Time to invest in Karnataka’s Tier 2, 3 cities: Minister

Bengaluru, Dec 18 (IANS) Industries must shed the obsession of only operating from Bengaluru and consider Karnataka’s Tier-2 and 3 cities, said state Industry Minister R.V. Deshpande on Friday.

“I am pitching for Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities. I don’t know why everybody wants to be in Bengaluru?” said Deshpande at a conference “Actualising Make in India to Make in Karnataka”, organised by Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham).

He cited the success of aviation Special Economic Zone (SEZ) Aequs located in Belgaum, a non-Tier-1 city, 505 km from Bengaluru.

“See, in Belgaum, an SEZ for aviation (Aequs) is doing extremely well, supplying components to Airbus and Boeing,” said Deshpande, urging industries to look at non-tier one cities like Belgaum, Dharwad, Hubli, Gulbarga, Kolar, Mysuru and others.

Allaying fears of industry sceptical of moving to these cities, he said all of them are well equipped with excellent educational institutions, favourable climate, rich human resources, skilled manpower, cheaper infrastructure and other resources.

Addressing power shortage in Karnataka, Deshpande said by July 2016, 2,300 MW of thermal power generation capacity will be added.

Lot of solar power companies are making enquiries to set up operations in Karnataka, he said.

Deshpande highlighted ‘Make in India’ kind of initiatives started in Karnataka long back, giving examples of Bosch setting up a plant in Bengaluru in 1953 itself and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) established in 1940 with Mysore’s Maharajas support.

The minister threw a challenge to industry chambers Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), Assocham and others to promote Karnataka and bring as much investment as possible, promising recognition and awards in return.

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