India’s leading conglomerates Reliance, Aditya Birla Group and Tata on Friday committed to invest more than Rs 1 lakh crore in Uttar Pradesh to expand their businesses in the near future.
Reliance Industries will invest Rs 75,000 crore in rolling out 5G mobile telephony services, expanding retail network and setting up renewable energy capacity over the next four years, its Chairman Mukesh Ambani announced at the UP Global Investors Summit here. Similarly, Aditya Birla Group Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla said his group has committed Rs 25,000 crore investment across its various businesses such as cement, metals, chemicals, financial services and renewable energy in the state.
Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran said group firm Air India SATS will set up an integrated multi-modal cargo hub at the upcoming Jewar airport in partnership with Zurich Airport. In his address at the event, Ambani also announced foray of the oil-to-telecom conglomerate into bio-energy business, converting agriculture waste into gas which can be used as fuel in industries, run automobiles or light kitchen stoves. His group will set up 10 GigaWatts of renewable energy capacity and roll out 5G services across the state in the next 10 months.
“We plan to invest an additional Rs 75,000 crore in UP over the next four years across Jio, retail, and renewable businesses,” he said. “These new investments will create an additional over 1 lakh jobs in the state,” Ambani said, adding the investment will be in addition to Rs 50,000 crore already invested in the state. Reliance Jio, the nation’s largest telecom company by subscribers, will complete its rollout of 5G to cover every town and village in the state by December 2023. Stating that this will help modernise all areas of business and industry, agriculture, social sector, and governance, he said the company plans to do pilots on its two new innovative initiatives — Jio School and Jio AI Doctor — to bring top-class education and healthcare in the most affordable way to villages and small towns across Uttar Pradesh.
Birla, in his address said,”as an early investor in the industrial journey of the state, we feel enthused by the rapid progress that the state is making.” Today, the state can rightly be considered one of the key states driving India’s journey towards a USD 5 trillion economy, he said. “And therefore, we are committing further investments to the tune of Rs 25,000 crore across our businesses, cement, metals, chemicals, financial services and renewable energy,” he added. He also said the group’s seven businesses have a significant presence in Uttar Pradesh, anchored by over 30,000 employees with an overall investment of Rs 40,000 crore.
Investors are already taking note of the changing face of Uttar Pradesh as over the last three years ending September 2022, the state has attracted FDI worth USD 1.1 billion, Birla said, adding the state was earlier a laggard in industrial development despite having a large consumption base. “That picture is slowly and dramatically changing. Thanks to a pragmatic and industry-friendly administration and rapid pace of infrastructure development,” he said. Chandrasekaran said national carrier Air India, which was acquired by the group last year, plans to connect every part of Uttar Pradesh to the rest of India and potentially to important destinations of the world.
“I am happy to say that we are going to build an integrated multi-modal air cargo (hub) through Air India SATS with our partner Zurich Airport in the new Jewar airport,” he said. Air India SATS is the ground handling services arm of Air India. Chandrasekaran said the group’s hotel business “sees tremendous opportunities in the state because of the tourism that’s going to come, both religious tourism as well as wildlife and other aspects that attract tourists”. “Air India has a detailed plan to connect every part of UP to the rest of India and potentially to important destinations of the world,” he added.
Further, he said Tata Group already has a significant presence in Uttar Pradesh through steel, automotive, retail, financial and power firms along with TCS. “Eighteen companies of Tata Group are deeply present (in UP),” he said, adding that 50,000 people are employed. “We are on a huge expansion across all our companies in the state… we are already having huge investments in Noida, both from a TCS point of view and also from Air India point of view,” he said without giving details. Chandrasekaran also said UP is “absolutely well placed” to become a “trillion-dollar economy when India will be USD 5 trillion and again become a USD 2 trillion economy by the time India reaches USD 10 trillion”. He highlighted sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing and tourism that have huge potential to contribute to the state’s growth.