Maharashtra Scouting for Land around Pune to Lease to Auto Industry

We recently reported how Gujarat is proving to become the next auto hub with auto manufacturers Ford and Maruti mulling opening new manufacturing facilities in the area. Tamil Nadu has already established itself as an auto hub with many manufacturing companies operating a manufacturing plant in Chennai. Meanwhile, Haryana and Maharashtra, which have been the manufacturing home of many auto companies for decades now, are reportedly feeling the heat. Both the states are looking at ways to ensure that they keep attracting investment from auto companies.

According to a recent report, Maharashtra has always been claiming that they have a long list of companies, who are looking to start operations in the Pune belt. This has lead the MIDC agency of the government that is responsible for creating suitable infrastructure to begin scouting for more locations. The MIDCs regional office in Pune is in the middle of beginning their acquisition plans for a 2,700 hectare plot in Jejuri, another 600 ha plot in Baramati where the MIDC already has more than 750 ha plot, a 1500 ha plot in Ranjangaon where it has more than 1,000 ha plot along with a new plan to acquire a 500 ha plot in Indapur.

While the agency is looking to buy a plot in Ranjangaon, the large land that was given to Apollo Tyres for the company’s former partner, Michelin is still vacant. An official from MIDC was quoted as saying that the time constraint for them to begin construction is already over. They have however, not yet taken any action as these projects are quite big and it is not uncommon for delays to happen, and they have also requested to have more time. Another plot, which is lying vacant, is the Chakan plot given to Bajaj Auto for setting up their four wheeler facility; however it has not yet passed its stipulated time.

Many companies are reported to have had discussions with MIDC. These companies than acquire a plot from the agency on lease for 94 years under the condition of setting up in a stipulated time frame. Ford India is reported to have been holding discussions with many state governments to set up its second facility in India, including the Maharashtra government.

The company has reportedly requested for 400 acres land at Chakan, with the official from MIDC saying that wouldn’t be a problem when Ford makes its decision. Another company, Piaggio Vehicles is trying to get a mega project standing for their Baramati operations. The company already has a manufacturing facility, to which they will be adding the Vespa two wheeler facility.

A year back, the company had proclaimed their intention of making a 30mn Euros investment over a period of two years in 2010-11, for opening their 1.5 lakh production capacity plant to manufacture Vespa LX 125. The plant is reportedly scheduled to produce the first batch of scooters by 2012 end.

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