QUANZHOU: Smart cities are just one aspect of a modern India that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is dreaming. The other crucial element of the 21st century India will be the massive industrial parks that would also contribute significantly to make the country a manufacturing hub as planned by this NDA government.
China, which will clinch a deal to set up two industrial parks in Gujarat and Maharashtra during President Xi Jinping’s visit from September 17, has expertise in creating such zones. Currently, there are 200 industrial parks across the world’s most populated country and the biggest one with 200 firms over 200 sq kms is coming up on the outskirts of this city.

Shanghai, the commercial hub of the country alone boasts of 39 industrial parks and zones. These parks are of varying sizes and manufacture range of products However, a critical aspect associated with the industrial park is the displacement of local people while acquiring the land. Displacement and rehabilitation of locals could be the challenge for the Modi government while setting up the industrial parks. Gujarat had earlier faced decadeslong agitation over rehabilitation of local residents over Narmada dam.

Several other Indian states have faced strong opposition over rehabilitation of residents following land acquisition over industries. A 10-sq km industrial park near Ahmedabad will be set up with Chinese assistance and this will attract investments in excess of one billion USD, sources informed.

This park would have main focus on power transmission and generation equipment manufacturing. This park will also have banks, hotels, schools, recreational centres and other facilities.

Gujarat has the presence of Chinese companies in this sector, including Baoding Tianwei Baobian Electric Co.(TWBB), China Light and Power Company, Tebian Electric Apparatus Stock Co. Ltd(TBEA), Highly etc. Interestingly, Adani group has a unit in China for power sector machine manufacturing.

During Xi’s trip China will also sign an MoU for another Industrial park in Pune which will be in 6 sq kms and will attract $5 billion investment mainly in automobile manufacturing sector in phases over the next decade. First phase of Pune park which would require investments in excess of $500 million will be completed in three years.

Last June during vice-president Hamid Ansari’s visit, India and China had signed an MoU which outlined the work to set up four industrial parks.