R Dutta ChoudhurY
GUWAHATI, July 1 – The North East Investment and Industrial Promotion Policy (NEIIPP) of 2007 failed to attract investments to the North East region to the desired extent and in 2009-10, the total investment intention in Assam was less than one per cent of the state which received highest investment.
Highly placed official sources told The Assam Tribune that a study to evaluate the impact of the policy was carried out and the report of the study clearly indicated that industrialization in the North East region was not progressing at the same pace as the rest of the country and the matter should be taken up in a more methodical and organized manner.
Sources revealed that the investors having proposal to invest more than Rs 10 crore and above on the plant and machinery have to register themselves with the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion of the Ministry of Commerce to make their intention clear on investments. That was taken as the basis of the study as the concerned state governments are not maintaining the data base properly.
The report said that as per the records available with the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, out of the eight states of the region, only five received investment intention and Assam received the highest number of such proposals. However, the investment intention received by Assam in 2008-09 was only 0.7 percent of the total investment proposed in the entire country and about 4 per cent of the proposals received by Madhya Pradesh, which ranked number one in the country that year.
The report revealed that on the following year, though the total investment intentions in the country recorded an increase, it reduced for Assam and the figure was 0.2 percent of the total investment intentions in the country and only 0.9 percent of the proposals received by the highest ranked state.
Of the North East States, Manipur received only a handful of proposals, while Nagaland did not receive any proposal up to 2010, the report said. Altogether 737 units were registered in Assam up to Match 31, 2010 generating employment for 28682 persons.
However, the report pointed out that the concerned state governments did not maintain the data properly and systematically and thus, details of units set up, investment and employment proposed etc are not available. The report suggested that data management is crucial for better policy implementation in the North east region. The report also suggested that in Assam and Meghalaya, the focus should be to attract large investments in large scale units from the multinational companies and national corporate houses.