kolkata, 23 December, 2008: The Left Front government seems to have focussed on Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) for carrying out the industrialisation plan in the state. After Tata Motors pulled out of the state and several major industrial projects — Indonesia’s Salim group and Jindal’s steel plant — were put on hold, Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee is banking on SMEs.
This year, the theme of the Industrial India Trade Fair (IITF) has accordingly been kept: “Resurgent Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises”. “The trade fair is to promote the SME sector of the state since this sector is thriving here. It can promote industrialisation in the state as a whole and promote export-import business abroad as well,” said Bhattacharjee while speaking at the inauguration of the 22nd Industrial India Trade Fair (IITF) organised jointly by the Bharat National Chamber of Commerce and Industries (BNCCI) and India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO).
Bhattacharjee also said the global downturn is a severe crisis which has not only affected the financial sector but also the industrial sector. “We are facing a serious economic crisis worldwide and nobody knows when it will get over. Even though the Prime Minister has taken several measures to prevent the economic crisis from affecting the country, at present, business houses and stakeholders should come forward and join hands to overcome these difficult times,” added Bhattacharjee.
He said that he has also been discussing measures to face the slowdown with Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen. “At a time when the world is affected by the global recession, West Bengal is not an exception,” Bhattacharjee said.
This time the trade fair has been organised under the shadow of the Mumbai terror attack and global recession. The fair has already seen a reduction in the number of stalls. While there were 800 exhibitors last year, this year the number stood at 700.