The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), on February 1, said that the northeastern region is set to gain substantially from the Budget 2023-24 presented in the Parliament by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

CII North East Council Chairman Pradeep Bagla said that in the agriculture sector, by making available quality planting materials especially for millets, agri accelerator fund to support agri start-ups, young entrepreneurs with innovative solutions will benefit and encourage aspiring start-ups, entrepreneurs and farmers in the northeast.

CII North East Council immediate past (former) chairman Abhijit Barooah, welcoming the Budget, said the announcement of setting up of 157 new nursing colleges in co-locations with 157 medical colleges launched since 2014 will also enable India to reap demographic dividends.

Indian nurses, especially from the northeastern states, are in demand across the world, and the region will benefit with identification of a few such colleges in the region, he told the media.

Barooah said that the upgradation of Self Help Groups (SHGs) in terms of support in procurement of raw materials and skilling will provide strong dividends to the northeast economy.

He said that the energy sector overall has generated major focus and northeast with four oil refineries is expected to gain in view of the allocations of Rs 19,700 crore to the National Hydrogen Mission with the focus of enhancing hydrogen production capacity of 5 metric million tonnes by 2030 and the net zero and green commitments of the country.

The government announcement on the promotion of tourism in mission mode in 2023 will help the northeast.

Additionally, the announcement for development of destinations in totality would help the region by introducing newer destinations in the northeast tourism map, the CII North East Council leader said.

Barooah said that with substantial numbers of Eklavaya Model Residential Schools in the region the proposed enhancement in the number of teachers and support staff will improve the quality of education in the far-flung regions of the northeast.

With major strengths in the handloom and handicraft sector, the announcements on supporting artisans both in terms of capacity building and market linkages will empower this transformative and mass-driven sector in the northeast.

The CII North East Council in a statement said that the increased credit target of Rs 20 lakh crore for the agriculture sector with focus on animal husbandry, dairying and fisheries will fuel growth and enhance farmers’ incomes.

Further, the support and focus accorded to natural farming will boost the organic outlook of the northeastern states, it said.

The National Data Governance Policy for startups is a great initiative in order to provide access to anonymous data and the setting up three AI CoEs in partnership with the private sector in India will boost AI start-ups in the country and the northeastern region.