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Ecological balance necessary for sustainable development, tourism: Dr Saraswat

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By Our Staff Reporter

Dehradun, 4 Mar: Ecological balance for sustainable development and sustainable tourism will be the high priority in Uttarakhand, said Dr VK Saraswat, Chairman, Himalayan State Regional Council, and Member, NITI Aayog, Government of India, while addressing the gathering as the Chief Guest at the Plenary Session of the CII Uttarakhand Business Summit, here, today.
The theme of the Session was “Navigating Businesses through Challenging Times”. Dr Saraswat shared that Uttarakhand has immense potential in tourism and suggested that, for long-term tourism prospects, other forms of tourism like adventure, trekking, mountain climbing, eco-tourism that are gaining popularity, ought to be strengthened. The MSME sector needed to develop food processing industries to synergise growth of Uttarakhand, which would give immense benefits to employment, especially in the rural areas.
Nikhil Sawhney, Chairman, CII Northern Region & Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Triveni Turbine Limited, referred to the recent disaster in Chamoli District and urged the NITI Aayog to consider analysing the topography of the state and look at installing advance early warning systems to forecast events in all hill districts for disaster risk reduction. He mentioned that development in Uttarakhand was important, but it needed to be balanced with ecology, and suggested carrying out an Environmental Accounting of the state to enable further development with minimal environmental impact.
Shreekant Somany, Chairman & Managing Director, Somany Ceramics Ltd., shared that the pandemic situation had led to a substantial movement of the companies to the other developing and less developed countries, which had triggered a new wave of industrialisation. Consequently, the expansion of the manufacturing hub linked with global supply chains would increase not only productivity but also create large-scale employment. The pandemic had also provided an opportunity to follow an export driven model, where there were several capabilities already in place and several needed to be built. India is endowed with a rich pool of unskilled labour and a highly robust service sector but the lack of skilled labour, world class infrastructure and other necessary tools are the areas where India needs to improve. He further apprised that to boost MSME exports, CII has recently signed an MoU with Amazon. The partnership envisions enabling MSMEs in enhancing their potential to export and leverage e-commerce to further boost domestic trade.
Vipul Dawar, Vice Chairman, CII Uttarakhand State Council, while delivering his opening remarks shared that businesses especially from the MSME sector in India are passing through challenging times due to a host of factors that include technological disruptions, protectionist policies adopted by countries that have been importing goods from India, increasing competition globally and the higher than international cost of capital. It is extremely important for businesses to adjust and to sail through challenging times and come out stronger eventually. He opined that businesses need to focus on marketing shifts, keeping track of competition, have niche products/services at the right time and right price, analyse data to keep a complete watch on the economy and change business strategies accordingly.
The session was attended by over 100 delegates from Industry, Institutions, Government, Academia, NGOs & media over virtual mode.