A.P. Plan outlay fixed at Rs.10,100 cr.

NEW DELHI JULY 3. The Planning Commission today finalised the annual plan outlay for Andhra Pradesh at Rs. 10,100 crores while fixing the 10th Plan allocation at Rs. 46,614 crores.

The clearance was taken at a meeting here between the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission, K.C. Pant, and the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, N. Chandrababu Naidu.

After the meeting, Mr. Naidu denied that the State was always seeking more help from the Centre as it was opting for reforms and improving its own performance. It had outlined a short-term and long-term debt profile as part of efforts to reduce its fiscal deficit to around 4.5 per cent by 2003 from the present 5.3 per cent.

He said the Vision 2020 strategy paper for the next 20 years, which had been finalised by the State Government, would be synergised with the 10th Plan programmes.

Reacting to suggestions that Andhra Pradesh was not a top information technology destination, Mr. Naidu stressed that this was not correct as a large number of IT— enabled companies were in dialogue with his Government. He said there were a large number of queries from business processing out-sourcing companies.

According to an official release, Mr. Pant commended the State for initiating economic reforms and pursuing them earnestly. He said the effects of privatisation, increase in foreign direct investment and other allied reforms would start reflecting in the composition of gross State domestic product shortly. Although the State's GSDP as well as per capita income had shown annual increase, he said the growth had not followed any consistent pattern.

During the discussions, Mr. Naidu also suggested that the State be permitted to replace high cost debts by low cost debts. He also sought an increase in the transfer of funds from centrally sponsored schemes to the State.

He said that as a result of reforms, Andhra Pradesh was confident of total turnaround in the in the power sector by 2005-6. It had set an ambitious growth target of 9.5 per cent for the 10th plan and expected 100 per cent literacy by 2005. Plans had also been drawn for total computerisation of the municipal corporations and paperless services in the Government which would be operationalised by the year-end. Nearly Rs. 1000 crores would be spent on modernisation of health services.

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