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ITC, Airtel Line Up More Investments In West Bengal

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee invites investors, saying her state has a peaceful atmosphere conducive for setting up industries

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Leading corporates ITC and Bharti Airtel have said they would ramp up their investments in West Bengal.

ITC chairman Y.C. Deveshwar speaking at the Bengal Global Business Summit in Kolkata on Friday said the company already has investments worth Rs 4,500 crore in process.

Two plants - one food processing and another an integrated logistics park - are nearing completion.

ITC was also coming up with a marquee hotel next to ITC Sonar which would be christened as ITC Royal Bengal, he said, adding, this property will have 1.5 million square feet and has been designed in such a way so as to attract international attention.

Deveshwar said that work on the proposed ITC Infotech on 3.5 million sq ft would start before February this year.

"Our investments are closely linked to IT, agriculture, hotels and tourism which will have a multiplier effect," he added.

Bharti Enterprises vice-chairman Rakesh Bharti Mittal said Bharti Group including Aitel has made an investment of Rs 9,000 crore in West Bengal.

"We will invest another Rs 3,500 crore in the next three years," he added.

Essel Infraprojects Limited (EIL), a part of Essel Group, said it will invest Rs 4,000 crore in West Bengal in various infrastructure projects, including building of highways.

"EIL will be developing roads projects admeasuring 300 kms connecting various cities across West Bengal. Apart from this MoU, the company also agreed to explore the possibilities of investment in Tourism and Intelligent Power City sectors after pre-feasibility study," EIL said in a statement.

Speaking about the company's vision for West Bengal, Group Chairman Subhash Chandra said, "These MoUs provide a unique opportunity to enhance existing infrastructure and provide new paradigm to development of infrastructure in the state and we at Essel understand this as we have effectively demonstrated our implementation abilities in Urban Infrastructure space in various other parts of India."

Inviting Investors
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee invited investors saying her state has a peaceful atmosphere conducive for setting up industries.

Compliments were showered on her government at the third edition of Bengal Global Business Summit from captains of industry as well as ministers of the Narendra Modi government.

Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani said, "As an investor, I stand here to say that West Bengal is among the top of the list in terms of doing business and recommend the state as an ideal investment destination."

His statement in the presence of Banerjee and several other industrialists came as a shot in the arm to the TMC government battling to develop an industry-friendly image ahead of the state polls, slated for later this year.

Banerjee in her turn told a galaxy of industrialists, "Our government will work as your worker."

Slamming her detractors, she said, "Some people are saying that there has been no investment. It is not true. Projects worth Rs 94,000 crore investment have already taken off. Some of the projects we had signed have already started.

"We have already set up a core group for industries. Our elections are coming, but don't worry everything will be sorted out. Democracy will continue. This elected government will return."

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said, "Summits of this kind held every year clearly demonstrates the intention that the need of the hour is to generate growth, increase revenue and fight poverty for which investments are required."

"It is in this context that West Bengal that has lost its glory of the past could be restored and I assure you that the Centre will give all its support to the state's endeavour to attract investments," he said.

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