New Delhi: The 15th Finance Commission on Tuesday said Odisha with 72 per cent of India's mineral resources and a politically-stable environment is nowhere near its true potential, but with certain initiatives can have a great future.
"With so much mineral wealth, Odisha is truly an example of a state which is nowhere near reaching its true growth potential... The Commission is of the view that the state of Odisha has a great future given political stability and other factor endowments," it said.
The Finance Commission led by Chairman N.K. Singh is on a four-day visit to the state to hold detailed meetings with the state government led by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik during which the Commission will hold discussions on the state's finances and other issues.
On Tuesday, the first day of the visit, the Commission members met the representatives of trade and industries of Odisha.
"The Commission felt that it was ironic that with 72 per cent of India's mineral resources, manufacturing sector in Odisha was still very moderate. This has resulted in low job creation," the Finance Commission said in a statement.
"Some recent initiatives of the state government have been good and effective, but deeper changes in the regulatory framework, combined with improved infrastructure and logistics are needed to make the state truly competitive," it added.
Later, the Commission will hold meetings with the representatives of various political parties and those of the Panchayati Raj institutions and Urban Local Bodies of Odisha.
It will undertake field visits to take stock of the state's poverty eradication program - Odisha Livelihood Mission. It will also visit the Self Help Groups, Drinking Water Projects, Cyclone Shelters and other development projects of the state.
Further, the Commission will also review the works undertaken by the Chilka Development Authority as well as Wet Land Research Centre.