Inaugurates Summit of Success Pavillion, Science City
Industry leaders praise Prime Minister’s vision
“Vibrant Gujarat is not just an event of branding, but more than that it is also an event of bonding”
“We were not just thinking about reconstruction but were also planning for the state’s future and we made the Vibrant Gujarat Summit the chief medium for this ”
“Main attraction of Gujarat was good governance, fair and policy-driven governance, an equal system of growth and transparency”
“Core elements of the success of Vibrant Gujarat are idea, imagination and implementation”
“Vibrant Gujarat has become an institution from a one-time event”
“2014’s goal of making India the growth engine of the world is finding resonance among international agencies and experts”
“Next 20 years are more important than last 20 years”

Present on the stage are Governor of Gujarat Acharya Devvrat ji, popular Chief Minister Shri Bhupendrabhai Patel, my colleague in Parliament Shri C.R. Patil, Ministers of Gujarat government, all eminent friends from the industrial world, other dignitaries and all my family members present here. 20 years ago we sowed a small seed. Today it has grown into such a huge and vibrant banyan tree. I am very delighted to be amidst you today on the completion of 20 years of Vibrant Gujarat Summit. I remember, years ago I had once said that Vibrant Gujarat is not just an event of branding, but more importantly it is an event of bonding. This successful summit may be a brand for the world, but for me it is a symbol of a strong bond. This is the bond between me and the 7 crore citizens of Gujarat as well as their capabilities. This is the bond which is based on their immense love for me

Friends,

Today I am also reminded of the words of Swami Vivekananda ji. Swami Vivekananda ji had said that every work has to go through three stages. First, people ridicule it, then oppose it and then accept it, especially when the idea is ahead of its time. 20 years is a long period. Young people of today's generation may not even be aware of the situation in Gujarat after the massive earthquake in 2001. Even before the earthquake, Gujarat was facing severe famine for a long time. Thousands of people had died in the earthquake that followed. Lakhs of people were affected by it and they had to leave their homes. Apart from famine and earthquake, another major incident had happened in Gujarat at the same time. Madhavpura Mercantile Cooperative Bank had collapsed, due to which 133 more cooperative banks were affected. There was chaos in the economic life of the entire Gujarat. In a way, the financial sector of Gujarat was in crisis. At that time, I had become an MLA for the first time. That role was also new for me. I had no experience of running a government. But the challenge was massive. Meanwhile, another incident had happened. The heart-wrenching incident of Godhra took place and in the circumstances that followed, Gujarat had burst into flames of violence. Nobody could have imagined such a dire situation. Even though I did not have much experience as a Chief Minister at that time, I had unwavering faith in Gujarat and the people of my Gujarat. However, those who carry an agenda were busy analyzing the events in their own way even at that time. It was said that youth from Gujarat, industries from Gujarat, businessmen from Gujarat would all move out, migrate and Gujarat would be so devastated that it would become a huge burden for the country. A conspiracy was hatched to defame Gujarat in front of the world. An attempt was made to create an atmosphere of despair. It was said that Gujarat would never be able to stand on its own feet. Even in that crisis, I resolved that no matter what the circumstances were, I would pull Gujarat out of it. We were thinking not only of the reconstruction of Gujarat but also of its future. And we made Vibrant Gujarat Summit a major medium for the same. This became a medium to lift the confidence of Gujarat and through it to talk to the world eye to eye. It became a medium to showcase the decision-making process and focused approach of the Gujarat government to the whole world. It became a medium to highlight the industrial potential of Bharat including Gujarat in front of the world. It became a medium to show the unlimited possibilities of different sectors present in Bharat. This became a medium to utilize Bharat's talent within the country. It became another medium to showcase the divinity, grandeur and cultural heritage of Bharat before the world. The timing of Vibrant Gujarat was also an example of how closely we worked. We organized Vibrant Gujarat when Navratri and Garba were in full swing in Gujarat. We made it a festival of industrial development of Gujarat.

