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City of foaming lakes and fire Bringing magic of Rajasthan alive Technology has raised the bar... Divide & Prosper Stirring the political cauldron Reducing carbon footprint... State of the States ODISHA Fanciful Rao and tech-savvy Naidu All these happened in TN… Global meets galore Bhubaneswar IIT cries for completion ‘E’ for enterprise MCL has a taste of judicial activism! A year of Telangana Leaky old lorries, mini cabs for techies... When business flocks to MP... Deputy Collector Sindhu! Strike over salary hike Miners asked to pay more Launch of ins vikrant, India’s first indigenous aircraft carrier Doubling production and tripling farmers’ income... Time to wake up Hype on Hyperloop Monsoon fury Development depends on land availability... KNPP with the grid Wouldn’t the Mahatma like clean restrooms in our cities! Winds of change... Pioneering education model Bifurcation yet to end water wars States - Kerala Municipal Elections Nod to cow slaughter bill Enchanting and enterprising Tamil Nadu Homestays, a budding tourism industry KCR’s I-day bonanza State under siege Promise of a productive year Flurry of collaborations inked by AP Inter-State boundary Illegal mining of sand Waste disposal model Green crimes galore State Forward It’s Karnataka chalo for Amit Shah? Infrastructure to the FORE Land scams rock AP & TS TN to suffer serious loss States - Odisha A giant push for millets MOUs worth Rs.10.54 lakh crore signed Benevolent businessthan... TN can leverage NLC’s strengths... Enticing pest traps AP in better shape Of development and welfare Info-Park, more space States Roundup Industrial corridors to boost economy Thalaivaa TN to suffer serious loss Tasks for the new government Mango Diplomacy Lingayats get a reminder: it’s poll time A blueprint for the future Kochi Metro Rail Project It indeed is attractive for investments More government apps Come to Tamil Nadu where the action is... With agriculture at its heart... SIPB clears big proposals Oh, la la. Power for all Land acquisition policy is ahead of national policy... Bus services hit Infra boost to the new capital KTR releases Annual Report Vedanta to close Lanjigarh refinery A neta at it again! Competing for good: Tale of two states Global Investors Meet Post Poned Why the Congress won in Karnataka CII to set up tourism bureaus An industrious idea
Come to Tamil Nadu where the action is...
TN Global Investors Meet - Curtain Raisers

“It took around 12 months to bring Ford to Tamil Nadu. The company had 43 parameters to evaluate on investing in a region. Chennai was competing with other industrialised states and countries; but our efforts succeeded. With Ford and Hyundai, the true automobile revolution began. The strong support of the state government was the critical factor in achieving this,” said Velmurugan.

With the entry of giants like Ford and Hyundai, who brought several of their vendors along with them, auto component manufacture in the state grew bigger and attained a critical mass. This soon became an attractive base for several automobile majors like Renault Nissan, BMW, Yamaha, Daimler,... to set up shop in Tamil Nadu, he said.


Not just incentives attract investments...

“Until 2004, Tamil Nadu didn’t have a single electronics company of size. That was the time when Nokia announced of plans to open a manufacturing facility in India. Immediately the state government constituted a core team and we met the CEO in Delhi. He was surprised, as we had come the day after the announcement. We satisfied several criteria stipulated in quick time, Nokia’s plant opened in 2005 was a major breakthrough heralding the electronics revolution of Tamil Nadu. The investor-friendly support of the state government was cited as the most critical factor that tilted Nokia in favour of Tamil Nadu,” said Velmurugan.

The investment climate is the result of several factors - quality infrastructure, mature eco-system, availability of skilled manpower, port logistics, ease of doing business, track record of industrial relations and above all, strong support from the state government.

It is not just incentives,” said Velmurugan.


Strong communication infrastructure...

Though Chennai caught up late with the ICT wave, several of the government’s initiatives have helped to catch up for the time lost. Today Chennai ranks third in the country in software exports. The Siruseri IT Park developed over 1000 acres, is the largest IT park in Asia and the Old Mahabalipuram Road (OMR) is home to several IT majors. Chennai has three submarine cables connecting other countries with a total bandwidth of 14.8 terra bits per second (tbps). “We are using not even 10 – 15 per cent of it now and it is available to us for the next 25 years. That’s why Chennai is leading in back office operations which requires 24 x 7 live communication infrastructure,” pointed Velmurugan.

World Bank’s only back office outside Washington is in Chennai. This soon attracted CitiBank’s card operations, Standard Chartered’s virtual headquarters for more than 100 countries, ABN Amro, HSBC and Royal Bank of Scotland.


Go for whale hunting, not fishing...

“In the Guidance Bureau we have a saying: when you go for investment promotion, you always go for whale hunting and not fishing. You can create an impact only when we get the blue whale and small fishes come along with it. Guidance Bureau under state government does a lot of whale hunting,” pointed Velmurugan with understandable pride.

Companies like Michelin, Saint Gobain, Apollo Tyres, Daimler... have opened plants here. Feng Tay Enterprises Co Ltd, a shoe manufacturing company in the Cheyyar SEZ that employs  17,000 in a single factory is the single largest supplier of sports shoes, said Velmurugan.

A student of economics who holds a M Phil from the Glasgow University, Velmurugan was the1980 batch topper in Indian Economic Services. From 1995 he has been at the Guidance Bureau helping to change industrial horizon of the state. Guidance Bureau has acted as the single window clearance for projects of the state.

 Global Investors Meet is yet another whale hunting: “we have set a modest target of Rs 100,000 crore but with 100 per cent germination rate; in several other states, the germination rate is just around five per cent,” said Velmurugan.


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