Kerala and Dubai formally launch Smart City Kochi project

Kerala yesterday logged on to the world IT map by joining hands with Dubai Technology and Media Free Zone Authority (TECOM) to set up SmartCity in the state’s commercial capital.

The foundation stone for the $ 350 million industry township for the knowledge-based industries was laid jointly by State Chief Minister V S Achutanandan and SmartCity Executive Director Fareed Abdulrahman near Infopark here in the afternoon.

TECOM executive chairman Ahmed Bin Byat, who was to unveil the foundation stone, could not make it owing to ‘reasons beyond his control’. His message, read out by Abdulrahman, said that the project would be able to tap Cochin’s tremendous potential for growth.

“We envisage SmartCity Cochin to be a significant hub of excellence for knowledge-based industries. It has some of the key factors required for knowledge-based growth. The state has a vast pool of talent and the government is committed to knowledge-based development,” he added.

Byat said that the Smart City would open several new opportunities and avenues of growth in this industry, particularly the IT and ITES sectors. It would play a key role in SmartCity’s own global plans.

He said that TECOM’s objective was to create a global network of self-sustained industry townships for the knowledge-based industry. “SmartCity Cochin will be a significant part in the network of knowledge-based industry townships we are seeking to develop across the world”.

Byat said that TECOM would be working closely with the Kerala government and the industry in the state to develop SmartCity into a rich and vibrant knowledge-based industry community. “We will be designing the project to create an inspiring, productive environment where knowledge workers can exchange ideas, share knowledge and explore partnerships.”

Speaking on the occasion, the Chief Minister said that the government would take immediate steps to solve the traffic problems plaguing the city by developing road and water transport networks.

He said that the project had encouraged many private investors to invest in the IT sector.


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