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Karnataka to woo TN industries

BS Reporter  |  Bangalore 

In an effort to promote Chamarajanagar as a new industrial hub on the Karnataka-Tamil Nadu border, the government of Karnataka is developing a new industrial area. The government has notified 1,300 acres land in Chamarajanagar, which is among the most backward districts in the state.

The state government has proposed to develop granite and textile parks in the new industrial area. As part of its development plan, it is organising road shows in various places in the neighbouring states of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh to attract industries, said M N Vidyashankar, additional chief secretary, department of commerce and industries.

The new industrial area is being developed through the Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board (KIADB) at Kallabella, Badanakuppe villages of Chamarajanagar taluk in 1,362,09 acres under the Suvarna Karnataka Corridor scheme.

There is also a proposal to develop Spice Park and food parks in the district, he told reporters, here on Thursday. He said chief minister Siddaramaiah would be leading a high-powered delegation to Coimbatore on January 20.

The delegation would hold a series of meetings with prospective investors from Tamil Nadu and invite them to invest in the state. Chamarajanagar is situated at a distance of 185 km from Bangalore. The district has four taluks and is well known for its natural resources like black granite, manganese, garnet, danite, white stone, dollorite among others.

Agriculture is the backbone of the economy with net sown area being 175,000 hectares. Major commercial crops include sugarcane, cotton and sericulture.

M Maheshwar Rao, commissioner of industries, said the government had proposed to develop a granite park on 300 acres in the new industrial area here.

Already 20 units are functioning at this park and another 70 units have shown interest to set up their granite processing units. The combined investment from these units is estimated at over Rs 200 crore, he said.

As part of its promotional plans for the district, the state government, through its single window agency, Karnataka Udyog Mitra, is organising road shows jointly with the Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FKCCI).

An interactive road show will be held at Coimbatore with the participation of industry and business fraternity on January 20, said R Shivakumar, president, FKCCI. He said the event would mark the signing of the expression of the interest at Coimbatore, followed by the signing of Memorandum of Understanding between the government and the investors.

The Coimbatore road show will be followed by the investors' meet at Chamarajanagar during the third week of February, he added.

Vidyashankar said the department of commerce and industries would soon finalise the new industrial policy of the state and it would come into effect from April 1, 2014.

"We have taken inputs from various chambers of commerce and industry stakeholders on fine-tuning our existing industrial policy. The draft policy will be ready by the third week of January and the final policy will be announced thereafter," he said. Vidyashankar said the task force on manufacturing had recently submitted its report to the state government and some of the recommendations would be incorporated into the new industrial policy.

"We have also studied the industrial policies of many states and have taken some of the best points from some of them and include in our new industrial policy," he said without giving details of what could be expected in the new policy. The present industrial policy (2009-14) of the state will expire end of March.

Giving details of the implementation of MoUs signed during the global investors' meet held in June 2012, he said 48 per cent of the projects signed were under various stages of implementation.

The government had signed MoUs for a combined investment in excess of Rs 12 lakh crore from both the editions of the investors' meet.

Maheshwar Rao said the state government had sent a proposal to the Central government asking for permission to seek Rs 3,500 crore financial assistance from Japan International Coope-ration Agency for the development of a ghat section at Shiradi on the NH-48.

The government proposes to build a 36-km tunnel between Gundya and Sakaleshpur that will reduce the travel time from one and a half hour to 18 minutes. Once the Centre accords approval, the state government would take up the feasibility study for the project, Rao added.

First Published: Sun, January 12 2014. 22:17 IST