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Place : Tamilnadu, Chennai Speech Date : 13-11-2010

  • Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit has grown from a mere investment promotion event to a growth propelling event.
  • We do not think in piecemeal. We take a holistic approach and try to take a quantum jump when it comes to development
  • We house some of the biggest and the best industries world over.
  •  I have always aimed at “Gujarat's growth for India's growth”.
  • I always believe in the approach of P2 G2 in Governance. This means Pro-Active and Pro-People Good Governance.
  • I always believe that Good Infrastructure attracts investments; Good Governance affirms it and Good Quality of life sustains it.
  • I can visualise that our journey for excellence in all sectors will ignite your own big dreams.

 

Ladies and Gentlemen!

I feel very happy to be here this morning. It is a great pleasure to interact with the business and industry leaders of a State like Tamil Nadu. We always admire the profile and potential of the businesses here. Similarly, Gujarat is known for its business friendly environment. It has been a leader in business not only in the country; but its people are known world over for their business acumen. In this age of globalisation, the traditional barriers are breaking down. Now, we can do business sitting thousands of miles away. Earlier, it was the raw materials which attracted people and projects. Now, the important factors are the spirit and environment of business, the stability of governments and their policies and the mechanisms for confidence building. I can say that Gujarat has to offer you a lot on these fronts.

Friends! I have primarily come here to personally invite you to visit Gujarat and be our guest during our upcoming Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit which is being held on 12th and 13th January, 2011. We have institutionalised this biennial event after a sustained hard work of eight years.

 It has grown from a mere investment promotion event to a growth propelling event.

It has grown from a business meet to an international knowledge sharing platform.

It has grown from a State level event to a Global event in true sense.

The last event itself, which was held in 2009, saw the participation of around forty countries, heads and representatives of various countries. This was in addition to a large number of national and international delegations from varied sectors. This event, which was held in the backdrop of a global recession, surprised everyone with investment agreements of US Dollars 240 billion. However, investment flow in the State is only a part of the objective of this event. The bigger objective is to do global networking for knowledge and technology sharing; learn the best practices and involve and encourage our people to think big and take up challenging projects. Gujarat, as you know, is a land of entrepreneurs and these events have further fuelled the enterprising spirit of the Gujaratis. But rather than resting here, now our intention is to further expand the scope of the event. This time, we have invited the Indian States as well as other countries to make use of this platform for business and technology tie ups and agreements for their respective locations. We will particularly encourage our companies to establish national and global partnerships through this platform. I once again invite you to this event with your associates and partners; with your family and friends; with your dreams and desires.

You may already be aware of what we are doing in Gujarat. However, I will touch upon certain aspects of our work which we have accomplished or we have on our hand. Friends! We have redefined the outlook and approach towards the development process in general and industrialisation in particular. We do not think in piecemeal. We take a holistic approach and try to take a quantum jump when it comes to development. We think on the small, participatory and inclusive mechanisms. At the same time, we work for the robust, modern and global benchmarks. To give you some examples on the development side, in the last eight years:

We have not only tripled the number of seats in our technical and management colleges, we have also set up seven new world class universities and an IIT.

We have not only made progress in oil and gas exploration; but we have laid down a 2200 km long gas grid to take it to the industries and households.

We have not only made several lakhs of water harvesting structures, but have also successfully implemented one of the world's longest canal system and water grid.

We have not only added Megawatts to our electricity generation; but we have taken it to each and every house hold. This unique scheme called Jyotigram has made Gujarat the only State to supply 24 hour electricity in rural areas to every household.

We have not only made the State water sufficient, but we are also ensuring efficient and economic use of water through micro-irrigation techniques.

We have not only set up world class hospitals making Gujarat a global medical tourism destination, but through our chiranjeevi Scheme have ensured access for the mothers and children to medical facilities.

We have not only strengthened our primary and secondary schools with physical and ICT infrastructure, we have also emphasised on the quality of teaching and learning.

We have not only put special schemes in key areas including cleanliness, urban management, education and afforestation; but we have implemented the schemes on a fast track basis in campaign mode.

