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Bengal inks pact with Indonesian group

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To implement various developmental projects

SALIM PACT: Mr Beni Santoso, Chief Executive of the Indonesia-based Salim Group, signing papers in the presence of Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, West Bengal Chief Minister, and Mr Nirupam Sen, State Minister for Industry and Commerce, during a meeting on the `New Kolkata Development Project,' in Kolkata on Monday. A. Roy Chowdhury
SALIM PACT: Mr Beni Santoso, Chief Executive of the Indonesia-based Salim Group, signing papers in the presence of Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, West Bengal Chief Minister, and Mr Nirupam Sen, State Minister for Industry and Commerce, during a meeting on the `New Kolkata Development Project,' in Kolkata on Monday. A. Roy Chowdhury

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Project details


The industrial

development projects proposed as per the agreement include the setting up of a mega chemical industrial estate, including a chemical SEZ, spread across 10,000 acres in a 50:50 joint venture with West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation Ltd.

The agreement

provides for construction of the Eastern Link Highway, which would be 100 km long and 100 m wide and spread over 2,500 acres.

Kolkata, July 31

West Bengal on Monday signed an agreement with the Salim Group of Indonesia to implement various developmental projects, including what is stated to be the largest infrastructure project undertaken by any State.

The projects would be implemented by New Kolkata International Development Private Ltd, a special purpose company that has been promoted by the Salim Group, the Universal Success Group and Unitech.

The cumulative investment that would be required would be known only after detailed project reports are ready.

The industrial development projects proposed as per the agreement include the setting up of a mega chemical industrial estate, including a chemical SEZ, spread across 10,000 acres in a 50:50 joint venture with West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation Ltd.

A multi-product SEZ spread across 12,500 acres in Haldia and SME industrial estates in different locations have also been planned.

The agreement provides for construction of the Eastern Link Highway, which would be 100 km long and 100 m wide and spread over 2,500 acres.

In addition, the consortium would build a four-lane road bridge over the Hooghly river, from Raichak to Kukrahati. Construction of the bridge would be completed by 2012.

The consortium would maintain the bridge for 15 years, after which the State Government would take over.

Construction of a four-lane road bridge over the Haldi River, from Haldia to Nandigram, has also been planned.

The proposed bridge would provide a link between Haldia and the proposed chemicals SEZ in Nandigram.

The agreement envisions the setting up of several urban development projects and projects for economic rehabilitation and social development in respect of those who would lose their land to the proposed projects.

Land acquisition

Speaking after the agreement was signed, the Chief Minister, Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, touched upon the contentious issue of land acquisition for industrial projects.

"Wherever possible, we have tried to avoid taking over fertile land," he said, adding that the State Government was trying its best to allay apprehensions in this regard.

Mr Nirupam Sen, Minister for Industries and Commerce, said that those who lose their land would not only be compensated financially but also be trained in skill sets and provided with employment.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 1, 2006)
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