Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa rolled out the red carpet for the industry by promising all necessary project approvals in 30 days. She was inaugurating the Global Investors Meet organised by her government in Chennai to give a fillip to fresh investments into the state.
Tamil Nadu, which receives the third largest foreign direct investment in the country (after Maharashtra and National Capital Region), has of late been receiving flak from existing and potential investors for infrastructural shortcomings, especially the availability of electricity.
Jayalalithaa used the occasion to assure the delegates on infrastructure development. She said an infrastructure investment of $250 billion (as per the Vision 2023 that she unveiled in 2012) spread over 214 projects is well on its way with work on 84 projects already commissioned. This includes power projects with an aggregate capacity of 20,000 MW. Jayalalithaa said the power shortage that her government inherited has been eliminated and the state will soon be power surplus.
She said that Tamil Nadu, according to an Assocham report, now leads in eight out of nine development parameters. This has resulted in increased interest in investment in the state. She also quoted CMIE data which specified that planned investment in Tamil Nadu between 2011 and 2015 was Rs 2.62 lakh crore.
Explaining the rationale behind the Global Investors Meet, she said that as per her Vision 2023 statement, the state's per capita income should reach that of middle income countries. "We, in Tamil Nadu, need to grow faster," she added.
Jayalalithaa also invited corporates to invest in South Tamil Nadu where she said a ready-to-occupy land bank aggregating 42,000 acres was at hand.
Speaking at the event, Shiv Nadar, founder and chairman of HCL Technologies, said he was familiar with the state's level of intellect. HCL, he added, has so far invested Rs 6,000 crore in the state and will be investing another $1 billion in the next five years. Most of this money would be invested in the Madurai and Tirunelveli regions of the state.
Mahindra & Mahindra also announced that it will invest Rs 2,000 crore in the state which may increase to Rs 4,000 crore by 2022. Yes Bank also specified its investment plans. If Jayalalithaa is to be believed, a lot more investments have been committed at the Global Investors Meet. She promised to reveal the final figure on Thursday. But she said: “We have already exceeded the targeted investment at Global Investors Meet of Rs 1 lakh crore."