of Jammu Kashmir
Jammu and Kashmir's economy is mostly dependent on farming,
animal husbandry and tourism. The Kashmir valley is known for its
sericulture, cold water fisheries as well as agricultural produce
like apples, pears and many temperate fruits as well as nuts. Wood
from Kashmir is used to make high-quality cricket bats, popularly
known as Kashmir Willow. Kashmiri saffron is also very famous and
brings the state a handsome amount of foreign exchange. Every year,
thousands of Hindu pilgrims visit holy shrines of Vaishno Devi and
Amarnath which has had significant impact on the state's economy.
Though small, the manufacturing and services sector is growing
rapidly, especially in the Jammu division. In recent years, several
consumer goods companies have opened manufacturing units in the
region. The union and state government have planned several
industrial parks and special economic zones in Jammu and Kashmir.
However, industrial development in the state faces several major
constraints including extreme mountainous landscape and power
shortage. In an attempt to improve the infrastructure in the state,
the Indian government has commenced work on the ambitious Kashmir
Railway project. The Jammu & Kashmir Bank, which is listed as a S&P
CNX 500 conglomerate, is based in the state. It reported a gross
income of INR 18,394 million for 2005. Before insurgency intensified
in 1989, tourism formed an important part of the Kashmiri economy.
The tourism economy in the Kashmir valley was worst hit. However,
the holy shrines of Jammu and the Buddhist monasteries of Ladakh
continue to remain popular pilgrimage and tourism destinations.
Tourism in the Kashmir valley has rebounded somewhat in recent
years, with Gulmarg emerging as one of the most popular ski resort
destinations in India. Gulmarg is also home to the world's highest
green golf course.