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‘Santa’ Shinde back from Davos with bagful of projects worth Rs 3.53 lakh cr

Chief Minister Eknath Shinde returned home here early on Friday after attending the World Economic Forum (WEF) meet in Davos, Switzerland -- with whopping investment commitments of Rs 3.53 lakh crore across sectors for Maharashtra.

Mumbai, Jan 19,2024:  Chief Minister Eknath Shinde returned home here early on Friday after attending the World Economic Forum (WEF) meet in Davos, Switzerland — with whopping investment commitments of Rs 3.53 lakh crore across sectors for Maharashtra.

During his four-day sojourn in the Swiss ski resort, Shinde signed MoUs worth around Rs 3.53 lakh crore with major investments coming in sectors like steel, information technology, green energy, agriculture, logistics, electronics, etc.

The investments shall be in varied geographical locations ranging from the traditional hot favourites of Mumbai and Pune to the remote parts of Chandrapur and Gadchiroli regions, thus enabling all-round development of the state, said an official.

Of the total investment commitments notched, over Rs 100,000 crore would be from global multinationals, and the rest from Indian corporations and big business houses.

“These agreements are poised to create a significant employment surge of over two lakh jobs in the state. The state’s image as an investment-friendly destination has been highlighted owing to people-oriented policies with a strong emphasis on industrialisation, skilled manpower and quick decision making,” remarked Shinde, in a brief media interaction around midnight.

Shinde’s first day (January 16) in Davos proved auspicious when six agreements were signed with major companies with an investment of over Rs 102,000 crore with an employment potential of 26K-plus jobs.

Further capitalising on the next day, he signed MoUs worth over Rs 208,850 crore with eight big conglomerates with a job creation of around 152,000 jobs.

On the final day, agreements of around Rs 42,825 crore were inked with six industries on January 18, leading to an additional 13,000 jobs.

This comes to total investment commitments of around Rs 3.53 lakh crore plus over two lakh new jobs creation — proving to be more than 2.5 times of the Rs 1.37 lakh crore commitments he got in 2023, of which 72 per cent are fulfilled — explained the official.

The major agreements on January 16, are with: Inox Air Products: Rs 25,000 crore (5,000 jobs); B.C. Jindal Group: Rs 41,000 crore (5,000 jobs); JSW Steel: Rs 25,000 crore (15,000 jobs); AB InBev Rs 600 crore (150 jobs); Godrej Agrovet: Rs 1,000 crore (650 jobs); and a US-based data company Rs 10,000 crore (200 jobs).

The next, MoUs were inked with: Adani Group Rs 50,000 crores (500 jobs); Swiss Indian Chamber of Commerce Rs 1,158 crores (500 jobs); India Jewellery Park Rs 50,000 crores (1 lakh jobs); Web Works Rs 5,000 crores (100 jobs); Indospace Rs 3,500 crores (15,000 jobs); and a global conglomerate in natural resources Rs 20,000 crore (4,000 jobs), MAHAPREIT Rs 56,000 crore for green power projects, and other companies.

The final day saw agreements signed with: Surjagad Ispat Rs 10,000 crore (5,000 jobs); Kalika Steel Rs 900 crore (800 jobs); Million Steel 250 crore (300 jobs); Hyundai Motors Rs 7,000 crore (4,000 jobs), ALU Tech of Qatar Including Rs 2,075 crore (400 jobs); and CTRLS Rs 8600 crore (2500 jobs).

Shinde said that other companies like Arcelor Nippon-Mittal , and groups from Oman and Saudi Arabia are interested in making investments of Rs 100,000 crore across sectors.

Slamming the Davos trip, the Opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) has questioned various aspects of the investments and achievements claimed by the government.

Congress state General Secretary Sachin Sawant said on X that when majority of the big companies are based in India, “then what was the need to travel to Davos, the agreements could have been signed here in India”.

The Shiv Sena (UBT) MLA Aditya Thackeray targeted what he termed as a ‘Swiss holiday’ at public expense, while Nationalist Congress Party (SP) MLA Rohit Pawar and others have sought a detailed statement on the achievements and expenditure incurred over the Davos trip.

During his high-profile trip, Shinde hobnobbed with the top political leaders and global corporate honchos or top executives to discuss with them plans to develop Maharashtra’s infrastructure and the potential investment opportunities available here.

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