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The development of the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC), with an investment of over $110 billion over the next ten years, could bolster India’s chances of becoming the global workshop for geotechnologies.

Union Minister for Commerce and Industry Anand Sharma said: “India has the potential to become the workshop of new technology. The late eighties and early nineties came with the big boom in communication and information technology. India quickly moved in at the high end. The development of the industrial corridor will bring about a revolution in the use of green technologies.”

The DMIC envisages setting up of investment regions in Dadri-Noida-Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh, Maneswar-Bawal in Haryana, Khushkhera-Bhiwadi-Neemrana in Rajasthan, Bharuch-Dahej in Gujarat, Igatpuri-Nashik-Sinnar in Maharashtra and Pitampura-Dhar-Mhow in Madhya Pradesh. An industrial area is also planned around the Dighi port in Maharashtra.

The land acquisition process has been initiated and the finances are being worked out. Of the $ 100 billion dollars required for development, India and Japan have committed $100 million each.

However, the government does not want DMIC to become an isolated activity “but move within multiple new policy frameworks of the government” and come up with products and innovations in green technology.

The government is already working on a national manufacturing policy to help increase GDP contribution from the sector from the existing 15 per cent to 25 per cent. It has already decided to set up the first National Manufacturing and Investment Zone (NMIZ) in Rajasthan along the DMIC to boost the manufacturing sector.

Consistent with these policies, the Cabinet has also cleared the setting up of an enterprise, Invest India, in which the government will have 49 per cent equity and FICCI will have 51 per cent. The organisation is already operational and will undertake missions to sensitise investors and have focal points in states to co-ordinate with them, says Sharma.

To hasten sanctions and clearances at the state level, Sharma said a conference of state industry ministers was organised to discuss a way out to better cooperation. The conference looked at bringing uniformity and simplification of rules.

Amitabh Kant, chief executive and managing director of DMICDC, said, cities and industrial regions planned along the corridor, will be built using smart technologies.

However, there has been a delay in implementing the world’s largest infrastructure development initiative. The first phase covering 12 nodes was initially scheduled for commissioning by 2013 and the remaining 12 investment regions and industrial areas were supposed to be developed by 2018. Due to procedural delays, it has been decided that seven nodes will be completed by 2018.

Seventy-five per cent of the project, Kant says, will be developed on public-private partnership (PPP). The finances will be sourced through Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) loans from Japan and resources raised through institutional bonds. Officials claim a major portion of the project would be ready for commissioning in nine years.

“We are an aspirational country. Today we see a commitment both at the industry and government level. This country has a vision and self confidence. We are investing in institutions and developing human resources. I am optimistic,” said Sharma.

Source: Business Standard

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