Orissa poised for 9% economic growth during 11th plan: Bhandare

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Bhubaneswar, Feb 13 (UNI) Keeping in view the developmental imperatives, Orissa has targeted an annual growth rate of nine per cent and four per cent in the agriculture and its allied sectors respectively during the 11th plan period, Governor M C Bhandare said today.

Addressing legislators, on the opening day of the Budget session of the state Assembly here, Mr Bhandare said the plan allocation has accordingly been increased from Rs 19,000 crore during the 10th plan to Rs 32,225 crore during the 11th plan to achieve the target.

He said Orissa had already witnessed a higher average of annual economic growth of 7.2 per cent against the targeted growth rate of 6.2 per cent during the 10th plan period.

Agriculture being the mainstay of the rural economy in the state, the government, Mr Bhandare said, was contemplating to announce the new agricultural policy soon for an all round development in the sector.

The state government has signed 49 MoUs for setting up steel plants with a total investment of Rs 1,97,025 crore for production of about 74.66 million tonnes of steel. Out of these, 26 companies have already started partial production and achieved 3.32 MTPA steel, .45 MTPA sponge iron and .45 MTPA pig iron providing direct and indirect employment to 12,345 and 25,359 people respectively.

Mr Bhandare further said the government has taken a number of fiscal correction measures to improve the situation in the state during the last few years.

''This has resulted in a surplus revenue of Rs 481.19 crore in the 2005-06 fiscal,''he added.

However, the debt burden has been a recurring problem for the state government with the Debt GSDP Ratio of 44.87 per cent in 2006-07 as against the recommended level of 28 per cent by the 12th Finance Commission.

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