

“We would particularly look forward to investment proposals in the infrastructure areas of power, transport, water and waste disposal,” he added, stating that for this purpose, there exist tools like Commissionerate of NRI Affairs headed by Dr Wilfred Mesquita and Economic Development Corporation with its special scheme for Non-resident Goans (NRGs), under which loan assistance is provided for acquiring fixed assets like land, building, plant and machinery for new micro, small, medium and large enterprises or for their expansion, modernisation and diversification.

The Chief Minister, delivering his address during the session ‘Investment opportunities in Indian states’ chaired by Home Minister Rajnath Singh said that Goa has been adjudged the most competitive state for business in India, and that he would like to credit the state’s enlightened and talented human resources, huge natural resources, progressive policies, pollution-free environment, captivating scenic beauty and salubrious year-round climate for this achievement.

The chief ministers of some prominent states including Prakash Singh Badal (Punjab),  Manoharlal Khattar (Haryana), Shivraj Singh Chouhan (Madhya Pradesh), Raghubar Das (Jharkhand), Anandiben Patel (Gujarat), Devendra Fadnavis (Maharashtra), N  Chandrababu Naidu (Andhra Pradesh) and Oomen Chandy (Kerala) also made brief presentations about investment opportunities in their respective states, during the particular session.

Speaking further, the Chief Minister said that his government has taken steps to protect the property rights of NRGs and PIOs of Goan origin, and for timely redressal of their grievances. “You can get in touch with our NRI  Cell for further details, including amendments in relevant statutes,” he assured.

Parsekar also informed the gathering about ‘Know Goa Programme’ (KGP) since 2008 for the benefit of Goan Diaspora Youth, who are not Indian nationals and have had no opportunities to discover Goa and India, their glorious past, exciting present and promising future. “Under this programme, we are annually sponsoring a 15-day visit to Goa, Delhi and Agra for the Goan Diaspora Youth in the age group of 18-28 years,” he said.

The Chief Minister also admitted that Goa received a tremendous setback in 2012 with the imposition of a blanket ban on extraction and transportation of its mining ore. “However, we have managed to strike a balance between our development needs and environmental concerns for sustained growth of our economy and have taken the necessary steps to recommence mining activity in the state, and further would like to gain from some of your expertise and knowledge in this area,” Parsekar maintained, stating that in order to diversify Goan economy by reducing dependence on sectors of mining and tourism, his government took a conscious decision to adopt the Goa Investment Policy 2014 under which the Goa Investment Promotion Board has been set up.

“And now we look forward to dovetail our efforts with the ‘Make in India’ campaign in a big way,” he said, adding that the Goa Investment Promotion Board is meant to provide assistance and facilitate the required approvals from the state government for forthcoming business ventures and make the process of investment simple, quick and purposeful through a transparent investor-government interface.

Observing that the Goa Broad Band Network (GBBN) has truly become the Info High-Way for Goa and has propelled it to become the number one state in the country in realising the National eGov Plan (NeGP), Parsekar stated that Panaji, the state capital, has been connected to both district headquarters, the taluka headquarters, and all the 189 village panchayats as well as 14 municipalities. “We have also nominated the department of industries to maintain liaison with the Ministry of External Affairs for investment and trade opportunities and queries, and further act as the nodal point specifically to deal with NRIs, who are keen to invest in eco-friendly projects in Goa having potential of generating employment opportunities,” he said.

 

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“I would like to mention that in addition to the existing international airport in Goa, we are undertaking construction of a Greenfield International Airport at Mopa in the state on PPP basis at an estimated cost of Rs 3,000 crore,” the Chief Minister said, informing that the construction work of the new airport will begin by December 2015, and the first phase of the airport is expected to be commissioned by December 2018. “This new airport in North Goa will have provisions for cargo facilities, aviation training institute and maintenance and repair operations,” he added, pointing out, “Furthermore, as per the state Civil Aviation Policy, we also intend to create an international aircraft hub at the existing Dabolim International Airport in South Goa by incentivising hub operators.”

On the departing note, Parsekar said that in addition to the guests from Russia, UK, Germany, Kazakhstan, Israel and Scandinavian countries attending the event, Goa would like to tap new potential tourist markets like Australia, New Zealand, Japan, USA, China, Canada and UAE. “I invite all of you to partner with us by extending an invitation on our behalf to at least five of your contemporary country men and women, to come and experience unforgettable Goa,” he concluded.

NT

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