The two-day 5th Progressive Punjab Investors’ Summit 2023 will commence in Mohali on Thursday with the theme ‘Invest in the Best’. The summit, which aims to showcase the state as a “preferred investment destination” and its vision for growth and opportunities, will have a total of nine sessions organised across areas with high growth potential, including agri-food processing, textiles, healthcare, education, tourism, information technology, and start-ups and exports. These also include two sessions on Japan and UK, according to officials.
They said the objective of these sessions is to attract potential investment and business opportunities, build relationships, and engage with start-ups on new ideas and solutions. In the concluding session on February 24, the highest taxpayers from the local industry will be honoured, said one of the officials quoted above.
Chief minister Bhagwant Mann had travelled to Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Mumbai, and Germany to meet business leaders and representatives of the industry associations, and invited them to the summit. During an interaction with media persons here last week, he said that investments worth ₹38,175 crore were firmed up in the first 11 months of his government and more would follow after the summit. Asked if the state government has set any target for investment proposals or signing memorandums of understanding (MoUs), a senior official of the industries and commerce department said they are not in the race for signing MoUs but are looking at building long-term relations and firm investments.
Meanwhile, Abohar MLA Sandeep Jakhar, who has been invited to the summit, drew the attention of the chief minister towards a problem being faced by industrialists in his area. “Thank you for the invitation for the Invest Punjab Summit @BhagwantMann sab..FYI, in the Abohar Industrial Focal Point, industrialists have not been getting electricity connections for new units since the past one year due to inter departmental issues between PSIEC & PSPCL..,” the Congress MLA tweeted.
Improve law-&-order before hosting investors’ summit: Sukhbir
Training guns at the Punjab government, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal on Wednesday said the Bhagwant Mann-led dispensation should hold the “Invest Punjab” summit in the state only once the law-and-order situation comes under control and the government is in a position to offer adequate power and incentives to the industry.
During his visit to Jalandhar on Wednesday, Sukhbir asked the chief minister Mann to stop wasting public money on “false advertisements”. He said the government seems to be more interested in releasing full-page advertisements of Invest Punjab’s success from Kashmir to Kanyakumari than actually creating facilities to attract investors.
“When the state government, that runs from Delhi, has nothing lucrative to offer to the industry in the state, and the ruling party leaders are directly involved in criminal activities, like excise scam, mining scam and even extortions, why would anyone like to take the risk of investing in the state?” questioned Sukhbir.
“Punjab’s industry is shifting to Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, and even Jammu & Kashmir. That is a matter of serious concern,” he said.