Srinagar, Nov 03: In the wake of the introduction of the new industrial policy in Jammu and Kashmir, the region has witnessed a remarkable surge in investment and job creation. With ongoing investment projects totalling nearly ₹25,000 crore and the allocation of 11,861 kanals of land for approximately 1,767 units across new and existing industrial zones, the future of the union territory looks promising.
The implementation of this ground-breaking policy has had a profound impact on employment, as 1,09,570 workers have found new job opportunities. Moreover, the region has seen substantial investments, reaching ₹2,153.45 crore during the financial year 2022-23, marking the highest investment level in the past decade. The positive momentum continues into the current financial year, with investments already amounting to ₹1,752.1 crore realized in just six months, setting a new record.
Vikramjit Singh, Commissioner/Secretary to the Government, Industries & Commerce Department, expressed his optimism, stating, "This comprehensive compendium stands as a testament to our relentless commitment to fostering a robust and thriving industrial landscape in our region. I believe this resource will not only serve as a guiding light for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors but will also underscore our steadfast dedication to driving sustainable economic growth and development in the region."
According to statistics provided by the Industries and Commerce department, the direct employment opportunities have been created for 11,091 individuals, while indirect employment, including subcontracting on the same project sites, has benefited 5,582 people. Furthermore, the implementation of the policy has facilitated the generation of 77,743 jobs through the Prime Minister's Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP).
A recent report indicates that the new industrial policy has brought a wave of economic activity, with 169 units embarking on projects with investments totaling ₹7,096 crore, promising employment opportunities for 21,076 individuals. These units are gearing up to commence production in the near future.
As per statistics, the Industries and Commerce department has been inundated with 6,231 investment proposals, amounting to an impressive ₹87,923 crore in potential investments. These proposals have the potential to create jobs for approximately 3,92,162 individuals, representing a significant boost to the local job market.
Moreover, the department has received premium payments from 1,072 units, which are poised to make substantial investments of ₹14,940 crore. These units are expected to generate employment for 72,874 people, further contributing to the economic growth and prosperity of the region.
The Central Government's New Central Sector Scheme (NCSS) has allocated a significant financial outlay of ₹28,000 crores to promote fresh investments in Jammu and Kashmir, offering a remarkable return on investment (RoI) of up to 400%. This program is particularly targeting Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to establish their units within the Union Territory.
Since the introduction of the New Industrial Policy, the average investment per kanal of land has skyrocketed to ₹2.24 crores, marking a significant increase from the previous average of just ₹0.24 crores per kanal. The Prime Minister's Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) has played a vital role in this progress, with 89,063 cases approved and ₹1,150 crores in margin money disbursed, leading to employment opportunities for over 7,12,504 people since 2019.
Efforts to provide a land bank for industrial unit setups include the introduction of change of land use certificates (CLU), facilitating a diverse range of industries and reducing dependence on government-owned estates. Private industry is currently developing 3,722 kanals of land through this initiative. The development of 46 new industrial estates covering 17,012 kanals of land has brought the total to 110 estates, with the engagement of Central Public Sector Undertakings (CPSUs) such as NBCC and IRCON to expedite the process. Furthermore, six new industrial estates are scheduled for development by CPWD.
To encourage vertical expansion, the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) has been increased from 0.61 to 1.5 without any additional charges, making it an attractive proposition for businesses. The region also offers one of the lowest power tariffs for industrial units in India, substantially reducing the cost of doing business.
Land acquisition is underway to facilitate project commencement, with 20,794 kanals intended for new land and an additional 6,021 kanals identified for future development. Private industrial estates are expected to contribute an additional 4,400 kanals of land.
In an effort to enhance the ease of doing business, Jammu and Kashmir introduced the Single Window System in February 2022, offering 182 online services. This system ensures that citizens receive services within specified timeframes, backed by the J&K Public Service Guarantee Act, 2018.
The region was also the first Union Territory to integrate with the National Single Window System and has adopted several other online portals for streamlined service delivery. It's worth noting that, under the industrial policy, land measuring 2,063.50 kanals allotted to 104 units has been cancelled.