Expedite clearances and permissions: CM

Rangasamy aims at creating a business-friendly environment for industries in the Union Territory

Chief Minister N. Rangasamy on Tuesday called upon departments dealing with industry, trade and commerce to expedite clearances and permissions to create a business-friendly environment for industries in the Union Territory.

Addressing the “Vanijya Saptah”, a conclave of industrialists and exporters, Mr. Rangasamy said delay in clearance was one of the many factors causing a migration of industries out of the Union Territory to other States.

“I don’t want to sound over critical, but there is no denying the fact that there has been a decline in the number of industrial enterprises in the estates. It is also an undeniable reality that industries face delay in getting approvals and prospective entrepreneurs have to wait for clearances and this is not only hampering the development of Puducherry, but also causing a migration of units to other business-friendly States,” Mr. Rangasamy said.

The event was supported by the Department of Industries and Commerce, the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) and the Directorate General of Foreign Trade, south zone.

The Chief Minister pointed out that in the past the industrial estates in Sedarapet and also in Mettupalayam near Puducherry saw thriving industrial activity, but the situation has changed now and many industries have moved out of Puducherry.

He also remarked that the single window system should live up to its purpose of granting expeditious approvals. The experience, though, was to the contrary, he said.

To drive home his point, Mr. Rangasamy cited an instance of a hotelier having to run from pillar to post for approval to build an additional floor, the government itself facing obstacles at the Centre in developing a 750-acre site it acquired a decade ago into a Special Economic Zone and the 30-acre site in Mettupalayam acquired for an Information Technology park turning an idle asset.

Pointing out that often, entrepreneurs also encountered delays in getting a power connection, Mr. Rangasamy wondered how the vision to become an attractive destination for industries would be realised if such a situation was allowed to persist.

He appealed to the officials to get their act together and ensure a coordinated approach in creating a business-friendly climate in the Union Territory.

The Chief Minister also launched a special swift window of the Bank of Baroda for MSME exporters to access credit.

Inaugurating the conclave, Lt. Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan, concurred with the sentiments of the Chief Minister and called for course correction to drive the post-Covid-19 revival of the economy.

She recalled that the Prime Minister and the Home Minister had responded positively to the vision document for rapid industrialisation of the Union Territory that she had submitted a couple of months ago.

Stressing the importance of air connectivity for boosting trade and tourism, Ms. Soundararajan said discussions were under way with the Tamil Nadu government on acquiring necessary land for the runway expansion at the Puducherry airport.

The Puducherry government will soon come out with an export policy to “deepen and diversify” the portfolio of products currently shipped out overseas, Chief Secretary Ashwani Kumar said.

The government has approved the draft policy and would soon announce its export policy, he said.

Among those who participated were PML Kalyanasundaram, MLA, Sanjay Chadha, Additional Secretary, Department of Commerce, Government of India, M.K. Shanmuga Sundaram, ADGFT, Chennai, E. Vallavan, Industries Secretary, Yasam Lakshmi Narayana Reddy, Director of Industries and Commerce, Israr Ahmed, Regional Chairman, FIEO Southern Region and Rishita Gupta, District Collector-in-charge.

A B2C exhibition was also held in this connection featuring 30 pavilions that showcased export-oriented products and services of banks, manufacturers, MSMEs and SHGs.

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