By Rohit Vaid, Gandhinagar, Oct 17 IANS | 10 months ago

Several Japanese companies are planning to set up shop in Gujarat as the state provides good infrastructure and supportive policies, Japan's Ambassador Takeshi Yagi said here Thursday.


"There are more than a dozen Japanese companies which are seriously contemplating to enter Gujarat," Yagi said, addressing an urban development summit being held here.

An ideal geographical location and a stable government in the state also helped, he said.

Japan is the partner country in Vibrant Gujarat's National Summit on Inclusive Urban Development.

Currently, more than 60 companies are present in the state, Yagi added.

"The Japanese companies in Gujarat find it easier to do business, which is supported by easier land acquisition policy, abundant electricity and good infrastructure," said the envoy.

Recently, a number of Japanese companies have announced plans to set up factories in Gujarat. Automobile firm Maruti Suzuki will open its third factory in India at a location in the state.

The interest shown by the Japanese companies also underscores Gujarat's pivotal role in the upcoming Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) and Dedicated Freight Corridor in which Japan is a major investor.

In May, the Indian government approved Rs.17,500 crore (USD 3.24 billion) for the DMIC project, which is estimated to cost around USD 100 billion overall.

The Japanese government has also announced financial support of USD 4.5 billion for the first phase of the DMIC project.

According to government estimates, the industrial cities developed along the corridor are expected to attract an investment of USD 90-100 billion over the next 30 years.

Informatively, Gujarat holds one of largest land territory in the DMIC project and thereby the potential for Japanese companies as an export-based manufacturing hub.

Apart from the DMIC and the Dedicated Freight Corridor, Japanese companies are also interested in manufacturing automobile and consumer goods, and then exporting these products to markets in Africa and other emerging countries.

"The state has good roads and good accessibility to ports and uninterrupted supply of electricity, which is far better than in other parts of India," Yagi said.

Gujarat is also the country's prime gateway for import of liquefied natural gas (LNG).

The state hosts large petrochemical refining industrial complexes.

The ambassador said that by the end of the current year more than 1,000 Japanese companies would be operating in India, which underlines the importance the south Asian country holds for the firms from East Asia.

(Rohit Vaid can be contacted at rohit.v@ians.in)

(Posted on 17-10-2013)