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Global Investors’ Summit: J&K officials woo investors in financial capital

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MoU’s worth Rs 2,100 cr inked during roadshow in Mumbai

Srinagar/Mumbai, Feb 21: The newly formed union territory of Jammu and Kashmir on Friday inked Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) worth over Rs 2,100 crore during its investment summit roadshow in the city here.

"We want to maximise industrial growth and employment opportunities in Jammu and Kashmir. For this we are engaging in six city roadshows. Of this, we have already successfully concluded in Bengaluru, Kolkata and Mumbai," Jammu and Kashmir Principal Secretary Planning, Development and Monitoring Rohit Kansal told reporters here at an investor roadshow organised by CII.

"The roadshows will further cover cities like Hyderabad, Chennai, Ahmedabad in February and March," he said.

Led by Lieutenant Governor Girish Chandra Murmu, the officials including Chief secretary BVR Subramanyam pitched about the business possibilities in Kashmir Valley to India Inc.

Kansal said the union territory has signed around Rs 2,000 crore worth of non-binding MoUs in Kolkata, Rs 850 crore in Bengaluru and over Rs 2,100 crore in Mumbai.

J&K has identified 14 sectors, including horticulture, food processing, manufacturing, infrastructure, media and entertainment, film and tourism, to attract investments, he added.

Kewal Kumar Sharma, Advisor to Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir said, "We are in the final stages of designing an ambitious Industrial Promotion Policy 2020 in J&K, which will have elements like SGST reimbursement in full, attractive land policy, exemption from stamp duty, support for green industrialisation along with other benefits."

When asked about the ground situation in the union territory, he said it is much better than what it was a few months back.

"We're talking about investments in the long term. You're not talking about today, given today's situation (is) much better than what it was, let's say, a few months back. So things are improving, I don't see this becoming a problem for any investment," he added.

The Centre had in August revoked Article 370 to take away J&K's special status.

Sharma said J&K provides opportunities for Bollywood with religious and heritage sites, dense forests and waterfalls, among others.

"Jammu and Kashmir provides huge opportunities to set up film studios, film cities, film institutions, multiplexes with film exposed workforce as per new film tourism policy," he added.

J&K Commissioner Secretary Manoj Kumar Dwivedi said the union territory has a lot of inherent potential with appropriate climate for agriculture, vibrant tourism ecosystem and a huge land bank.

A series of round-table discussions led by Administrative Secretaries and HoDs were also organised on strategic sectors to seek investment for maximizing industrial growth and enhancing employment opportunities, an official press release said.

It said a video filming the investment potential of J&K was played followed by a detailed presentation by Commissioner Secretary, Industries & Commerce highlighting 14 focus sectors and initiatives taken by government to improve industrial ecosystem in Jammu and Kashmir.

It was followed by a video on pristine locations and tourism potential of Jammu and Kashmir which received wide appreciation from participants, the press release said.

Rohit Kansal, Principal Secretary Planning Development/Monitoring and Information made a presentation on film tourism.

Advisor Sharma applauded the investors for exuberance towards J&K government and asserted that J&K is ready for investment in view of attractive 14 sector specific policies, press release said.

Arun Kumar Mehta, Financial Commissioner, Finance, informed about status of economy of J&K, highlighting the growth in GST which at present is 40 percent. He emphasized upon huge scope and space for private sector investment in J&K, it said.

Kashmira Mewawala, Chairman, CII Maharashtra State Council, while addressing the participants focused on the strengths of J&K and briefed the audience that J&K has shown immense interest in providing an enabling environment and tap available opportunities in the road-show.

Vinod Haritwal, CEO Director Grauer and Weil (l) Ltd, shared his experiences of working in J&K on the occasion and allayed apprehensions of security related disturbances on the growth and profits in industrial sector in Jammu and Kashmir.

Prominent industries groups and leaders including representatives from Taj, Carnival Films, Volkswagen India, Hinduja, Ambuja Cements, Mahindra Holidays, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Bayer, Lark and others were present on the occasion.

The event was attended by more than 150 delegates. More than 30 B2G meetings were held across various sectors in which 24 MoUs valuing about Rs 2450 crores were signed during  the road-show, press release said.

It said the upcoming road-shows will further cover other industrial and economic hubs like Hyderabad, Chennai, Ahmedabad in March 2020 which have been planned with an intent to draw together business hubs, investors, decision-makers, senior government officials and the local business community in a stimulating dialogue that spurs the investment and economic development of Jammu and Kashmir.

The road-shows are being organised by Jammu and Kashmir Trade Promotion Organization (JKTPO), a nodal agency working under department of Industries and Commerce, Government of J&K, along with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) as the national partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) as media partner and Ernst & Young as the knowledge partner.

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