The State government would ensure atleast 80 percent employment opportunities in all the upcoming power, Industries and Tourism Projects in the State to the Himachali youth. This was stated by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur while presiding over the meeting regarding investment targets in tourism, MPP and Power and Industries here today.Chief Minister said that the State has immense power potential and if fully exploited it has capacity to transform the economy of the State. He said that the departments should work with specific targets to be achieved in stipulated period. He said that five hydro power projects with a total capacity of 594 MW would be completed within next one year on which work was on war footing, whereas eleven other projects with total capacity of 307 MW would also be completed within years, which were awarded during the last six months.Jai Ram Thakur said that the Government was also laying stress on optimum exploitation of non conventional energy. He said that HIMURJA would complete construction of 19 mini and small projects with total capacity of 34.20 MW capacity during the next one year.While reviewing the investment targets achieved in industries department, Chief Minister said that pollution free environment, industrial peace, skilled manpower and uninterrupted power supply makes Himachal Pradesh a favoured destination for investors. He said that in order to attract industrial investment in the State, electricity duty on existing industries has been reduced from 4 percent to 2 percent in small scale industries and from 10 percent to 7 percent in case of medium industries.It was informed in the meeting that target has been fixed to complete 27 industrial units with an investment of Rs 895.70 crore which would provide employment to about 2600 people.
In addition, target has been fixed to allot 350 industrial plots to the entrepreneurs in the State during the next one year and attract an investment of Rs 5000 crore and employment potential of 8000 people.Jai Ram Thakur said several man made and natural water bodies of the State could be developed as a major tourist attraction. He said that possibilities should be explored to start water sports such as boating and shikaras in Chamera water reservoir. Similarly, Pong Dam could prove a major attraction not only for birds lovers but also the reservoir could be developed a favourite destination for water sports enthusiasts, he added. He said that Pandoh Dam in Mandi district could also be developed from tourism point of view. Likewise, efforts would be made to develop other reservoirs such as Larji and Bhakra dam from tourism point of view, he added.Chief Minister said that there was immense potential of tourism in form of eco-tourism and adventure tourism. He said that rope ways were another sector which could be an added attraction for the tourists. He said that the Government would special stress on lesser known and unexplored tourist destinations.It was informed in the meeting that four rope ways would be allocated to the potential entrepreneurs in the State during the next one year, besides work would be completed on Dharmashala-Meclodgang rope within a year.Chief Secretary Vineet Chawdhry, Additional Chief Secretary cum Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Dr. Shrikant Baldi, Additional Chief Secretary Tourism Ram Subhag Singh, senior IPS Officer Sanjay Kundu, Principal Secretary Industries RD Dhiman, Secretary Finance Akshay Sood, Director Tourism Rakesh Kanwar, Special Secretary to the Chief Minister D.C. Rana were present on the occasion among others.