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Guwahati: Close to 200 companies in the security and defence sector participated in the first ever East Tech 2023 defence expo in the Northeast.
There were stalls displaying the latest in defence technology that Assam and rest of the region got a chance to see and experience. Among them were drones, security equipment, logistics solutions and high-tech gadgets that can be used by armed forces as well as paramilitary forces of the eastern command.
"East Tech 2023" the mega defence expo has drawn attention for its scale and magnitude, organized under the aegis of the Indian Army's Eastern Command.
Many companies at the expo today said on the sidelines of the event that they would like to invest in Assam given an opportunity.
Few of the companies told Business North East that they have a good presence in this region, as their companies have that specific equipment that caters as per the geographical requirement of North East.
“Assam is making developments in the business world as it rolls out out a red carpet of incentives and opportunities for investors, both mega and small-scale, in the defense sector,” stated state's commerce and industries minister Bimal Borah while speaking at the event today.
Under the Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, Assam is committed to boosting its industrial ecosystem through the Assam Industrial and Investment Policy Amendment 2023, said Borah. He said that, "special incentives had been introduced, particularly targeting mega investors with investments exceeding Rs. 100 crore."
Additionally, an emphasis has been placed on generating direct employment for more than 200 youths of Assam.
The state government has demonstrated its dedication to attracting investors through various means, including customized incentives for promoting Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) via credit guarantee linkages and supporting startups with venture capital assistance. This multi-pronged approach is part of Assam's strategy to create a thriving business environment said Borah.
Borah said that between May and September 2023, as many as 14 Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs) were signed, representing a total investment of Rs. 11,315 crore and the potential creation of 12,000 jobs.
"East Tech 2023" aims to introduce contemporary technologies and hardware solutions available from Indian manufacturers, promoting the "Make In India" and "Raksha Atma Nirbharta" initiatives. The event's main objective is to assist the Eastern Command in addressing operational challenges through indigenous technology adoption.
The two-day event at Guwahati's Maniram Dewan Trade Centre features numerous Indian manufacturers, MSMEs, DRDO, and DSPUs showcasing their cutting-edge weapons and equipment technology. It serves as a platform for startups and established players in the defense industry to exhibit their latest innovations, fostering growth and self-reliance in the sector.
Borah continued to say, the government has laid its focus on the defense sector of Assam, citing the state's strategic location and proximity to ASEAN countries.
Minister has urged the investors to explore opportunities in Assam's defense sector, highlighting the government's commitment to providing the necessary support and infrastructure.
Furthermore, "East Tech 2023" is expected to facilitate greater engagement between the Indian private sector, research and development organizations, and academia, including IITs. Minister Borah said that this mega defense expo underscores Assam's commitment to enhancing the ease of doing business and creating an environment conducive to defense manufacturing and innovation.
Borah reiterated the government's unwavering commitment to take Assam to unprecedented heights in the defense sector, and he extended his appreciation to forward-thinking entrepreneurs who have chosen Assam as their investment destination, emphasizing the conducive business environment nurtured by the state.
The East Tech 2023 has not only brought cutting-edge defense technology under one roof but also showcases Assam's growing significance in the Indian defence sector, promising a brighter future for investors, innovators, and the state's industrial landscape, Borah added.