The power shortage in Tamil Nadu would soon be overcome and the State would become entirely power deficit-free from 2012, said Deputy Chief Minister M.K. Stalin here on Sunday.

Though the State was experiencing shortage of power on account of the extraordinary industrial growth, the problem would be overcome soon once the new power projects became operational.

The State government, in the meantime, has announced that 300 MW of electricity would be supplied during evening peak hours to 1,000 high-tension establishments under the scheme of reliability charges. The State was willing to extend the scheme to more industries if they came forward to utilise it, Mr. Stalin said, participating in an interactive session with members of the Confederation of Indian Industry here.

According to a press release issued after the meeting, Mr. Stalin said that the transparent industrial policy, easy accessibility of Chief Minister and officials, speedy action, good infrastructure and human resource had resulted in the rapid industrialisation of the State under the present government. Over the past four-and-a-half years, the State had attracted investments to the tune of about Rs.45,000 crore, generating employment to lakhs of people.

The State government was implementing various schemes to promote industrial growth in backward districts, he said, and cited the projects sanctioned in districts such as Perambalur, including a manufacturing unit of MRF Ltd. There was scope to tap the natural resources potential in places such as Jayamkondam and Mannargudi and this required the cooperation of the people.

Mr. Stalin promised to discuss with officials various issues and demands raised at a meeting, including a plea for setting up a modern machining centre and improving the infrastructure in the industrial belt of Thuvakudi, Ariyamangalam, Tiruverambur and Mathur areas near Tiruchi. Steps would be taken to establish a trade centre in Tiruchi and strengthen the city's core industrial strength in fabrication.

He also promised steps to promote agro-based industries, including food processing centres and cold storages, in consultation with industry representatives and the Agriculture Department. Suitable locations for the same and funding possibilities through State and Central agencies would be explored. The Deputy Chief Minister said steps would also be taken to establish a Home Furnishing Design Centre in Karur with the help of Union government. A proposal to lay an outer ring road for the town would be drawn up. An export assistance cell would be established in Tiruchi.

The State government had initiated measures to impart skill development training to students of schools and colleges and industry bodies such as CII should extend their cooperation to same, he said.

K.N.Nehru, Transport Minister; N.Selvaraj, Forest Minister; P.Selvam, Additional Chief Secretary, MSME Department; Rajeev Ranjan, Principal Secretary, Industries; G.Santhanam, Secretary, Highways; Mahesan Kasirajan, Collector; R.Nandini, chairperson of CII TN State Council; S.Gopinath, Chairman, CII, Tiruchi Zone; N.K.Ranganath, vice-chairman, CII TN State Council, and others spoke.