'We have so far called for Rs 20,000 crore worth of tenders,' says Chandrababu Naidu
Andhra Pradesh chief minister Nara Chandrababu Naidu spoke to Business Today on the challenges before the state on building the new capital, mobilizing funds and raising revenue at a time when there are no visible options available.
Andhra Pradesh chief minister Nara Chandrababu Naidu spoke to Business Today on the challenges before the state on building the new capital, mobilizing funds and raising revenue at a time when there are no visible options available. Excerpts:
To fructify your plans to build Amaravati as a happy city, you will need great deal of resources, how do you propose to mobilize the huge funds, over a lakh crore, that you apparently need to build the new capital city of Amaravati?
There is inherent strength here. With or without the support of the Centre, we have to do. We will have to tap private investment. People gave me around Rs 50,000 crore worth of land and if you see the layout, the private institutions, roads and infrastructure, it has been possible with the unique way in which land pooling has happened here.
How much have you spent till date on the temporary capital?
So far, we have so far called Rs 20,000 crore worth of tenders.
While you are talking of building a happy city, you are currently unhappy with the central government. Right?
What I am saying is that I am unhappy and at the same time, I have to move forward in life.
How do you want to improve the state revenues with no new options seemingly available given that the many industries that have come will not generate revenue since many enjoy long periods of tax holidays? But then revenue expenditure and debt is increasing.
It is all about economic activity. Somebody has to produce and somebody has to consume. How to produce, it would be either from agriculture, industries or services. My growth rate is 10.4 per cent average over the last four years.
But then, that is largely from agriculture - dairy and fisheries?
Today, the low hanging fruit is agriculture and now industries and services are growing and I am confident, it will happen.
But then, it will take 10 or 20 years?
It is a continous struggle. You are investing money, you have to get good returns.
Lastly, on fiscal management. The debt is rising, the deficit is more than the FRBM norms and then there are pending bills that need to be cleared and money paid. How do you plan to reduce expenditure?
We have to stimulate the economy. In the initial stage because of bifurcation, I will have some problems but then, ultimately, I am managing better than other states, which are all well established. You can see go through that.