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‘TN to get an updated industrial policy’

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on November 27, 2020 Published on November 27, 2020

Tamil Nadu government’s new industrial policy is almost ready, and will focus on areas such as broadbasing like diversifying the industrial growth; developing a strong innovation ecosystem and promoting R&D. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami will be releasing the new industrial policy soon. It will be a revision of the 2014 policy, and will be GST compliant, said Industry Secretary N Muruganandam.

The State’s industrial growth is concentrated in and around Chennai. However, a lot of efforts have been taken to incentivise the industries to move them to other parts of the State.

Innovation, R&D gap

Addressing the 184th Annual General Meeting of the Madras Chamber of Commerce & Industry online, he said “We are good in IT, electronic manufacturing and many sunrise sectors but the innovation ecosystem is an area where we need to work on. Whatever we invest today, we will see the results in ten years. If we need to maintain leadership position in industrial development, we will need to work on the innovation ecosystem,” he said urging MCCI to work on this area.

R&D is another area that needs attention. In Tamil Nadu, there are very few R&D companies. Most of them are in Bengaluru or Hyderabad. “We are trying to address this in the new industrial policy to promote the R&D industry,” he said.

Sector-specific policies

Work is going on the FinTech policy; and the industry department is working with departments of textile and agriculture to revamp the textile policy and the food processing policy, he said. “With all these policies in places, Tamil Nadu will be at the forefront in having a dynamic and proactive policy environment for industry,” said Muruganandam.

To attract investment, improving the industrial infrastructure is key, and it is important to create land banks with quality infrastructure. Sipcot has industrial estates across the State but mostly located in around Chennai. This is one of the reasons why the region has developed. Wherever, there is no Sipcot industrial estate, big industries have not gone there, and there is haphazard development, he said.

Land banks

With the new Land Acquisition Act of 2015, it is very difficult and expensive to acquire land for industry. “We are looking at alternative modes of acquiring land through private negotiations or promoting joint ventures parks where the private player has got land. We are trying to motivate them to put the land to industrial use. We are also supporting private industrial parks by facilitating and incentivising them,” he said. “We are trying to create land banks particularly in places like Krishnagiri, where there is a lot of demand, and in Coimbatore and Thoothukudi,” he said.

In all the existing parks, the infrastructure is being improved. For instance, a desalination plant is being developed in Thoothukudi at a cost of ₹636 crore for water supply for industrial use, he added.

A polymer park will be inaugurated soon near the Ennore port, and the State government is working on an Electric Vehicle park. The State government has applied for Central grants for two big parks near Chennai —one for bulk drug pharma in Manallur and the other for medical appliances at Oragadam, he said.

A 500-acre Defence park is being developed in Sulur; a textile-related park planned near Tiruppur in around 1,000 acres with focus on technical textiles and textile machinery; and five mega food parks for the food processing industries. “In a year or two, many of them would be a reality,” he said.

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Published on November 27, 2020
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