Vizag an exciting investment destination: diplomat

British High Commission has offered its support to Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation for setting up a desalination plant to put a permanent end to drinking water problem in the city.

A high-level team from British Deputy High Commission, Hyderabad, led by Deputy High Commissioner for Andhra Pradesh Richard Hyde called on Municipal Commissioner M.V. Satyanarayana here on Monday. UK has experience in making seawater fit for human consumption.

It has used water from the Thames and is providing the technology to some countries in the Middle East.

Deputy Head of British Deputy High Commission and Head of UK Trade & Investment Arun Pillai told The Hindu that the response to the talks with the GVMC officials was quite encouraging.

The proposal for a desalination plant by deputing a team from here to study the success story of the pilot project being implemented by Chennai Corporation was made by Union Minister of State for Textiles D. Purandeswari last year. Nothing happened after that.

As per information obtained under the Right to Information Act, Visakhapatnam will have shortage of 614 million litres per day by 2020 after implementation of the Polavaram project for domestic and industrial consumers.

If the Polavaram project is not completed by then, the shortfall will go up to 1424 million litres per day.

Mr. Pillai said though the desalination plants would need a lot of investment, they would be viable and beneficial in the long run.

New destination

Stating that the UK Government saw a bright future for investment opportunities in Visakhapatnam, Mr. Pillai said they were looking at opportunities in education, manufacturing, service, aerospace, health care, and other sectors.

He said Quantum Clothing had already made huge investments with employment for 2,500 at Brandix India Apparel City (BIAC), Atchutapuram, and another UK firm – Portia – was providing strategic consultancy to the Gangavaram Port.

Admitting that as of now the investments from UK in Visakhapatnam were ‘very little’, he said they were trying to understand investment opportunities and facilitate good flow of mutually beneficial investment in Visakhapatnam and other tier-II cities like Vijayawada and Guntur.

  • A high-level team has called on the Municipal Commissioner

  • ‘Desalination plants will be viable and beneficial in long run’