Assam is located in the northeast of India. The state shares its borders with Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Tripura and West Bengal. The state shares international borders with Bangladesh and the Kingdom of Bhutan. Assam is India's gateway to Northeast India and acts as a vital link for trade with Southeast Asian countries. The state is known for its tea, petroleum resources, muga silk and biodiversity. It is also becoming an increasingly popular destination for wildlife tourism.
At current prices, the Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) of Assam was Rs 3.74 trillion (US$ 53.51 billion) in 2019-20. It is estimated to have reached Rs 2.48 trillion (US$ 40.1 billion) in 2017-18. The GSDP of the state grew at a CAGR (in Rs) of 12.75 per cent from 2011-12 to 2019-20.
The state is rich in water resources and has vast tracts of fertile land. Assam is also the third-largest producer of petroleum and natural gas in the country and has ample reserves of limestone. With its five national parks and 18 wildlife sanctuaries, the state is a biodiversity hotspot. Other potential areas of investment include power and energy, mineral-based industries, tourism and crude oil refining.
Assam has adopted numerous investor-friendly policies to attract investments and accelerate industrial development. Key areas of focus include the IT, tourism and power sector along with several other initiatives such as the North East Industrial and Investment Promotion Policy (NEIIPP) 2007 and the Industrial and Investment Policy 2014. Assam stands 22nd among Indian states in rankings based on ease of doing business and reforms implementation, according to a study by the World Bank and KPMG. The government has set a target to generate 6500 MW power in the state by 2030.
According to the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), cumulative FDI inflows in North-Eastern states during April 2000-June 2019 stood at US$ 122 million. Exports from the state stood at US$ 369.76 million during 2018-19.
- In February 2019, foundation of a 70 MW Solar Park at Japisajia village of Amguri in Sibsagar district was laid that has a production life of 25 years.
- Government of Assam has started the project preparatory activities for the World Bank funded Inland Water Project under the Inland Water Transport Department at Rs 975 crore (US$ 150.60) which will help realise the huge untapped potential in this sector.
- The 9.15-km long Bhupen Hazarika Bridge over the Brahmaputra river in Assam is India’s longest bridge and will reduce the travel time between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh from six hours to just one hour. As of April 2019, the state has 15,320 eligible habitations out of which 13,853 are cleared and 11,112 are further connected under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY).
- Budget 2019-20 states that over 22,000 beneficiaries have been provided relief under the Atal-Amrit Abhiyan health insurance scheme which has been allocated Rs 200 crore (US$ 28.62 million) for financial year 2019-20.
- UPA government’s flagship scheme provided free electricity connection to poor villagers
- Tea: During 2018-19^, production of tea in the state stood at 701.35 million kgs and reached 588.36 million kgs in 2019-20 (till October 19).
- Agriculture and Allies: An agrarian economy since time immemorial, agriculture is the major contributor to the state economy. It also provides livelihood to a significant proportion of the population of the state. The agro-climatic conditions support cultivation of a wide range of horticultural crops, including plantation crops and various fruits and vegetables, flowers, spices, medicinal and aromatic plants, nut crops and tuber crops. Pineapple, banana, cauliflower, Broccoli, rose, rice, papaya, sugarcane, turmeric, jute, potato and Bougainvillea are among high yielding varieties of horticulture crops in Assam. It also includes traditional fruits like Carambola, Leteku, Paniyal Thekera, Au tenga etc. Total production of horticulture crops in the state in 2018-19* stood at 7.18 million tonnes with 702.53 thousand hectares area under production.
- Sericulture: Assam enjoys global monopoly in terms of Muga silk (also known as golden silk) production. The state accounts for around 95 per cent of global Muga production. Moreover, Assam is the country’s major Eri silk producer (accounts for 65 per cent of the country’s Eri silk production).
- Under the State Budget 2019-20, Rs 8 crore (US$ 1.14 million) and Rs 0.95 crore (US$ 0.13 million) has been allocated for the construction of Handloom Model Village and for Sericulture model Village respectively.
- Tourism: In 2017, 6.07 million tourists arrived in the state of Assam.
Note: @ - Includes Fruits, Vegetables, Spices, Honey, Plantation, Aromatic and Flowers, * - As per 1st Advance Estimate, ** - Upto February 2019