These are a few examples to establish the fact that we have broken away from the traditional ways of governance where the pace of progress was slow; the delivery was sluggish and results were invisible. With our efforts of the last few years the growth of the GDP has been a consistent double digit growth. For last seven years, our average agriculture growth rate has been at 9.6% which is thrice the national average.

Similarly, in the infrastructure sector, we have redefined the approach and the level of thinking and have started implementing some of the most ambitious projects. We have fully commissioned one of the world's largest multipurpose dams- known as Narmada. We have successfully commissioned one of the most successful BRTS operations in Ahmedabad city. In this city, we have also undertaken one of the most exciting riverfront developments in the world. Many of our cities have been rated as environmentally best cities and economically fastest growing in the world. We are converting many of our roads to expressway standards. We are laying down seamless and robust connectivity to our ports, industrial clusters, and agri-marketing centres from other parts of the State. We have implemented the railway lines in private sector. We have established India's only two LNG terminals; to which we are going to add two more very shortly. We are not only upgrading our ports to make them world class. We are also adopting a holistic coastal development approach including development of new coastal cities. To develop the infrastructure we have perfected the mechanisms for Public-Private Partnership. For last three years, the PPP approach of Gujarat has been recognised as the best approach in the country by reputed forums.

Friends! When it comes to Industry and industrial infrastructure, Gujarat can boast of the best in the country. We house some of the biggest and the best industries world over. We are monopoly producers in the country in several sectors and global leader in a number of products. Our industrial infrastructure including the environmental infrastructure is regarded as the best in the country. We provide hassle free environment of business which starts right from the effective handholding for setting up projects. Transaction costs are low; labour problems are almost zero and power cuts are nil.

 That is the reason why many national and multi-national companies have made Gujarat their base.

That is the reason why in one Global summit we signed investment agreements worth US Dollars 240 billion.

That is the reason why our industrial growth is around 13%, consistently for a decade.

That is the reason that we contribute to 15% of India's exports.

And that is the reason that we have global presence in several sectors including Diamonds, without even having diamond mines.

We are going to not only retain this position but to further improve this pace. With Tata Nano and Bombardier, we are emerging as a new auto and transportation manufacturing hub. With our limestone reserves, we are emerging as the biggest cement producer in the country. We have already emerged as a big steel and pipe producer in the country. Now, we are going to become global players in these fields. And the best asset which we have is our 1600 km long coastline dotted with world class ports. These ports are the gateways to Gujarat's prosperity and expressways for the progress of the northern hinterland of the country.

However, friends! we are not going to rest with this. If India has to emerge; if India has to become a premiere economy in the world, I believe that the States like Gujarat have to do even better. I have always aimed at “Gujarat's growth for India's growth”. With this objective in mind, we are expanding the horizon of our industrial infrastructure, our Governance, our policies and processes. On the industrial infrastructure front, we moved from our traditional industrial clusters to industrial estates and further to establish 60 SEZs which is the largest number in the country. We are further moving to set up truly world class and big size Special Investment Regions which we call the SIRs. We have planned for 12 SIRs which will be Global hubs of economic activity. They will be supported by world class infrastructure, premium civic amenities and right policy environment. Setting up of these SIRs is in tune with the upcoming Dedicated Freight Corridor and the Industrial Corridor between Delhi and Mumbai. Similarly, SIRs will have a great synergy with our upcoming International Finance City known as GIFT. I am fond of saying that each of these SIRs is going to become “a new Gujarat within Gujarat”. Friends! these developments are historic. These developments have the potential to give a quantum jump to the entire Indian economy and to influence the global economy. I would sincerely suggest that you should not miss this opportunity.

Let me also add here that the achievements of Gujarat are all –pervasive. They are not region specific, sector specific or community specific. The people are not only beneficiaries but they are active partners in the process of development. The State Government is playing the role of a catalyst and facilitator. I am satisfied myself that we are able to do that in the best possible manner. Gujarat has emerged as a model of Good Governance not only in the country but in the entire world. Almost on a weekly basis, we have been receiving national and international awards in various areas of Governance, scheme formulation and their outcome. This year itself, my office has got United Nation's Public Service Award in the category of “Transparency, accountability and responsiveness” for improving the “effectiveness, efficiency and quality of public service'. This is just one example out of around 200 awards which we have received in last eight years. We are trying constantly for achieving higher and higher standards. Many of our Government offices, including my own office, are ISO certified. At my personal level, I feel it is my responsibility to motivate the team to keep up these standards, and try for betterment. I always believe in the approach of P2 G2 in Governance. This means Pro-Active and Pro-People Good Governance. These awards and successive support of the people to my Government are a testimony that we are in the right direction.

