The country’s largest investment summit, marketed as ‘India’s Economic Expressway’, concluded without the government announcing the total of investment figures, as it had done in the 2013 edition.
Formally, the meet was to stretch over four days, ending Friday. However, the valedictory functions were staged on Thursday itself; Friday will see only business-to-business and business-to-government meetings.
Day 3 at the ‘Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit’, saw the signing of 1,193 memorandums of understanding (MoUs), taking the total count to 25,578 of these, of which 52 were of Rs 4,000 crore or above. Of these 52 MoUs, around 50 were signed by the second day.
Which meant the state government claimed to have attracted investments of at least Rs 2 lakh crore during the eighth edition of the event (it began in 2003). On Wednesday, it had said 133 MoUs
were in the range of Rs 1,000-4,000 crore. In all, investment commitments of Rs 4-5 lakh crore could be easily accounted for.
The seventh edition, under then chief minister Anandiben Patel
in 2013, had seen a commitment of Rs 25 lakh crore.
Despite the media’s persistent effort, deputy chief minister Nitin Patel would not divulge the investment commitment figure. He even declined to say if it was more than the seventh edition. In recent times, the implementation rate of MoUs
signed in previous editions has come under strong scrutiny.
The valedictory session was also marked by the absence of corporate heavy-weights from the national arena, barring Pankaj Patel, chairman and managing director (CMD) of Cadila Healthcare and now the head of business chamber Ficci; Sudhir Mehta, managing director of Torrent Power; Sanjay Lalbhai, CMD of Arvind Ltd; and Rasna’s Piruz Khambatta. A young Karan Adani, newly appointed as chief executive of Adani Ports and SEZ, made his way to the dais, which had seen his father, Gautam Adani, in regular attendance till now.