Enterprise Odisha 2012, a CII initiative in association with the Government of Odisha, was off to a colourful start with State Chief Minister Mr Naveen Patnaik inaugurating the mega event by lighting lamps at the IDCO Exhibition Ground in Bhubaneswar on Friday (23 November).
At least 100 large and medium-sized industries, including Tata Steel, Nalco, Vedanta, Jindal Steel and Power, Emami have put up stalls over an area of approximately 5,000 square metres in this five-day even0t.
In his inaugural address, Mr Naveen Patnaik described CII’s “efforts through partnering with industry and government are certainly creditable”.
Mr Patnaik said his Government is open to constructive suggestions from the industry to set a strategic agenda for fast-track economic growth along with inclusive social improvements to harness the demographic potential of the state.
“I urge the industry fraternity to consider Odisha as a favourable investment destination offering tremendous opportunities for sustainable growth,” said Mr Patnaik.
“Even though these are difficult times, we look forward to attracting investments in the non-core sectors such as food processing, auto and components, IT/ITeS, tourism and hospitality, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, etc.”
The Chief Minister also released a report prepared by CII and KPMG titled Investment Climate in Odisha.
The report cites the 13th Finance Commission which has projected Odisha as the second fastest growing state in the country from 2010-11 to 2014-15. Odisha has recorded a Gross State Domestic Product growth rate of 12.6 per cent, it says.
The State’s Steel & Mines Minister Mr Rajanikant Singh, described Enterprise Odisha 2012 as the largest trade fair in the State and thanked CII for its unwavering commitment to ensuring sustainable and inclusive growth in Odisha.
“CII has provided a fillip to Odisha’s journey in industrial space. If Odisha is on the growth path putting those gloomy years of fiscal deficits behind, CII’s role cannot be ignored,” said Mr Singh.
Mr Parag Gupta, Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Department of Industries, said Odisha has all the advantages that any frontline State in the country can offer. “There is nothing missing in Odisha. The State is building robust infrastructure, adopting a plethora of policies conducive to industrialization.”
Mr R K Agrawal, Chairman, CII Eastern Region showered praise on the Odisha Chief Minister for leading Odisha to the path to prosperity.
“Odisha’s progress has been remarkable in the past few years. Thanks to rapid growth in industrial output, development of SEZs and policy formulations and measures conducive to industrial growth, the Odisha Government under the able leadership of Mr Patnaik has come to believe in free enterprise and individual initiative,” Mr Agrwal said in his welcome address.
“In fact, almost in every perceivable sector, Odisha attracts the attention of investors the world over. A whopping US$50 billion is expected to be invested in the state for building steel and aluminum producing capacity, power projects, ports, and other infrastructure. If things go as planned, Odisha could emerge as one of the most significant FDI destinations in the world, rivalling Shenzhen in China,” Mr Agrawal said.
“This has been made possible by a combination of factors — stable leadership, investor-friendly government policies, proactive institutional support, improved literacy, urbanization, etc.”
Mr Sudhir L. Deoras, Deputy Chairman, CII, Eastern Region expressed confidence that all exhibitors, delegates and visitors over the next few days will have a good chance to showcase their products, interact with fellow businessmen and forge a strong bond.”
Mr Suresh Thawani, Chairman, CII Odisha State Council, Mr M K Gupta, Vice Chairman, CII Odisha State Council, Dr Saugat Mukherjee were also present at the inauguration ceremony.