Bengal government must restore investors' confidence: Governor

Last Updated: Thu, Jan 17, 2013 12:00 hrs

Haldia (West Bengal), Jan 17 (IANS) West Bengal Governor M.K. Narayanan Thursday batted for the Mamata Banerjee government's initiatives to attract investment in the state despite some hiccups, but reminded it of the "major responsibility" to restore confidence in industrialists.

"I think it (improvement in industrial relation) clearly needs detailed attention. A major responsibility of the government would be to restore confidence in industrialists. I am sure that it would be attended to," Narayanan said while addressing the valedictory session of the state government's investment summit "Bengal Leads" here.

The governor, however, lauded various efforts of the government and Chief Minister Banerjee, like setting up a land bank, and announcing a new IT policy commencing e-governance, to woo industrialists.

Hailing the one-and-half-year-old government for carrying out several measures for development, he said: "The state of West Bengal now ranks sixth in the overall growth in the country. In terms of governance, the state ranks second. These facts cannot and should not be ignored."

"Despite scepticism in some circles, Bengal is already on the growth trajectory," he clarified.

Narayanan also reminded the government of its responsibly to find out "suitable solutions" to land and land acquisition for industries.

Urging the government as well as the entrepreneurs to chalk out a middle path for land acquisition problems in the state, he said: "We only require you (investors) to also be sensible of the reality that the state cannot forego other sectors, specially agriculture."

"Both the government and the industrialists will need to be judicious for acquisition of suitable land since it is often difficult to acquire agricultural land. A joint effort by government and industry is required," he observed.

The governor also pointed out that it was "equally necessary" for the government to play its part to facilitate entry of private capital and create a proper investment climate.

Stating that comparisons being made in some quarters of the media with Gujarat in regards to attracting major investments were something "invidious", Narayanan said Bengal has already taken steps to facilitate investment. "I am aware that several issues have already been raised in this connection."

Supporting the chief minister's view that the state of the economy had been "stagnant" for almost three decades during the 34-year-long rule of the erstwhile Left Front, he urged the entrepreneurs to invest here.

"Bengal offers you a strategic partnership. The state is fully aware of its responsibilities," he added.

--Indo-Asian New Service


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