Staff Reporter

Says surplus funds to be spent on industries

Says PSU results give confidence

Eight units to be expanded

Kozhikode: Industries Minister Elamaram Karim has said the State is embarking on the biggest capital investment in the last 25 years in the current financial year after gaining in confidence from the results produced by the Industries Department-owned public sector units (PSUs) in the last few years.

Inaugurating the fourth leg of the regional conference on ‘‘Resurgence of State-Owned Enterprises'' here on Friday, Mr. Karim said surplus funds from PSUs would be utilised for setting up new industries and expanding eight units at a cost of Rs.125 crore. The eight units are Komalapuram High-Tech Spinning and Weaving Mill, Kannur High-Tech Weaving Factory, new textile mill in Kasaragod, Kannur unit of Tracho Cable, SIDCO Tool Room in Kozhikode, Keltron unit at Kuttipuram, Forging Unit at Shoranur and a meter factory by United Electricals, Palakkad.

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In addition, the Industries Ministry had also prepared a Rs.126.27-crore project for capital and technological upgradation of 14 PSUs — Alleppey Cooperative Spinning Mills, Forest Industries Travancore, Kelpalm, Keltron Component Complex, Keltron Electro Ceramics, Kerala Automobiles, Kerala Clays and Ceramic Products, Bamboo Corporation, Steel and Industrial Forgings Ltd., Steel Fabrication Unit Ltd., Traco Cable Company, Kerala Ceramics, The Metal Industries Ltd. and Steel Complex.

In his address, the Minister said a turnaround could be achieved with only 12 profit-making PSUs in 2004-05 which rose to 24 in 2005-06, 27 in 2006-07, 28 in 2007-08 and 32 in 2008-09 from a total of 37 PSUs. The net profit of these 37 PSUs had also risen from Rs.69 crore in 2005-06 to Rs.239 crore in 2009-10, he said.

E.T. Mohammed Basheer, MP, in his address praised the achievements of the Industries Ministry under Mr. Karim. In his speech, Mr. Basheer said if wages in the public sector was linked to productivity, this would improve the performance of employees. He marked out the Minister's weekly and monthly review of PSU performance directly.

IIM-Kozhikode director Debashis Chatterjee said whether it is the public or private sector it had to be a ‘performing sector' to survive in a market economy.

Dr. Chatterjee listed ‘productivity, connectivity and creativity' as three ingredients which linked the Industries Ministry and PSU managers and employees in their efforts to revive the units.

Additional Chief Secretary T. Balakrishnan made a presentation on how the PSUs were revived following which a panel comprising trade union leaders and industry experts delivered their responses to the theme.

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