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Insights 2015

K. L. Jain: Investment potential in Rajasthan

Eighteen Princely States and 4 Chieftains amalgamated in 1947 to from what is today known as Rajasthan State. Rajasthan today is the one of the most promising investment destinations in the country. Besides abundant Land, Well developed infrastructure, peaceful labour and immense mineral wealth, Rajasthan also offers political stability with any political party being in power completing the term successfully, and that too with no trouble at any time during the tenure.

Rajasthan abuts five major States of India- Punjab, Haryana , Utter Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat, besides a significant portion of it  (about 4500 sq. km. area) falling into the National Capital Region (NCR). The Land-locked States of northern India access the Ports of Western Coast through Rajasthan.

The State has a well-developed Road network of National and State Highways. 21 National Highways, totaling 7,311 km. as of March 31, 2013 crisscross the States, thereby connecting it to all major States. The Intra-state road network comprised States Highways of 10,953 km., major  district of 10.225 km., other district roads of 24,713 km. and village roads of 1,39,319 km. 81.4% of the inhabited villages are connected by roads , as compared to the national average of 65%. Plans are afoot to connect all the villages by roads shortly.

Rajasthan had a total railway network spanning 5,784 km. as of March 31, 2011, comprising 4,602 km. of broad gauge. Rajasthan today is very well connected by trains to all metros, major cities as well as pilgrimage centres.

Rajasthan presently has 3 commercial airports at Jaipur, Udaipur and Jodhpur. At present, 26 flights are being conducted from Jaipur Airport which is likely to go up 44 shortly. Jaipur Airport is being upgraded to accommodate Jumbo 747-400 Series aircrafts. A new Airport is expected to come up in Kishangarh. Some new Airports are also being planned.

Rajasthan offers well developed information and communication facilities. Cellular and landline services and internet connectivity are available off the shelf across Rajasthan. A State-wide optic fibre backbone is in place.

A well-developed industrial infrastructure has been created in the State by the nodal agency, Rajasthan State Industrial and investment Corporation Ltd. (RIICO) which has developed323 industrial areas on app. 70,000 acre land. The industrial areas include Special Purpose Industrial Parks for stones, agro-processing, bio-tech, auto components, leather, IT, textile, apparel, wool and gems & jewellery, Export Promotion Industrial Parks at Jaipur, Neemrana (Alwar) and Boranada (Jodhpur), Special Japanese Zone in Neemrana, Special Economic Zones for gems and jewellery (Jaipur) and handicrafts (Jodhpur) apart from the world class multi-product Mahindra SEZ at Jaipur, On the lines of Japanese Zone, A Special Korean Zone is to come up at Ghilot  (Shahjahanpur). A number of private sector industrial areas have also been developed/planned.

The State presently has over Rs. 2 lakh crore investment in large and mediam scale industries employing about 1.80 lakh workers, and about Rs. 20.000 crore investment in small scale and micro enterprises generating employment to more than 17.25 lakh persons. Some of the major multinational corporations having units in Rajasthan include Lafarge, Honda, Genpact, Ericsson telecommunication, Gillette, Bosch &Lomb, MICO-Bosch, Electrolux Kelvinator, Mitsubishi Chemicals, Mikuni, St. Gobain Glass, Daikin Airconditioning, Nippon Pipe etc.

Rajasthan is taking firm steps to augment availability of power for the industrial, commercial ad domestic consumption. The total installed capacity by March 2013 was 11168 MW which was expected to go up to 18861 MW by 2014. Some of the 14 power projects with total installed capacity of 11590 MW which was approved for the 12th Five Year Plan (2012-2017) including 7750 MW in State Sector and 3840 MW  in private Sector, have been already commissioned and on the remaining projects, significant progress is being made. The State is also targeting to harness the renewable energy sources (solar, wind, bio-mass) in a very big way. Very soon, the state would become power surplus.

Huge oil and gas reserves have been found in Rajasthan which are being commercially exploited, with current production of 1.75 lakh barrels per day which is slated to go up to 3 lakh barrels per day shortly. An oil refinery is also being established jointly with Hindustan Petroleum Corpn. Ltd.

With about 39% of the Dedicated Freight Corridor (DFC) linking Delhi and Mumbai would pass through Rajasthan, throwing up great opportunities for industrial establishments along the route in the 150 km band on both sides of the DFC. About 60% of the State’s area falls within the project area of influence.

Rajasthan is one of the most picturesque parts of the country and the State is one of the most favoured tourist destinations of both domestic and foreign tourists. The State is dotted with rugged forts, beautiful palaces and havelies, lakes, museums, wildlife and bird sanctuaries, fairs and festivals, colorful culture, soulful music and delicious cuisine. Tourism accounts for about 15% of State’s GDP. The State also offers great opportunities for holding conferences and seminars, besides being a favourable destination for medical treatment as well as religious tourism.

Starting with a modest export of just 400 crore in 1990-91, The State now has export turnover of about 40,000. Major items of export include agro and food products, textile and apparel, gems & jewellery, Handicrafts, dimensional stones, non-ferrous metals, chemical &allied items, etc.

Rajasthan also has well developed social infrastructure of schools, colleges, universities, medical colleges, engineering and technical institutes, hospitals and nursing homes, banks.

Beside the above mentioned factors, The State offers polity and good governance, stable policies, competitive taxation policies, attractive investment incentives, etc. The present State Government has taken bold initiatives in implementing modified land acquisition policies, Labour reforms, Factories Act reforms etc. In fact, the State’s Single   Window dispensation is quite effective and has been given statutory backing by way of an act of the Legislative Assembly.

Government of Rajasthan is organizing Resurgent Rajasthan Summit to promote the State as a top investment destination in the region. The Summit, to be organized on 19-20 Nov. 2015 will be a made of strategic conferences, panel discussions, round table deliberations, presentation on investment opportunities and one-on-one business meetings. This event is a focus endeavor to realize the State’s vision of inclusive growth and long term Industrial development. Restaurants Rajasthan 2015 will bring together investment from all over the world (including CEOS and big business owners), high-level government officials, international dignitaries and representatives of foreign missions.

Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce may please also join.

Author is Secretary General of Rajasthan Chamber of Commerce

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