Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Tuesday, Feb 03, 2004
Industry & Economy
Centre gives nod for Coimbatore industrial cluster project
Coimbatore , Feb. 2
THE Union Government has given its nod for the establishment of a `Pump, Motor, Foundry and Allied Industries Cluster' here at an estimated investment of Rs 66 crore.
While the Centre would be extending a grant of Rs 49.5 crore for this project, the State Government would be providing Rs 1.21 crore as grant and stakeholders and other institutions would be bearing the balance cost.
Giving details of the project here, Mr C.P. Radhakrishnan, Coimbatore MP, and Mr Tee. Narayanaswami, President, Coimbatore District Small Industries Association (Codissia), said the Coimbatore industrial cluster would benefit industries such as manufacturers of pumps and motors, foundries and allied industries such as capacitors, electrical and electronic controls, electrical stampings and other laminations, engineering plastics and other polymer products.
As part of the project, it has been planned to establish modern testing, research and development centre for pumps and motors, advanced tool room, research facility for energy conservation methods and techniques, sand reclamation for foundries, a world class rubber components testing, design and development centre, an International Business Information Centre, modern CAD/CAM centre etc.
The Codissia President said the International Centre for Advanced Manufacturing Technology (ICAMT), a wing of the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and the National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC) had expressed their desire to participate in the project which was cleared by the Union Commerce Minister, Mr Arun Jaitley, a few days ago.
He expected the project to generate an additional 50,000 jobs in the region, of which nearly 20,000 would be for women.
Mr Narayanaswami said ICAMT was now working at identifying the expert organisations from Italy for pumps and from the US and Ukraine for the foundry industries. Already around 500 industrial units have registered themselves to be covered by the proposed industrial cluster project and he expected the numbers to go up once awareness about the project spreads. While 50 per cent of the work may be completed in the first year of the project, the balance would be executed in the subsequent two years.
Mr Radhakrishnan said the project sanctioned for Coimbatore was the second such cluster programme approved by the Centre for implementation in Tamil Nadu and the other project was the knitwear cluster sanctioned for Tirupur. Incidentally, both the projects would come up in Coimbatore constituency represented by him. He said he was also keen on the formation of the gem and jewellery industry cluster in Coimbatore, which had faced some opposition from workers engaged in the jewellery industry due to fears that it would lead to job losses.
Pointing out that the new Exim policy will free the jewellery industry from many shackles, Mr Radhakrishnan was hopeful of allaying the fears of the workers and bringing this project to Coimbatore.
The MP said there was an imperative need for the local pump manufacturers to diversify their product range to meet the needs of different industrial applications such as chemicals, solid waste pumping, oil and natural gas rather than concentrating on farm sector as they seemed to be doing at present. He also would support the proposal by the foundry industry for an industrial cluster programme for their industry.
Mr Narayanaswami expected that once the project work was completed, the turnover of nearly 2,100 small and medium units engaged in different engineering activities in the region would go up from Rs 2,700 crore to Rs 4,725 crore.
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