Monday, May 14, 2007

SmartCity Kochi receives a go-ahead

The Smart City Business Park in Kochi has finally received the green signal yesterday, after a series of discussions for three years between the Kerala Government and Dubai Internet City.

The Dh.1.28billion ($350 million) worth SmartCity, basically a joint-venture between Sama Dubai and Tecom Investments, is estimated to occupy a million square meters of land, and is the center for knowledge industry companies in Kochi.

Last month an agreement was signed with the Government of Malta, which led to the establishment of SmartCity Malta, a business township, expected to come up in Ricasoli, Malta.

SmartCity Kochi, developed on the basis of other successful models such as the Dubai Media City and the Dubai Internet City, is targeted towards media and the IT firms, and is expected to be one among the largest business parks in India.

The Executive Chairman of Tecom Investments, Ahmad bin Byat, has stated that SmartCity Kochi would be the ideal place for the best companies in India and across the world to enter into partnerships, work together and bring up new ideas. However, the special focus would be on the sector of IT-enabled services, which is already a big boom in India.

The Kerala Chief Minister, VS Achuthanandan, mentioned that the project has arrived at a time when Kerala is at the verge of making an entry into a new phase of economic development which is knowledge-based. He added that SmartCity Kochi will be among the major players in tapping the enormous potential in Kerala for development of the media and IT.

It is expected that SmartCity Kochi will now drive in new opportunities for employment in areas of hospitality, administration, construction, consultancy, retail and logistics, tourism and construction, apart from the knowledge-based industries.

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