GUWAHATI, June 30 - �The North East India is poised to take giant strides towards development. With strong emphasis on the Government of India�s Act East Policy, wherein the North East would be the gateway to South East Asia, it would be in the forefront.�
This was the consensus observation at the �Make in North East�, organised as part of the Government of India�s �Make in India� initiative by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) with support from the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion, Govt of India,�in Mumbai today.
The �Make in North East� is part of North East India Business & Cultural Integration Initiative aimed at promoting the region as a business and tourism destination.
Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister of Meghalaya Dr Mukul Sangma said that the North East is a conglomeration of frontier States and a very important part of the country for geo-political reasons. �Hence, the development of the region is of paramount importance. As far as Meghalaya is concerned, it is paradise unexplored for the tourism sector. Meghalaya also has a huge potential for businesses, infrastructure and health sectors. Our Government had embarked upon a number of initiatives to create a conducive environment for business based on a sustainable model of development,� he said.
In his address, Chandra Mohan Patowary, Industry Minister, Assam said that the new BJP-led Government of Assam wants to attract investment in Assam in a big way and it is ready with land parcels to attract investments.
Shyamkanu Mahanta, founder and chief executive�of the initiative said, �The North East Festival initiative aims at creating awareness on the region and to promote investment and tourism. With the trilateral highway connecting Moreh in Manipur to Maesot to Thailand, the landlocked North East will be connected to the economically prosperous ASEAN region, and it would open up huge vistas of investment in the region.�
In his keynote address, Sandipan Chakravorty, Chairman, CII, North East Council said that around 96 per cent of the northeastern States shared international borders with four countries. �We have worked towards improving connectivity for the region, not only within the country but the entire world. The region has huge potential in hydroelectricity, tourism, IT&ICT and healthcare sectors,� he added.
Captains from Indian industry, like HUL Group, Godrej Group, India Hotel Corporation Ltd, IndusInd Bank and TCS spoke on their positive experiences in doing business in the North East and urged investors to look at the region as a destination.�Ajal Lalvani from HUL Group announced that HUL has earmarked an investment of Rs 1,000 crore for the region.
AM Singh, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), said that the DoNER is focusing on skill and capacity building and inviting private institutions for the purpose.
�We have a North East BPO scheme and will provide venture capital fund for budding entrepreneurs from the region. In addition, we are also focusing on horticulture and organic produce. The DoNER is also working towards ease of doing business from within and outside the country,� he said.