Hemant Sharma, Principal Secretary, Industries
The countdown has begun to the hosting of the third edition of Make in Odisha, the grandest investment summit in the state. To be organized from November 30 to December 4 this year, the conclave promises to be a bigger event than its previous two avatars. The man helming the preparedness of the showpiece conference is none other than the suave and articulate Hemant Sharma(‘Make in Odisha’ Showman). Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has reposed enormous faith in his hard-working mandarin by assigning him the plum portfolios of industries and MSMEs.
Known to be a profoundly efficient officer obsessed with outcomes, Sharma(‘Make in Odisha’ Showman) has already set the trailblazing for the event. He has kicked off the outreach efforts for the industries department in the run-up to the mega conclave. Recently, Sharma(‘Make in Odisha’ Showman) and his team of officials connected with the wannabe investors at an investment roadshow in Bengaluru. The delegation had an exclusive and one-to-one tete-a-tete with representatives of 20 companies spread across sectors like apparel & textile, aerospace & defense, plastics & petrochemicals, metals downstream, auto components and food processing. The state delegation waxed eloquent on the state’s business ecosystem, policy framework and investment opportunities for companies.
Sharma(‘Make in Odisha’ Showman) says the state government has induced rapid industrial growth. Fifty percent of value addition for the metals based industries is proposed to be done within the state. And, in the perception of the investor community and other stakeholders, Odisha has moved up a few notches higher than its peers. After winning the coveted ‘leader status’ at the last Ease of Doing Business rankings, Odisha has now been adjudged the ‘Champion State’ for clocking the highest growth rate in exports.
He believes that Odisha offers a robust policy ecosystem along with the availability of skilled manpower Bhubaneswar is both the Sports capital as well as the new Skill capital. The average time needed to grant all clearances for a project in Odisha has shrunk to 20 days, courtesy the string of reforms taken up by the state industries department. Striking among them is the role of the Government of Odisha Single Window Investor Facilitation & Tracking (GOSWIFT)- this app tracks the entire life cycle of investment from conceptualization to implementation.
In the first two editions of Make in Odisha(‘Make in Odisha’ Showman) combined, the state has pocketed investments of the order of Rs 6.4 lakh crore, promising employment opportunities for over seven lakh people. Under Sharma’s(‘Make in Odisha’ Showman) able stewardship, the state government has approved fresh investment projects valued at Rs 2.43 lakh crore.