Last Updated: November 09, 2015
Latest update: August, 2015
Last Updated: August, 2015
WEST BENGAL State Report | March, 2015
West Bengal is situated in eastern India and shares its borders with Jharkhand, Bihar, Odisha, Sikkim and Assam. The state also shares international borders with Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal. The Bay of Bengal is in the south of the state.
West Bengal is India's sixth largest economy, and recorded a gross state domestic product (GSDP) of US$ 132.86 billion in 2014-15. The state's GSDP expanded at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.06 per cent from 2004-05 to 2014-15. Agriculture is the chief occupation in the state and contributed 18.8 per cent to the GSDP in 2014-15. West Bengal is the largest producer of rice in India. Rice production for the state totalled 15.4 million tonnes in FY 15. West Bengal is also the largest fish producing state in India
West Bengal is the second largest tea-producing state in India. During 2014-15, it produced 329.3 million kg of tea, accounting for 27.8 per cent of India's total tea production and is home to the globally acclaimed Darjeeling tea variety. Kolkata is the prime centre for India's jute industry. During 2014-15, West Bengal accounted for 79.6 per cent of India's total jute production. West Bengal is also a leading exporter of leather and has about 500 tanneries accounting for 55 per cent of India’s leather goods exports. About 22-25 per cent of India’s tanning activity is undertaken in Kolkata.
Its location advantage makes the state a traditional market for eastern India, the Northeast, Nepal and Bhutan. It is also a strategic entry point for markets in Southeast Asia. The cost of operating a business is lower in Kolkata than in other metropolitan cities. During FY 2000-15, the state attracted total foreign direct investment (FDI) of US$ 2.9 billion.
West Bengal has abundant natural resources of minerals and suitable agro-climatic conditions for agriculture, horticulture and fisheries. It is in vicinity to mineral rich states like Jharkhand, Bihar and Odisha. It offers excellent connectivity to the rest of India in terms of railways, roadways, ports and airports.
West Bengal has also made a beginning in information technology (IT) sector. By 2015-16, eight IT parks are expected to start operating in the state. In addition, seven new IT parks are expected to start in the state over the next five years.