Friends,

Today I want to remind you all of one more thing. It's been 20 years, and it is very natural to remember all kinds of sweet and sour things. Today the world is witnessing the success of Vibrant Gujarat. But Vibrant Gujarat was organized in such an environment when even the then-Central Government had shown indifference towards the development of Gujarat. I have always said that the development of Gujarat leads to the development of the country. But those running the central government at that time also had linked the development of Gujarat with politics. Central government ministers at that time used to refuse to come to the Vibrant Gujarat Summit. Personally, they used to tell me that they would definitely come, but later on they would refuse due pressures from higher authorities. Forget about cooperation, they were busy creating obstacles. Foreign investors were threatened not to go to Gujarat. Even after so much intimidation, foreign investors came to Gujarat even though they were not given any special incentives in Gujarat. They used to come here because they experienced good governance, fair governance, policy driven governance, an equal system of growth, and transparent government in their everyday lives. You can imagine, when Vibrant Gujarat was started, there were not enough big hotels in Gujarat where those many foreign guests could stay. When all the government guest houses were filled, the question before us was where would the rest of the people stay? In such a situation, I requested the business houses to offer their guest houses so that it could be used for the foreign guests. We even used the guest houses of the Universities here. Arrangements were made for the guests to stay in those guest houses. Some people also had to stay in Baroda.

Friends,

I still remember, when Vibrant Gujarat was organized in 2009, there was an atmosphere of recession all over the world. The world was in the grip of recession. And everyone including our officers were asking me to postpone Vibrant Gujarat that time. They believed that it would flop, because no one would attend. But even at that time I said, "No, this will not stop. It will be held. Even if it fails then there will be criticism at the most but the habit should not be broken". And even then, when the entire world was in the grip of recession, another new chapter of success was added in 2009's Vibrant Gujarat Summit.

Friends,

The success of Vibrant Gujarat can also be understood from its development journey. Some 100 participants and delegates were associated with this summit in 2003. It was a very small event. Today more than 40,000 participants and delegates take part in this summit. In 2003, only a few countries participated in this summit; today 135 countries participate in it. At the beginning of this summit in 2003, around 30 exhibitors came; while now more than 2000 exhibitors come to this summit.

Friends,

There are several specific reasons behind the success of Vibrant Gujarat. Its success includes core elements like idea, imagination and implementation. If I talk about the idea, then, Vibrant Gujarat was such a unique concept, about which very few people in Bharat had heard. But with the success achieved over time, people understood its importance. After a while, other states also started organizing their own business and investor summits. Another important factor is imagination. We dared to think differently. In those days, we were thinking of something very big at the state level; something which could not be done even at the country level. We demonstrated courage to make a country our partner country. The idea of a small state of a country making a developed country as its partner country may seem strange today. Just imagine what would have happened at that time? But we did it. This was a massive thing for a state in the country.

Friends,

No matter how good the idea and imagination are, it is very important to mobilize the entire system and deliver results. This is a task that requires extensive planning, investment in capacity building, attention to every detail, and tireless hard work so that an event of this scale can be organised. I have said it earlier also, with the same officers, same resources and same regulations, we did something that no one had ever thought of!

Friends,

Another identity of Vibrant Gujarat Summit is worth noting. From a one-time event, Vibrant Gujarat has today turned into an institution whose system and process runs automatically throughout the year within and outside the government. Chief Ministers changed, almost all the old leading officers have retired. Those officers who might have come to Gujarat for the first time in 2001 are managing Gujarat today. They have become senior officers now. Times have changed, but one thing did not change. Every time Vibrant Gujarat kept touching new heights of success. This could happen because we institutionalized the processes. This strength is the basis for the consistency of this success. And for this, the same emphasis was laid on infrastructure. On certain occasions, programmes were held in Tagore Hall, sometimes the events were organized here in Science City by setting up tents and today we have Mahatma Mandir for the same events.

 

Friends,

The spirit with which we took the Vibrant Gujarat Summit forward is rarely seen in our country. We used to hold this summit in Gujarat but we wanted to benefit every state through it. There are very few people who have been able to understand our thinking even today. They are sitting curled up in their own circle. At that time, a Chief Minister of Gujarat used to urge the Chief Ministers of the other states that since a summit is being held, you too should set up your stalls; you should also hold seminars. Other states were also given the opportunity to participate in the Vibrant Gujarat Summit. We had invited the states to come, put their energies into it and take advantage. We organized a state seminar in which many states used to come. And even during the Vibrant Summit, different summits were being held like the Odisha summit, the Telugu summit, the summit of Haryana, or Jammu and Kashmir and so on. Apart from that, there was a national summit of Ayurveda in Gujarat, a huge summit of progressive partners, All India Lawyers' Summit etc. We used to continuously create various types of summits. We were also developing Gujarat under the national vision.

