Underlining that the Nitish Kumar government deserves kudos for recording impressive development on several key indices, Rawat said that Bihar continued to grapple with many challenges with the state having more of poor population at 33 per cent as compared to the national average of 21.9 per cent.
Bihar had registered negligible growth in the urban road infrastructure even as there had been least improvement in infant moratality rate between 2001-10 requiring urgent improvement in healthcare response system starting from pregnancy to after delivery, he said.
The state's performance on attracting private investment had been poor in comparison to other BIMARU states as Bihar had received only Rs 429 crore investment out of Rs 30,000 crore coming to these four poor states with Rajasthan walking away with the lion's share at Rs 15, 355 crore and Madhya Pradesh with Rs 10,598 crore, he said.
Stating that the industrial development was necessary to propel economic growth, Rawat said that the Assocham had suggested to the state government to improve industrial scenario by offering sops, tax rebates, easing of land acquisition process and related incentives to woo the private investors on a large scale.
The Assocham official identified food processing, agriculture and consumer items as key areas for private investment, but rued that Bihar lacked essential ingredients like raw materials, electricity and land for development of heavy industries.
Rawat advised the state government to create a land bank to woo the private investors for setting up food processing and agro-based industries.
He said that the compilation of data by the Assocham researchers focussed on economic developement of the BIMARU states with a view of find out the status of the four states on various parameters as these states represented 37 per cent population of the country, but shared only 20 per cent of the GDP.