Visakhapatnam, Sep 16 (UNI) Andhra Pradesh will emerge as a major player in the power sector, according to Union Power Minister Sushilkumar Shinde.
After laying the foundation stone for 1,000 MW Simhadri Super Thermal Power Projects (Stage II) at Paravada Mandal near here today, he said the state has made rapid progress in the power sector and has bagged the first position in the country for the last two years.
The power project was being taken up at an estimated cost of Rs 5,038 crore and the first 500 MW unit of the project was scheduled to commence by 2010 and another unit of the same capacity by 2011.
Mr Shinde lauded Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy for his achievements in minor and major irrigation projects, apart from providing power to the farmers. The state could also set up Naptha-based power projects, he added.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Reddy said Visakhapatnam was developing at a faster pace after Hyderabad.
The Chief Minister said IT majors and other industries were making forays into the city and the state government was also developing SEZs to bring in more minor and major industries to the city. Thousand crore rupees were being invested for the generation of employment and welfare of the youth in the state, he added.
Mr T Subbarami Reddy, Union Minister for State for Mines, Shabbir Ali, AP State Minister for Power, K Ramakrishan, Minister for Commercial Taxes, were among others, who participated in the function.