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Electronic city, IT Park will complement startups: CM

PANAJI: As a follow-up to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Start-up India, Stand-up India’ campaign, Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar on Monday launched Economic Development Corporation’s technology startups competition, with focus on supporting new entrepreneurs in the state, in turn, generating more jobs for the locals.

The top prize for the one-time competition – Chief Minister’s Award for Best Technology Startup from Goa – consists of a cash prize of Rs 10 lakh, while the first three winners would be given cash awards of up to Rs 10 lakh each, as seed capital. In addition, the top winner would be entitled for free incubation at the Centre for Incubation and Business Acceleration (CIBA), for a period of 12 months.

The Chief Minister also said that under the skill development initiative, an extensive study has been carried out about the industrial estates in the state, and their collective apprentice capacity hiked from the existing 950-1,000 to 2,700. “The 2 to 3 years apprenticeship period will also ensure good stipend for the apprentices,” he added, maintaining that the government will further ensure that the apprentices are later absorbed in their jobs.

Stating that the Electronic System Design and Manufacturing (ESDM)/ Electronic City proposed at Tuem in Pernem taluka as well as the Information Technology (IT) Park conceptualised at Chimbel in Tiswadi taluka will complement the ‘Start-up India, Stand-up India’ campaign, Parsekar said that the consultant appointed for the two ambitious projects will finalise the planning for the same by March 2016, including details about the plots, the startups, the incubation centres, and so on. “The land surveyor, on the other hand will visit the Tuem site for the ESDM/ Electronic City, later this week and finalise the land for water supply connections as well as sub-station of the electricity department,” he stated, pointing out that the access road has also been constructed at the site.

Speaking further, the Chief Minister said that the Investment Promotion Board, which has held 8 meetings since its inception, last year, has cleared altogether 62 investment proposals worth Rs 5,232 crore, which are expected to generate 11,415 jobs. “The Board will now meet on January 21, and decide about 60-odd more proposals pending before it,” he said, maintaining that the Board takes two aspects into consideration while clearing the proposals, namely their environment-friendliness and creation of jobs suiting the local youth.

The Chief Minister also said that the Request for Proposal (RFP) for the proposed Mopa Greenfield Airport has been recently issued and the bidder, who will give best offer to the government, would be announced in 90 days. “The successful bidder also needs to follow the condition as regards introducing necessary courses and providing training facility for local youth as per the skills required to work at the airport,” Parsekar said, “which, in turn, will guarantee their employment at the airport.” He further said that the Pernem-based Industrial Technical Institute (ITI) would be made available to the successful bidder to conduct the necessary courses, and if needed, more ITI centres around Goa would be opened up for the same.

Parsekar also informed that the EDC, under the Chief Minister’s Rojgar Yojana – renamed as Dr Verghese Kurien Rojgar Yojana – has created over 6,000 successful entrepreneurs by way of share capital assistance without any security or guarantee. “These entrepreneurs have not only generated jobs through their enterprises, but 87 per cent of them are regular payers of installments towards this financial assistance,” he noted, further informing that the officials of the EDC are now organising awareness programmes all over the state about this scheme, as also the concept of subsidy included in it, with the beneficiaries from rural talukas henceforth receiving 25 per cent subsidy on the financial assistance.

Panaji MLA and chairman of the EDC Sidharth Kunkalienkar, speaking on the occasion said that the technology startups competition would kick-start the startups movement in Goa. He also said that two startups centres have been set up in Goa.

Vice-chairman of EDC Santosh Kenkre provided information about the competition, stating that the contest would be limited to production facilities/ units/ operating offices functioning in Goa, in turn, generating jobs for locals. “The annual turnover of the participants of this contest should not exceed Rs 25 crore in any preceding financial year,” Kenkre added, pointing out that the participating production facilities/ units/ operating offices should not be in existence for more than five years.

Managing director of EDC Arvind Ghatkar and newly appointed consultant of the EDC Ryan Carvalho were also present on the occasion.

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