The State of Punjab has been witnessing rapid economic progress in the last 4 years. This progress is not just limited to the already industrialised districts such as Ludhiana and Jalandhar; districts such as Pathankot, Barnala and Gurdaspur have also been able to attract significant investments.
The Industrial and Business Development policy 2017 released in October 2017 has played a significant role in the inclusive growth of State. The policy lays special emphasis on inclusive growth of the State with focus on the growth of lagging districts. Additional fiscal incentives to units in border areas such as 40% additional FCI eligibility for 1st unit in Sector and EDC exemption are examples of this focus.
The impact of the policy to ensure overall development of the state can be gauged by looking at the total investments received in the State and in districts with low per capita GDP in 2017. The per capita GDP of Punjab at constant (2011-12) prices for the year 2017 stood at 1,18,230 INR with huge variations in districts. Rupnagar has the highest per capita GDP (153419) and Gurdaspur had the lowest (80775). The per capita GDP of districts in 2016-17 is given in fig. 1.
Fig: 1. Per Capita GDP of Districts (distribution on the basis of below and above Punjab’s Per Capita GDP)
Punjab Per Capita GDP at constant (2011-12) Prices: 118230
Punjab has received more than INR 72000 Cr. worth of investments in last 4 years. Out of this amount, 47.5% of the investments, which means more than INR 34000 Cr. have come to the districts with below average per capita GDP. The Border Area district of Pathankot has received projects worth INR 1050 Cr.
M/s Varun Beverages with a committed investment of INR 800 Cr. has started its operations for manufacturing of beverages and milk-based drinks in Pathankot. It may be worthwhile to note that the company got its plant commissioned in a mere span of 10 months, thanks to the seamless facilitation provided by Invest Punjab.
Some of the marquee sectors that have propelled the growth of the State and more particularlyof the districts with low per capita GDP are as follows:
- Agri & Food Processing: The State got investments worth INR 5800 Cr with more than 2700 Cr. investments in low per capita GDP districts. Among these districts, the ones that garnered maximum investments were Pathankot (920 Cr.), Gurdaspur (500 Cr.), Amritsar (290 Cr.), Fazilka (202 Cr.), Ferozepur (170 Cr.), and Tarntaran (106 Cr.). Major projects in this sector include M/s Wave Beverages with committed investment of 169 Cr, M/s Chanakya Dairy with investment size of 104 Cr., and M/s Savera Beverages with committed investment of 123 Cr.
- Petrochemicals: As many as 10 projects in this sector have been received in the low per capita GDP districts such as Patiala, Bhatinda, etc. with a total investment size of INR 22,400 Cr. M/s HMEL is expanding its existing refinery in Bhatinda, Punjab with a committed investment of 20,000 Cr. The company is already in advanced stages of construction and is looking forward to commission its expansion unit soon.
- Manufacturing: More than 150 projects were received in the low per capita GDP districts in the last 4 years with a total investment size of 2400 Cr. Major districts receiving investments in this sector included Barnala, Gurdaspur, Amritsar, Patiala. Marquee projects in this sector include M/s Satia Industries in Sri Muktsar Sahib with investment size of 500 Cr. and M/s Madhav Alloys in Patiala with investment of 152 Cr.
- Textiles: Textiles is another sector of Punjab that has been a key driver of economic prosperity in the State, with a total investment of 3200 Cr occurring in this sector in last 4 years. More than 1400 Cr. worth of investment has happened in the low per capita GDP districts. Districts such as Bathinda, Barnala and Patiala were frontrunners to attract investments in this sector. Major investors include M/s Sportking India with investment of 265 Cr. in Bhatinda, and M/s Trident Ltd. in Barnala with investments of 300 Cr. and 100 Cr.
The government has taken a wholistic approach to ensure inclusive development of the State and continues to do so. This approach shall play a major role in the long term to ensure economic prosperity of the State.
Breakup of Investments in Low and High Per capita GDP districts.
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Very Good progress being made by the State of Punjab under the present Government. rg Er kksharma