Mumbai, August 4 - Maharashtra took centre stage in the pursuit of sustainable economic growth as PHDCCI hosted its highly anticipated Maharashtra Green Infrastructure Conclave 2023. Themed "Maharashtra's Green Yatra to Become $1 Trillion SGDP," this landmark event, which took place at the Trident Hotel in Nariman Point, placed a spotlight on Green Initiatives in Industry & Infrastructure, paving the way for impactful discussions on sustainable development and growth opportunities in the state.
The conclave boasted an impressive lineup of distinguished speakers and panelists from diverse sectors, including Mr. K. V. Kamath, Chairman of National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development (NaBFID), Mr. Sudhir Hoshing, Chair, PHDCCI Infrastructure Development Ports, Shipping, Roads and Waterways Committee, as well as Mr. Himanshu Agarwal, Co-Chair, PHDCCI Infrastructure Development, Ports, Shipping, Roads and Waterways Committee.
“In any planning process, two critical factors come into play: aspiration and ability. It is essential to assess Maharashtra's ambition of achieving a $1 trillion economy by examining the recent developments in India's economic landscape and the momentum gained. We must question whether the target of one trillion is the right goal and how long it will take to achieve it. While aiming high is commendable, we should also consider reaching for higher milestones. However, we must be realistic and assess whether we have the capability to meet such aspirations. Some years ago, reaching half a trillion seemed unattainable, but now, given our current trajectory, reaching five trillion in a specific timeframe becomes a possibility,” said Mr. K. V. Kamath, Chairman of National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development (NaBFID).
He added: “The cleanup of balance sheets for both banks and corporate India in the last 2-3 years has been unprecedented, something I have not seen in the past 50 years of my career. Corporate India is willing to borrow, and banks are willing to lend. Given the optimism arising from clean balance sheets, the next consideration is setting growth targets. Maharashtra's growth rate of 9 percent indicates a doubling in about eight years, which suggests reaching a trillion within 7-8 years. This growth trajectory aligns with the focus on rail connectivity, green power, and urban rejuvenation, which presents a significant opportunity for transformation. The rejuvenation of our cities, including redevelopment, improved infrastructure, roads, housing colonies, and beautification, are crucial building blocks in driving the growth momentum. These endeavours contribute to GDP acceleration and create ample investment opportunities. Maharashtra has the ability, capability, and opportunity to pave the way for a promising future.”
“As we gather here today, we are witnessing unprecedented changes in the world. The need for innovative solutions has never been more urgent, and green infrastructure emerges as a beacon of hope. It envisions cities as vibrant ecosystems with clean air, water, and the well-being of our communities at the core. The choices we make now in terms of infrastructure will echo for generations to come, so this conference serves as a platform for action, not just knowledge dissemination,” said Mr. Sudhir Hoshing, Chair, PHDCCI Infrastructure Development Ports, Shipping, Roads and Waterways Committee.
The event also witnessed the unveiling of the PHDCCI – Cushman & Wakefield Knowledge Report, offering valuable insights into Maharashtra's green initiatives. As Maharashtra charts its path towards a remarkable $1 trillion SGDP, this conclave serves as an essential platform to drive the state's ambitious vision through sustainable and eco-conscious practices.
The report extensively examines Maharashtra's green initiatives and highlights the state's proactive efforts to promote clean energy, ensuring affordability, reliability, sustainability, and modernisation. According to the Economic Survey of Maharashtra, the installed capacity of renewable energy in the state saw a significant 9 percent increase in 2022-23 compared to the previous financial year. As a result, Maharashtra now ranks fifth in the country with a total capacity of 11,400 MW, which includes an impressive 3,352 MW of solar energy. Notably, during the World Economic Forum's 53rd annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, Maharashtra signed 19 Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) across diverse sectors such as hi-tech and infrastructure, energy, IT/fintech/data centers, steel manufacturing, agro, and food processing. These MoUs have the potential to attract investments worth INR 1.37 trillion and create over one lakh employment opportunities. Notably, a significant portion of these investments, amounting to INR 460 billion, were allocated to the renewable energy and electric vehicle sectors, further reinforcing Maharashtra's commitment to a sustainable and green future.
Mr. Manick Wadhwa, Director, SKI Capital Services Ltd., said: "Today's conference theme is particularly pertinent, especially in the current regulatory environment where the government is strongly advocating for sustainability and green financing. The focus on financing for Green Infrastructure in Maharashtra aligns well with the growing importance of the bond market and financial services in the state. It is vital to allocate due attention to investments in this category.” He added: “Collaborating on sustainable development is of utmost importance for both governments and the private sector. Bringing together various stakeholders, including investors, issuers, and advisors, to discuss the significance of green financing and climate change is essential. By addressing the challenges and finding solutions collectively, we can effectively move forward in this crucial endeavour."
“The banking and financial sector plays a pivotal role in driving growth and development. Capital induction into the economy is essential for progress, and banks and financial services are instrumental in providing the necessary financing. This, in turn, fosters economic prosperity. In addition to the banking sector, India's heavy reliance on energy imports, particularly crude oil, has been a key aspect of our economy. However, shifting towards green infrastructure, such as producing green hydrogen, solar power, and wind energy, can reduce our dependence on crude oil imports. As a result, India can transform into a net exporting economy, positively impacting the current account deficit and strengthening the rupee. This transformation will also attract investments into India, aligning with our goal of achieving a 5 trillion dollar economy,” said Mr. Abhishek Bansal, Founder Chairman, ABANS group.
The conclave also featured three engaging panel discussions covering topics such as Sustainable Construction, Green Infrastructure Financing, and Harnessing Growth through SEZs.