Hyderabad: Seeking to remind his promise to the people during the election campaign that he would build a Singapore-like capital in AP, if voted to power, AP Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu said both he and the Singapore ministers and officials had arrived at a consensus that if architects and designers planed the capital city, it would be as per their individual experiences.
If the Singapore government, which has developed and redeveloped Singapore in multiple phases with ultra-modern facilities from just a fishermen’s village, takes up the mantle of building AP’s capital city, it can do wonders, as it has the experience of transforming Singapore to a world-class nation from scratch.
The Chief Minister said that the Singapore ministers and officials, whom he met, had agreed in-principle to prepare a master plan. But, they said that they needed to place it before their Cabinet.
“The Singapore government and its entrepreneurs are known for promising less and delivering more and I am confident it is going to happen even in case of the AP capital,” Mr Naidu said.
“After they disclose their Cabinet’s decision, we will draw an action plan,” Mr said on Sunday, sharing details of his three-day trip to Singapore.
He added that a joint working group of AP and Singapore governments’ ministers, officials and private company representatives had also been proposed to work out housing, transport, tourism, water, educational institutions, ports, aviation, skill development and various other sectoral development projects to be executed in AP under the G2G and PPP modes.
Praising Singapore’s expertise in developing itself on all fronts in a short span after its separation from Malaysia in 1963, Mr Naidu said, “Though Singapore’s population is just 50 lakh, whereas AP’s population is five crore, their income is 10 times higher than that of ours on every aspect as I had promised during polls,” he said. , he said that the AP and Singapore government were discussing various projects to be taken up under the G2G model and department to department mode, mainly to develop the ports in Andhra Pradesh and transform the state into a logistics hub.
He also said that he would be entering into PPP agreements with top-notch private companies in Singapore to construct world-class ports in AP.
Drawing parallels between Singapore and Andhra Pradesh, the chief minister said that there were several similarities. Like the truncated AP, Singapore was also forcibly separated from Malaysia in 1963.
In the initial days, Singapore was a fishermen’s village without any resources. Despite limited space, lack of water, Singapore developed rapidly in a short span earning recognition as one of the Four Asian Tigers.
“Though Singapore has limited resources, it has progressed on all fronts because of hard work, good planning, lack of corruption and efficient administration. Singapore’s population is just 50 lakh whereas AP’s population is 5 crore. But, their income is 10 times higher then that of ours,” he said.
Mr Naidu said he shared a close relationship with the government of Singapore. “They used to send me greetings and maintain relations with me even when I was in the Opposition.
This relationship is now helpful for us in availing the services of the Singapore government in developing infrastructure facilities in AP,” he said.
Showering praises on Singapore’s development, Mr Naidu said the population of Singapore is 50 lakh but the GDP was over $300 billion where as the population of AP was 5 crore and its GDP was only $80 billion US dollars.
Singapore did not have much land and water, where as AP has land, water and abundant natural and human resources, he pointed out.
“The capital city should be dynamic, generate employment, income, revenue and throw up a vibrant social life.
Singapore has all of these and AP’s capital too will have it,” Mr Naidu said and added that the Singapore government had even expanded an island and went for reclamation of sea land at several places.
“When I wanted to bring Formula 1 to AP, they (the opposition) stalled it. Singapore got Formula 1. The Formula One track is not different. The roads in Singapore have been developed in such a way that after Formula 1 is held on it, they are used as normal roads by motorists. The roads are multi-purpose in Singapore,” he said.
Mr Naidu appealed to the Telugu people that it was an opportunity of a lifetime for them to participate in building the capital city.
“In future when a world class capital city is in place, every Telugu person should look at it with satisfaction that he or she has contributed at least a brick in its development.
Please cooperate with the government and contribute at least a brick or it could Rs 10, Rs 100, Rs one lakh or over Rs 1 crore. Contribute as per your convenience,” he said.