Friends,

What was the identity of Gujarat in the 20th century? We were known as a trader state. We used to buy from one place and sell at another place. They used to survive on whatever commission they got in the process. This was our image. But leaving aside that image of the 20th century, in the 21st century Gujarat has become an agricultural powerhouse along with trade, a financial hub and has developed an identity as an industrial and manufacturing ecosystem. Apart from this, Gujarat's trade-based reputation has also become quite strong. Behind all this is the success of events like Vibrant Gujarat, which is working as an incubator of ideas, innovation and industries. We have thousands of success stories and case studies from the last 20 years. This was possible with effective policy making and efficient project implementation. There has been an unprecedented increase in investment and employment in textile and apparel industries due to which our exports are also making records. In the last two decades, we have reached new heights in different sectors. Compared to 2001, our investment in the automobile sector has increased almost 9 times. Our manufacturing output has increased 12 times. In the chemical sector, Gujarat has become the choice of many companies in the country and around the world. Today Gujarat's contribution in Bharat's dyes & intermediates manufacturing is about 75 percent.

 

Gujarat has the highest share in investment in Agro and food processing industry in the country. Today, more than 30,000 food processing units are operating in Gujarat. In the pharmaceutical sector, Gujarat is emerging as an innovation-driven, knowledge-focused pharma industry. Gujarat has more than 50 percent share in medical devices manufacturing and about 80 percent share in cardiac stents manufacturing. Gujarat's success in the gem and jewellery industry is amazing. Gujarat accounts for more than 70 percent of the world's processed diamonds. Gujarat's contribution to Bharat's diamond exports is 80 percent. Talking about ceramic sector, Morbi region of Gujarat alone holds 90 percent share in the ceramic market of the country. There are about 10,000 manufacturing units of ceramic tiles, sanitary-ware and different ceramic products here. Gujarat is also one of the top exporters in Bharat. Last year the state exported about $2 billion. Defence manufacturing will be a huge sector in the coming times.

Friends,

When we started Vibrant Gujarat, our intention was that this state should become the growth engine of the country's progress. Do you understand what I am saying? When we were working here, we had a vision. We believed that Gujarat should become the growth engine of the country. I guess a few people have understood it. The country has seen this vision turn into a reality. In 2014, when we were given the opportunity to serve the country, our goal also expanded, and our goal was to make Bharat the growth engine of the entire world. Today international agencies and experts are speaking in this tone. Today Bharat is the fastest growing economy in the world. Now we are standing at a turning point where Bharat is going to become a global economic powerhouse. Now this is Bharat's guarantee to the world and my guarantee to you too. You will see before your eyes; within a few years Bharat will be among the top 3 largest economies of the world. This is Modi's guarantee. Therefore, I would also like to make an appeal to the guests present here and to the Indian industry. All of you should think about such sectors where Bharat can create new potential for itself, or can further improve its position. We also have to think about how Vibrant Gujarat can give momentum to this mission. Just as Bharat is leading the world today in the field of sustainability, we also need to think about how our startup ecosystem can get maximum benefits from this summit. Today agri-tech is an emerging sector. Food processing sector is expanding rapidly. With the increasing use of Shri Anna, our millets have today found a pride of place on the dining tables around the world. New opportunities are being created with the use of Shri Anna. The changes in processing, packaging, and the possibilities of taking it to the global market have brought many new opportunities.

 

In today's deeply connected world, the need for institutions of financial cooperation is increasing rapidly. Gujarat already has a GIFT city, whose relevance is increasing every day. GIFT city reflects our whole of government approach. Here the Centre, State and IFSC authorities work together to create the best regulatory environment in the world. We should intensify efforts to make it a globally competitive financial market place. For this we can take advantage of our large domestic demand. The aim before Vibrant Gujarat is to further strengthen the GIFT city so that its global presence expands.

Friends,

While discussing the success of Vibrant Gujarat, I would also say that this is not the time to stop. The next 20 years are more important than the last 20 years. When Vibrant Gujarat completes 40 years, Bharat will be nearing the centenary of its independence. This is the time when Bharat will have to frame such a roadmap, which will help present the country to the world as a developed and a self-reliant nation by 2047. I am confident that all of you will definitely work in this direction, will take the needed steps, and will definitely come forward. Currently the Vibrant Summit is going to be held in January. The state government and friends from the industrial world here might be engaged with full force, but it is a matter of great delight for me that today when you invited me, I turned 20 years younger and was lost in the old memories; how Gujarat was pulled out of those terrible days and where has it reached today? What can be greater satisfaction than this in life, friends? I once again congratulate the Gujarat government for commemorating these 20 years. You gave me the opportunity to relive the old days by being amidst you. So, I am very grateful. My best wishes!

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