Ambani, other industry leaders to join Bengal Global Business Summit, no word on Adani
Telegraph | 21 November 2023
The Mamata Banerjee government plans to highlight a stable political climate, ready-to-move-in land bank and strong infrastructure among others to woo investors during the Bengal Global Business Summit (BGBS) that the chief minister will inaugurate on Tuesday, said administrative sources.
The sources said a supportive policy environment, better rail and road networks, inducement to convert leasehold land to freehold property and a large consumer base would also help draw the investors.
The sources said such factors would be attractive enough to neutralise the absence of fiscal incentives which other Indian states usually pitch to attract industry.
“Industry understands that Bengal collectively offers more to industry than just fiscal incentives which are usually dragged on for years. That’s why we have been able to attract so many investors,” said a state government official.
The 7th edition of the summit is expected to draw some of the top names of the industry such as Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Industries Ltd; Sanjiv Puri, chairman of ITC Ltd; Sajjan Jindal, chairman of JSW Group; Sanjiv Goenka, chairman of RP-SG Group; and Harshavardhan Neotia, chairman of Ambuja Neotia Group.
While Ambani’s return to the BGBS after four years will give heft to the meeting, there has been no confirmation so far on whether Gautam Adani or his son Karan — who were sent invitations, according to a source — will be present.
The Adanis were the top draw in the last edition of the BGBS during which they received a letter of intent from the Bengal government to develop Tajpur port. The parties, however, are yet to sign an agreement on the project.
“It will be a big show and you will see the who’s who of India Inc in Calcutta for the BGBS 2023,” said a source in the state government.
The two-day summit will be spread over three locations. While the inaugural session will take place at Biswa Bangla Convention Centre in Newtown, the valedictory session will be organised at Dhana Dhanye Auditorium in Alipore. Biswa Banga Mela Prangan will play host to the country sessions and sectoral meets on the day of the summit.
The BGBS will bring together at least 120 industry leaders from four corners of the country, thanks to the CII and FICCI which will hold their national council and national executive meetings, respectively, on Tuesday ahead of the inaugural session at the convention centre.
Chief minister Mamata is expected to pay a visit to the internal meetings of these two chambers, said a source.
The summit will also draw representatives from 28 countries and over 200 foreign delegates will attend the event. The largest foreign delegation — a 55-member team — will be from the United Kingdom.
There will be delegations from the USA, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Luxembourg, Poland, Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, South Korea, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates.
Sources in the state government said the summit — the last one ahead of the Lok Sabha polls — would create a buzz around brand Bengal and result in investments, which would address the problem of unemployment.
Data provided by the government suggest the state has attracted investment proposals of over Rs 15 lakh crore from the 2015 edition of the BGBS onwards. Opposition parties in Bengal vehemently dispute the authenticity of the number.