Japanese delegation meets Amarinder, investments in Punjab discussed

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New Delhi, March 30 (IANS) Japan has evinced interest in investing in Punjab and partnering the state across key segments of growth and development.

A high-level Japanese delegation, which included the Japanese envoy to India, Kenji Hiramatsu, and Mitsubishi Managing Director Kazunori Konishi, met Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh here on Thursday to discuss a range of possible areas of investment and collaboration.

A spokesman for the state government described the discussions as preliminary but added that it will pave the way for more intensive discussions in future.

Mitsubishi officials made a presentation to the Chief Minister, listing several important areas for possible investment.

These included Power, Smart Cities, (Automated Guideway Transit), Industrial Parks and Captive Power Plants, besides strengthening of some existing projects.

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The Chief Minister showed interest in having a rapid transportation alternative for easy commuting for people in congested cities like Ludhiana, Amritsar and Jalandhar.

Amarinder also discussed development of roads and highways as a key step towards improvement of Punjab’s infrastructure.

“Another important area that came up for discussion during the meeting was improvement in agriculture and horticulture, with the Chief Minister noting that despite small land holdings, Japanese farmers were able to deliver high yields,” the spokesman said.

The grave problem of stubble burning in Punjab was also discussed, with the Japanese team offering solutions, based on their own experience of destroying stubble in a safe and eco-friendly way.

Punjab has been witnessing exodus of industry from the state in the past over one decade owing to tax holiday offered in neighbouring states like Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand.

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