A write-up on Business Initiatives under the Kerala IT Policy
Kerala’s IT Policy has the vision to “plan, develop and market the state as the most preferred IT/ITES investment/business destination in India” Additionally it also visualises the utilisation of ICT for the effective, transparent and efficient delivery of services to the citizens seamlessly through and integrated e-governance framework and making the state of Kerala 100 percent e-literate and digital.
The Business Initiatives under the Kerala IT Policy spans 13 points which aim towards creating an encouraging business environment and strong liaisons across the board.
On creating focussed eco-systems:
In keeping with the vision, the policy focusses on creating a sustainable ecosystem. The central idea being to fuel sustained growth of ICT in the state. With thrust areas for the creation and improvement of civil infrastructure, connectivity among IT Hubs and ancillary facilities, the recent trends of IT firms to move towards Tier II and Tier III cities would be leveraged by providing appropriate incentives and concessions.
Taking all of this a step further, the Government proposes to ensure that IT Parks established in the State will be equipped with layouts and interiors that are green , eco-friendly and energy efficient. This is an attempt to provide world class, cost effective work space. Such measures would target small, mid-size and large Indian and multi-national IT/ITeS companies and encourage those to set up their operations within the afore mentioned IT Parks.
On attracting IT firms, investment in ICT and talent:
All of the above and more would be completed by an aggressive marketing approach including media campaigns, road shows, with specific focus given to trade development and branding. The marketing plan would cater to the international and national IT markets and publicise the location advantages of Kerala to prospective investors.
To make Kerala a preferable State to work in, the Government aims at making it a cosmopolitan place that would enable people from outside the State to work in it, thereby also ensuring return of local talent. It envisages removing bottlenecks related to infrastructure which may hamper the growth of IT industry.
Encouraging development of the supporting infrastructure and investment in PPP mode for bringing world-class schools and hospitals, the Government would be making a well rounded attempt to make the State attractive for those who choose to work in it.
In order to boost the growth and investment in ICT, the Government recognises the necessity to continue with the current financial incentive schemes offered to ICT companies while adding new ones. For instance the existing investment subsidy scheme would be continued.
In a rather well thought out step, the Government proposes to augment the business promotion efforts of IT SMEs. This would be by facilitating group business promotion trips to various countries and participation in International trade fairs.
Bringing micro IT firms to reality:
With the same, the Government wants to promote the growth of micro IT firms operating from homes on the crux that IT as a cottage industry can percolate down to remote villages and homes. In order to do so, the IT parks can guide the people in setting up small scale IT firms and handhold them. This would encourage social entrepreneurship.
The promotion of such micro IT industries will result in equitable development of the State, the policy envisages.
The policy observes that the rapid growth of IT industries have led to increased real-estate prices. This in turn has increased attrition and led to infrastructure choking. In turn, this has forced companies to look beyond the “leader locations” which are Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and Kozhikkode.
The proposed Rural IT hubs would address these issues, giving more visibility to smaller towns as investment destinations.
Creating liaisons to get better benefits and solutions:
Reaping the benefits from the Central Government’s plan to give a push to the hardware manufacturing sector creating attractive incentives etc, this policy plans to give a concomitant push to establish eco-friendly manufacturing units that’d churn out hi-tech products.
The Government would liaison closely with a host of industry associations such as NASSCOMM, MAIT, CII, GTECH and others ensuring a well coordinated and linked industry-Government interface on all matters of common concern.
The Business Initiatives listed under the Kerala IT Policy is sure to create a sustained growth pattern and match the vision of the policy on implementation. It is holistic, structured and pragmatic in all parts and caters to the needs of the State, the investors, the employers and the employed.