17 Jan 2018 12:30 IST

Reliance will invest ₹5,000 crore in Bengal: Mukesh

Bengal Global Business Summit gets proposals worth ₹17,000 cr on Day one

Reliance Industries Ltd will invest ₹5,000 crore in the next three years for the expansion of its petroleum outlets in West Bengal, its Chairman, Mukesh Ambani, said here on Tuesday.

This comes over and above the investments that the company will make towards strengthening its optical fibre network here, and its proposed electronics manufacturing facility for mobile phones, set-top boxes and television sets.

“We will invest ₹5,000 crore in the non-Jio business in West Bengal in retail petroleum outlets in the next three years,” said the RIL Chairman.

Ambani’s investment commitment came as the biggest takeaway of the ₹17,000 crore proposals that the State received during the first day of the Bengal Global Business Summit.

Other investments

For example, Sajjan Jindal, Chairman of JSW Group, who had committed investments to the tune of ₹10,000 crore in paint, steel and cement sectors, is still at the drawing board stage.

On the other hand, Saroj Poddar, Chairman of the Adventz Group, committed ₹1,000 crore, the details of which were not available.

Similarly, Sanjiv Goenka, Chairman of the RP-Sanjiv Goenka Group, committed to invest ₹1,000 crore in the group’s power distribution business. This apart, the group will continue to invest in setting up a medical facility (it already owns Woodlands Hospital) in the city – it would also look at a speciality carbon black making facility at Durgapur.

The investments for both these proposals were not mentioned. Goenka, while reiterating the previous year’s promise of investing ₹10,000 crore in the FMCG sector, said that RP-SG Group would look at setting up an FMCG park. No further investment break-up relating to the proposal was available.

Kishore Biyani, of Future Group, while claiming to be bullish on Bengal, reiterated his previous promise of setting up a garments park and opening more shop-in-shop formats of Biswa Bangla – the flagship handicrafts and apparel store of the State government.

The first Biswa Bangla store was opened at the group’s organised retail format – Central – in Kolkata last year.

The other major announcement came from H-Energy Private Limited. The company has signed an MoU with Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd (K Line) to jointly develop a project to import LNG. The project envisages an FRSU in the off-shore Digha region to provide re-gasified LNG (R-LNG) to customers in West Bengal and Bangladesh. The city gas project is expected to start in 24 months, said Darshan Hiranandani, CEO of H-Energy.

LN Mittal, CEO of ArcelorMittal, and Uday Kotak, CMD of Kotak Mahindra Bank, were also present among the industrialists, which also included Sanjiv Puri, CEO, ITC Ltd; CS Ghosh, MD and CEO of Bandhan Bank; and Purnendu Chatterjee of TCG, among others.

SpiceJet soars

Meanwhile, Ajay Singh, Chairman of SpiceJet, said his company was planning to start services between Kolkata and Chittagong later this year. Plans were also afoot to revive operations from the greenfield airport at Andal through services to Hyderabad and Bengaluru.

“We intend to have more flights from Kolkata to ASEAN countries. We also intend to give a fillip to tourism in the region through sea plane services. We may explore Gangasagar or Sunderbans for such services,” he said.

The company was also looking at the possibility of manufacturing sea-planes in West Bengal.