West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday announced a slew of new policies including plans to double the state's exports, modernise its logistics and promote renewable energy manufacturing, while opening the Bengal Global Business Summit here. Banerjee also announced a policy to promote bio-fuels and a new sub-sea cable landing station at the sea-resort of Digha to help improve internet connectivity in the eastern region.
The chief minister also said the state's economy was growing at 8.41 per cent and its GDP would touch USD 212 billion this fiscal. West Bengal was ranked sixth in terms of GDP among Indian states in a recent report by Forbes India.
She also told a star-studded gathering of business leaders including petro-chemicals to retail tycoon Mukesh Ambani, energy baron Sanjeev Goenka and Wipro's Rishad Premji, that four new industrial corridors would be set up including Dankuni-Kalyani, Tajpur port-Raghunathpur, Dankuni-Jhargram and Durgapur to Cooch Behar in north Bengal.
Dankuni, eastern India's largest logistics hub, already boasts of 9 km of conveyor belts to carry goods to and from storage silos, added her former finance minister and principal chief advisor Amit Mitra.
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The Bengal Global Business Summit, an annual affair, is being attended by several hundred companies from some 17 countries, including UK, US, Australia, Korea, Japan, Germany and France.
Highlighting the fact that the state was home to some 90 lakh MSME units employing 1.3 crore people, Banerjee pointed out that it also housed a large leather manufacturing complex which was being expanded to be the Asian continent's biggest, besides boasting of one of the largest IT hubs in the country.