Greater emphasis on manufacturing promised
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said on Monday that the government would come out with a new industrial policy for the State by January 2014.
Addressing the National Executive Council of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), Mr. Siddaramaiah said that the modified policy would place a greater emphasis on manufacturing, which has the capacity to generate jobs.
He justified the recent decision to allow foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail, arguing that it would promote growth and employment.
Admitting that the complaint by FICCI members that the single window system remained ineffective in the State, he said, “We plan to make the system more effective so that there is greater ease of doing business.”
Referring to another complaint that the power situation was not good, the Chief Minister declared, “By 2017 Karnataka would be power surplus State.” He said the government would support the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST).
Conceding that “corruption is a major problem in India”, Mr. Siddaramaiah said, “My government is committed to good, clean and progressive governance.”
He said the government was committed to greater transparency, especially “greater accountability of government officials”.
FICCI president Naina Lal Kidwai said that the growth of the manufacturing sector lagged the national average, and complained that “transaction costs” associated with dealing the regulatory regime in the State were higher than in many parts of the country. “Land acquisition is a significant challenge in the State,” Ms. Kidwai added. “Industry’s wish that the VAT rate would be reduced (in the recent State budget) have been belied,” she said.