Odisha clears investment from Chinese firm amid mounting Covid-19 worries

The timing of the nod to the China based investor may flag worries but the state authorities don't see it facing any hurdles.
The Odisha government has approved an investment proposal by a China-based footwear company even as worries mount over spread of Covid-19 pandemic and India’s new FDI rules trigger a flashpoint in uneasy Sino-Indian ties.

The State Level Single Window Clearance Authority (SLSWCA) gave the go-ahead to a proposal by Niren Kumar Anand for setting up a footwear manufacturing unit with an envisaged capacity of one million pieces at an investment of Rs 62.44 crore and promising employment for 620 people.

The timing of the nod to the China based investor may flag worries but the state authorities don't see it facing any hurdles.

“The promoter of the company has two plants one each in China and Hong Kong. They are keen to pivot away the manufacturing bases from China after the Covid-19 outbreak. But the Odisha plant will be a separate facility. And, we do not foresee any roadblock to this investment since it will be done in Indian rupee. The row is feared over FDI under automatic route”, said a source privy to the development.

The footwear company caters to its market demand generated mostly by South East Asia.

In September 2019, a delegation of Odisha officials led by the state industries minister had conducted roadshow to woo investors from China.

Apart from this footwear company, the SLSWCA cleared three other investments- the proposal of Kashvi International to set up 1.2 million tonne iron ore beneficiation plant at a cost of Rs 55.23 crore, Purosteel India Pvt Ltd’s proposal to set up a manufacturing unit for tubes & pipes PVD coating and finished sheets & profiles at an investment of Rs 53.42 crore and Rs 80-crore investment proposal by Odisha Carriers & Trade to set up three logistics parks cum fulfilment centres.

Separately, the High Level Clearance Authority (HLCA) chaired by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik approved two high value investments- the proposal by Rungta Mines Ltd to ramp up steelmaking capacity from 0.9 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) to 2.85 mtpa at a cost of Rs 7836.9 crore and Dhunseri Ventures Ltd’s plan to install maleic anhydride manufacturing unit with an investment of Rs 1,013.29 crore.


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