Friends! we are presently celebrating the Golden Jubilee year of formation of the Gujarat State. We are working hard to make this era of Gujarat a golden era. With that objective:

We are upgrading our amenities and infrastructure;

We are re-engineering our processes and procedures;

we are redefining our priorities and policies;

And we are re-energising ourselves and our systems.

During this year, we all have taken pledge to convert Gujarat into a globally preferred place to live in and to do business. I am confident that we will be able to do it. In the last few years, we have fundamentally changed the nature of our economy.

 From energy perspective, we have changed it to a gas based economy and now we are moving to renewable including solar and wind energy.

From water perspective, from a water starved State we have become a water rich State.

From budgetary perspective, from a revenue deficit State, we have become a revenue surplus State.

That is what is attracting investors and investments in the State. I always believe that Good Infrastructure attracts investments; Good Governance affirms it and Good Quality of life sustains it. Gujarat is a rare combination of all this. In addition, Gujarat has a unique spirit of business. We are constantly on job to further improve this eco-system. Our existing potential and future strategy offer enormous opportunities for you. I invite you to be part of our journey. I can visualise that our journey for excellence in all sectors will ignite your own big dreams. Thus, we will have a strong bonding to work together.

I assure you that I will be there with you to make your dreams come true.

Thank You!

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In last 10 years, around 3 million hectares of forest cover added in India, enhancing the combined forest cover to almost one-fourth of the country's total area: PM
India is on track to achieve its national commitment of Land degradation neutrality: PM
Restoration of 26 million hectares of degraded land aimed by 2030 to achieve an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent
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It is our sacred duty to leave a healthy planet for our future generations: PM

Excellency, President of the General Assembly,

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Namaste

I thank the President of the General Assembly for organising this High-Level Dialogue.

Land is the fundamental building block for supporting all lives and livelihoods. And, all of us understand that the web of life functions as an inter-connected system. Sadly, land degradation affects over two-thirds of the world today. If left unchecked, it will erode the very foundations of our societies, economies, food security, health, safety and quality of life. Therefore, we have to reduce the tremendous pressure on land and its resources. Clearly, a lot of work lies ahead of us. But we can do it. We can do it together.

Mr. President,

In India, we have always given importance to land and considered the sacred Earth as our mother. India has taken the lead to highlight land degradation issues at international forums. The Delhi Declaration of 2019 called for better access and stewardship over land, and emphasised gender-sensitive transformative projects. In India, over the last 10 years, around 3 million hectares of forest cover has been added. This has enhanced the combined forest cover to almost one-fourth of the country's total area.

We are on track to achieve our national commitment of Land degradation neutrality. We are also working towards restoring 26 million hectares of degraded land by 2030. This would contribute to India's commitment to achieve an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.

We believe that restoration of land can start a virtuous cycle of good soil health, increased land productivity, food security and improved livelihoods. In many parts of India, we have taken up some novel approaches. To give just one example, the Banni region in Rann of Kutch in Gujarat suffers from highly degraded land and receives very little rainfall. In that region, land restoration is done by developing grasslands, which helps in achieving land degradation neutrality.  It also supports pastoral activities and livelihood by promoting animal husbandry. In the same spirit, we need to devise effective strategies for land restoration while promoting indigenous techniques.

Mr. President,

Land degradation poses a special challenge to the developing world. In the spirit of South-South cooperation, India is assisting fellow developing countries to develop land restoration strategies. A Centre of Excellence is being set up in India to promote a scientific approach towards land degradation issues.

Mr. President,

It is mankind's collective responsibility to reverse the damage to land caused by human activity. It is our sacred duty to leave a healthy planet for our future generations. For their sake and ours, I extend my best wishes for productive deliberations at this High-Level Dialogue.

Thank you.

Thank you very much.