Pune: In its bid to project Maharashtra as a leading industrial destination, the Maharashtra government is banking on the latest "mega" investment made by the US giant General Electric (GE) into the group's upcoming Rs 1020 crore (USD 200 million) manufacturing facility at Chakan near here which is also expected to generate a sizable employment.

The industrial "Mega project policy" of the state government framed to attract more investment and generate employment opportunities has been receiving a "tremendous response" channelising both domestic as well as foreign investment on a large scale, according to statistics released by the state industry secretary K Shivaji who signed the MoU between Maharashtra government and GE India Ltd, paving the way for the first phase of its Chakan plant to become operational in 2013 with a thrust on energy and transportation sector oriented products and solutions.
Under the mega project policy, the Maharashtra government has so far approved 335 mega projects with an approximate investment of Rs 2,76,832 crore, creating employment opportunities for about 3.17 lakh people, the industry department noted.

"Out of these 335 projects, 95 projects have gone into production and 253 projects with an approximate investment of Rs 1.75 lakh crore will be set up in backward areas of the state," it added.

The facts and figures released by the state industry department assume an added significance at a time when the issue of Maharashtra's traditional status as a major industrial state has become a topic of discussion following the statement of NCP President Sharad Pawar that the state has been losing on the industrial front in the past few years.

Maintaining that under the Mega Project Policy, domestic and foreign investment has been attracted on a big scale in the state, the industry department said, "Under the policy General Motors, Volkswagen, Daimler Chrysler, Sanny heavy industries, Bridge Stone, LG Electronics, Mico Bosch, Boeing, Imsofer manufacturing, Hyundai heavy industries, Piaggio Vehicles, Posco India Ltd etc all renowned companies have invested in Maharashtra."

It said the state government had granted status of mega project and incentives under Mega Project Policy to GE India Industrial Ltd on the basis of the level of fixed capital investment with the signing of the MoU.

The company's proposed Chakan plant will manufacture various products which may include Gas fuelled reciprocating engines, packaged generator sets, control systems for power sector, non- destructive testing equipment and systems, wind turbine generators and diesel engines for railway locomotives.

It will also target to provide jobs to around 2,500 persons at the facility.

The State Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan who was personally present on the occasion of signing the MoU with GE India, on Friday, said in order to attract greater investment, the state government had undertaken improvement in infrastructure adding that with new power plants slated to come up in the state, industrialists would find the electricity siutation "comfortable".

A new international airport near the Chakan industrial complex too would come up soon, he noted.


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