Millennium Post

Plans afoot to take village industries turnover to Rs 2L cr in 5 yrs: Gadkari

New Delhi: Union Minister Nitin Gadakri on Friday said that plans are afoot to take khadi and village industries turnover to Rs 2 lakh crore in the next five years from 75,000 crore at present.

Urging the industry to expand its share in global trade to about 10 per cent, MSME Minister Gadkari also urged players to grab the opportunity to expand in the wake of China –that accounts for 17 per cent of the global trade business –battling increased cost and difficulties. "The turnover of khadi and village industries is Rs 75,000 crore at present. Steps are on to take it to Rs 2 lakh crore in five years," Gadkari said while addressing industry body Ficci's 92nd annual convention here.

He said infrastructure sectors along with MSME has potential to help India becoming USD 5 trillion economy.

"China has a good record in trade business and accounts for 17 per cent of the global exports. Our share is barely 2.6 per cent. We have an opportunity to take it to 8 to 10 per cent.. especially when China is facing difficulties at present besides increase in costs. We should eye at increasing our share," the minister said, adding "it is a blessing in disguise".

He said he was "saddened" to see India importing commodities like coal, newsprint and other things despite having huge dry-fuel reserves and scope of indigenous production.

"I am saddened to see huge imports...It is a matter of concern that we have capacity to export huge coal but we are importing it. Coal can be transported from Paradip port to Kandla for power plants in the Western region. This will bring down power prices by 35 to 40 paise per unit," Gadkari said.

He added newsprint was being imported while domestic paper mills remained shut despite India has potential for huge bamboo plantation, which can not only revive papers mills but can be export oriented too.

"There are 38,000 industries under MSME which are export oriented. The MSME sector has created 11 crore jobs so far and we intend to create another 5 crore jobs in five years," the Minister said.

In keeping with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of a New India by 2022, the idea is transform 115 backward districts across the country with large number of initiatives, including honey, bamboo, ethanol, methanol, bio CNG and other products.

He also said these districts can contribute significantly to the USD 5 trillion economy and special emphasis has been laid on Jammu & Kashmir where 20,000 women would be linked to handkerchief production.

Expressing concern over Rs 7 lakh crore crude imports per annum, Gadkari said the government aimed at reducing imports by at least 2 lakh crore in five years and special emphasis was being given on bio and other fuel production.

Closed sugar mills could be revived and bio-fuel could be produced from it, he added.

About highways sector, he said 22 green expressways are being built, including Rs 1.3 lakh crore Delhi-Mumbai expressway.

After successful roll out of the electronic toll collection, the sector eyes about Rs 35,000 crore toll income in a year,

he said.

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