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Magnetic Maharashtra attracts large investments

Rahul Wadke Mumbai | Updated on November 15, 2017

Last year at an investor summit in Nanded, in the backward Marathwada region of Maharashtra, an Rs 1,500 crore investment was announced by a large Mumbai-based business house for a 100 MW solar power project. What was most surprising is that the announcement for such major investment was made, when neither the Chief Minister nor the Industries Minister was present at the summit. Large investment and their project implementation has become a routine for the State.

Maharashtra continues to occupy a unique position in the country's economy. With 9.3 per cent of total population and 9.4 per cent of the country's geographical area, Maharashtra contributes to about 15.3 per cent of overall national employment. The State has witnessed an annual average growth of 11.3 per cent in 2010-11 (2004-05 constant prices) and an average industrial growth of 9.1 per cent for the same period. However, these macroeconomic statistics look much more impressive on a closer look at the industrial landscape of the State. Maharashtra has been able to attract significantly high levels of investments.

Investments

From August 1991 to September 2010, the State received 4,221 Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) proposals amounting to Rs 84,958 crore. The State has been able to garner investments of over Rs 26,9984 crore in 324 mega projects with potential to generate over 3 lakh new jobs. About 74.7 per cent of these mega projects are in the less developed regions of the State having low human development index. In November 2011 and March this year, the Maharashtra Government signed eight MoUs and five MoUs respectively, with companies from sectors including steel, engineering, cement and packaging — In spite of the fact that the special economic zone promoted by Mukesh Ambani has been almost scraped and the Jaitapur nuclear project is facing stiff opposition for the local residents. Other billion dollar companies are coming to Maharashtra.

An impressive example is Bahrain-based Gulf Finance House, which in 2006 had approached the Maharashtra Government with a proposal to invest $2 billion for creating a 300-acre energy city near Mumbai. But by March 2010, it had increased to $10 billion and the scope of the project was not just energy zone but also telecommunications, software and entertainment zones spread over 1,700 acres.

Land acquisition was done without any protest or litigation. The construction has commenced for the zones, which are expected to come up by 2017.

Manufacturing

The share of manufacturing sector in the GDP of Maharashtra is nearly 19.8 per cent, compared to 60 per cent from the services sector. Over a period of time, Maharashtra has successfully diversified its industrial base. Maharashtra has also become a leading automobile production hub and a major IT growth centre. The State not only has Mumbai, the economic capital of country as the crown jewel but also emerging industrial spaces such as Pune, Nagpur, Nashik and Aurangabad.

At present, Maharashtra's industrial clusters, auto and auto components represents 38 per cent of national output, apparel and textile 10.4 per cent, and pharmaceuticals and petrochemicals 40 per cent. The State has over 275 industrial Parks and 66 industrial clusters with accompanying amenities and incentives. Maharashtra possesses 116 approved SEZs of which 63 are notified.

These statistics indicate that manufacturing plays a critical role in generating economic growth and development. Moreover, the diversity and of various manufacturing sectors has given this sector a unique magnetism in the State's economy and policy. Maharashtra continues to attract international attention; for the very first time in 27 years, World Economic Forum India Economic Summit moved out of the national capital – Delhi. And the obvious choice was the financial capital of the country. The platform brought more than 800 business leaders to discuss and create the development path of changing global economy.

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Published on April 26, 2012
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