SRINAGAR, MAY 30, 2015 – Assuring the entrepreneurs, national and international buyers on strengthening the base of industry and handicraft sector in the State, the Chief Minister, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, today emphasized upon promoting ‘Brand Kashmir’ to protect our exceptional hand-made products from fakes being sold in national and overseas markets, in the name of Kashmir Art.
Making a specific mention of the famous crafts which has distinguished Kashmir all over the world, Mufti Sayeed said he was hopeful that foreign as well as country-bound buyers will be riveted by the wide range of handicraft and handloom products made in the State. “Handicraft items worth Rs. 1700 crore were exported last year, out of which products worth Rs. 1200 crore were sold in overseas markets,” he stated.
Stressing upon laying a sound edifice for good governance and transparent administration in the State, the Chief Minister said ‘Ease of Doing Business’ will be accorded highest priority and e-Governance will be introduced to facilitate industrialists so that they are able to get their jobs done in real time.
Mufti Sayeed said during his earlier stint in 2002, he announced a Special Package of Incentives for industrial development and a new Industrial Policy which was appreciated for being more comprehensive and investor-friendly. “Those initiatives have helped us in bringing in an investment of Rs. 6,342 crore and creation of employment opportunities for 95,312 persons in the industrial sector,” he added.
Referring to the Budget speech of the Finance Minister, the Chief Minister pointed out a number of announcements made in it for Industry and Handicraft sector including concessions in VAT remission by extending it for local industry for 2015-16, creation of Land Bank of over 10,000 kanals and allocating Rs. 35 crore for Capital Investment Subsidy for plant and machinery.
Minister for Industry & Commerce, in his address, congratulated KCC&I for organizing the 6thInternational Buyer-Seller Meet. He assured that the Government will seriously consider all demands of the industrial fraternity and facilitate marketing of export-oriented products.
Speaking on the occasion, Financial Commissioner, I&C, said that in order to promote exports, the Government will soon operationalize Inland Container Depot at Rangreth and promote registration of our genuine hand-made products under Geographical Indication (GI).
Earlier, Mufti Sayeed went around various stalls showcasing exquisite handicraft products including shawls, embroidery, carpets, silverware, leather and crewel items. He appreciated the skill of the artisans involved in making of such wonderful hand-made items.
The Chief Minister also viewed a 15-minute documentary on Kashmir Crafts, depicting its history and resilience during difficult times.
Principal Secretary to Chief Minister, B. B. Vyas, Principal Secretary, Finance, Naveen Chaudhary, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Asgar Samoon, Director Tourism, Kashmir & MD JKTDC, Farooq Ahmad Shah, MD SIDCO, Kifayat Rizvi, Deputy Commissioner, Srinagar, Farooq Ahmad Lone, besides MDs of several PSUs of I&C Department and President of Kashmir Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Sheikh Ashiq, were also present on the occasion.