Make in Maharashtra, Fadnavis tells US businesses

New York, June 30 (IANS) Joining a stream of investment-seeking Indian leaders to the US, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis told business leaders here that when they Make it in India it should be in his state and pitched its competitive edge.

Speaking with American industry executives at a meeting of the US-India Business Council (USBC) here on Monday, Fadnavis said: “The government has taken a variety of measures to promote ease of doing business in the state and we want to be viewed as a top destination for both domestic as well as international investments.”

He received an endorsement from the USIBC president Mukesh Aghi, who said, “The Council’s member companies have been encouraged by the ease of doing business in Maharashtra.”

“Our government”, Fadnavis said, “is committed to providing a boost to both ‘Make in India’ and ‘Make in Maharashtra’ campaigns, provide business to both medium and small enterprises and create much-needed jobs.”

He identified Delhi-Mumbai Industrial corridor and Smart Cities among the critical projects that the state was promoting for joint ventures. He also invited investments in manufacturing, agriculture, aviation, engineering and information technology.

Fadnavis began his investment safari just after Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley wound up last week a ten-day tour of the US meeting with US business and financial leaders to promote India as an investment destination. They are trying to take advantage of the momentum in foreign direct investment heading to India after the BJP was elected to power. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) reported last week that foreign direct investment in India rose by 22 percent last year to 34 billion.

Fadnavis said that the state had taken several reforms in regulations to make doing business in Maharashtra competitive. Backing him Aghi said, “I have no hesitation in saying that the state has the potential to emerge as a high ranking state on the ease of doing business index.”

“The infrastructure, a mature workforce, a series of business friendly administrations over the last few decades makes it an attractive FDI destination,” said Ashok Vasudevan, chairman of Preferred Brands International, the manufacturer of the Tasty Bite natural foods brand.

“The state is remarkably resilient due to its diversified base of industry that includes energy, agriculture, food processing, entertainment, engineering, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and financial services,” he added.

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