Biswajit hard sells state at NE business summit

DIPR IMPHAL, 16th Nov: 
Attending the 12th North East Business Summit held on the theme “Transforming North East: The Engine for India’s Growth” at The Lalit, New Delhi on Thursday, Minister Thongam Biswajit Singh has invited investors from across the country to visit and invest in Manipur.

Speaking during the summit, Biswajit emphasised that with Trans Asian Highway expected to connect the ASEAN countries, Manipur will be the gateway of India to South East Asia and there will be lots of opportunity to invest in the state.

Biswajit, who is Commerce and Industries minister besides holding other portforlios, also pointed out that initiative under Act East Policy is to ensure connectivity of the North East States of India with the South East Asian countries for boosting the economy and bilateral relationships in the region.

Encouraging investors to invest in Manipur, Biswajit said that Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises sector is growing rapidly under the State Industrial Policy, “A New Industrial & Investment Policy of Manipur 2017”.

He went on to point out that Manipur has great potential for development in the field of organic Agro-horti raw materials, medicinal and herbal aromatic plants (more than 400 varieties of medicinal plants identified), varieties of bamboos, potential for growing coffee, tea & rubber, high qualities of spices and many natural resources like chromites, limestone, natural gas and crude oil are found.

The Minister further said that recently the state has developed four Industrial Estates in Imphal West, Imphal East, Thoubal and Bishnupur districts and another five in other districts are also in the pipeline.

The state has huge potential in handloom, handicraft and textile industries as well and various kinds of artistic textile products are available. Moreover, Manipur has the highest number of weavers in India with 2.04 lakh weavers and 1.9 loom in possessions.

Minister also said that “besides promoting artisans and craftspersons and creating more employment venues, we have formed a mission called MEETAC which means Mission on Economic Empowerment of Traditional Artisan and Craftsman” under the initiative of the Governor of Manipur.”

The state has many English speaking youth which can help in the development of hospitality and tourism sectors, the minister said.

Conveying that more than 2000 patients came for medical tourism from Myanmar and other neighbouring countries to Manipur last year, he also stressed that the state can initiate medical tourism.

With regard to potential in sports tourism, Biswajit highlighted that out of 9 players from the north-eastern states who played for India in the recently concluded U-17 World Cup, 8 players were from Manipur.

Citing the medals won by state boxers MC Mary Kom and L Sarita Devi in the recently concluded Asian Women’s Boxing Championship, he further pointed out that that acknowledging the sports talents and potentials in the state the Centre has initiated to establish a National Sports University in the state.

The state also has a huge potential in the tourism sector, he said citing the scenic natural beauty, uniqueness of Loktak Lake, Keibul Lamjao, etc.

He further invited investors attending the event to visit and enjoy the upcoming Manipur Sangai Festival and the Business Development Summit which will begin from November 21.

The event was also attended by Governor of Mizoram, Lt. Gen. Nirbhay Sharma; Minister for the Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) Dr Jitendra Singh; Secretary Naveen Verma; Ministry of External Affairs Secretary (East) Preeti Saran; Principal Scientific Advisor of GOI, Dr R Chidambaram; ICC North East Regional Committee and chairman Tea Board PK Bezbaruah; Additional Chief Secretary Department of Industries and Commerce, Government of Assam Ravi Capoor; IRS Secretary IWAI Shashi Bhushan Shukla; Indian Chamber of Commerce President Shashwat Goenka; Indian Chamber of Commerce Director General Dr Rajeev Singh and other dignitaries.

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