Closed Nokia plant could open up doors to foreign investors and also bring in Jaya as an ally
GN Bureau | February 19, 2015
Finance minister Arun Jaitley can achieve twin objectives of getting an ally in Parliament and send signals to foreign investors about India’s tax regime by accepting a suggestion to revive Nokia plant in Tamil Nadu.
It is learnt that the Department of Electronics and IT (DeitY) has sent a proposals and suggested that it is ‘highly desirable’ that the mobile handset manufacturing activity at the Nokia plant at Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu be revived.
Jaitley had recently met former chief minister and AIADMK leader J Jayalalithaaa in Chennai and her party’s support is crucial in Rajya Sabha. Revival of the Nokia factory, which had given direct employment to nearly 8000 people, may boost TN’s sentiments. It will also lift the Modi government pitching for Make in India.
Nokia had suspended mobile handset production at the plant in November last. The company had tax troubles and other legal issues. Nokia began its operations in 2006. It was Nokia's largest plant in the world. Due to tax issues the factory remained out of agreement of sale with Microsoft.
According to the DeitY, the revival plan would send "positive signals to the domestic and global industry". It remains to be seen whether Jaitley will take this proposal to the logical conclusion and provide some kind of incentives in his budget this month.
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