2013 Gujarat Special: INTERVIEW K T Vyas
KT Vyas, assistant general manager, iNDEXTb (Industrial Extension Bureau), Gujarat government, speaks on what the state’s pro-business outlook is and how it is gaining prominence among automobile and auto ancillary companies.
What is your role in enabling automotive companies to invest in Gujarat?
My role is to assist investors keen on making investments in Gujarat. The Industrial Extension Bureau was set up in 1978. The Bureau, which is the single point of contact for investors, was set up to promote investments in industrial and infrastructure projects. Managed with absolute professionalism, the Bureau serves investors from conceptualisation to project commissioning stage. We helped Tata Motors by reducing the gestation period for their Nano project (as against time taken by regular bureaucratic processes) and the land for the plant was allotted in 2008. This ensured that the factory was ready for commercial production in 2010. We reach out to prospective entrepreneurs residing in or outside Gujarat as well as those from abroad. The Board organises campaigns to motivate them to set up industrial units or participate in any industry in Gujarat. Conventions such as the PravasiBhartiya Divas and Vibrant Gujarat Summits also help. Also, we assess the progress in industries with reference to number of units, jobs created, investments made and value of production.
Tell us about Gujarat's recent achievements?
Ford India and Maruti Suzuki are the best examples. While Ford India has committed to invest Rs 4,000 crore in Gujarat, Maruti has committed a similar amount. So the Sanand-Becharaji belt is seeing key developments while a dedicated Japanese industrial zone and townships commissioned by JETRO (Japan External Trade Organisation) is also coming up. It may well attract 200 to 300 Japanese companies.
What kind of benefits does a company get from the state government to set up a plant?
We provide fiscal benefits, for example, for a longer period as compared to other states. We do not charge octroi, ensure 24x7 power and water supply, provide dedicated investment zones, SEZs and corridors and promote projects in public-private partnerships (PPPs). Our industrial policy aims at synergising opportunities around the Delhi-Mumbai industrial corridor. We also ensure that the OEMs get land for their vendors. Ford and Maruti had requested us to reserve land for their vendors and we have done that.
Are you scouting for new companies to set up their plants in Gujarat?
To get companies to make investments at this time is very difficult. The willingness of the company to invest is more important than any government official chasing them to do so. We are constantly looking out for companies with a progressive outlook to set up their base in the state. We have also received inquiries from automotive companies based in other states. We hope that in the future when they wish to expand, they will choose Gujarat. AMIT PANDAY
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