Soon, investors to the state could take an air taxi to visit the site of their proposed or ongoing project across 40 industrial investment destinations in Maharashtra.
The Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC), the nodal agency for industrial development in the state, has decided to develop 40 helipads across their lands to make it easy for investors to visit their project sites.
The helipads will first be developed in prime MIDC localities including at the automobile hub, Chakan near Pune, IT hub at Hinjewadi, the proposed special investment region at Dhulia, and ports and at steel hub Raigad.
“Many investors come from outside the country and there is a need for the state to do some handholding to make investment here easier and more competitive," said MIDC CEO Dr K Shivaji.
He said the helipads will enable senior level investors to chart a small aircraft or helicopter from Mumbai and reach anywhere in the state within an hour.
“A road trip for many of these high flying corporates is a waste of time. Flying is a better option and for us helipad development will not cost more than Rs 1 to 2 lakh each," he added.
MIDC will take up development of helipads on mandated open spaces in phases. Currently, MIDC has 275 industrial complexes and 32 IT parks across 58,889 hectares of land. It is also developing 21 Special Economic Zones in various modes.
However, the state is facing stiff competition from neighbouring states such as Gujarat. While the state officials have denied this, they admit that there is a need to aggressively sell industrial sites and ramp up existing infrastructure.
The industries department has recently gone digital to ensure this with an interactive online portal Maha E-Biz. The portal will aim to offer single window clearances to prospective investors and plot holders.
To sharpen their domain knowledge and business insight, the industries minister Rajendra Darda had also signed a partnership with global consultant Ernst and Young, this year.