During the inauguration of the first-ever 'Infinity Centre' in Dubai, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan announced that Kerala's start-ups are expected to create 20,000 job opportunities in the current financial year. This event marked the beginning of a series of launch pads developed in collaboration with the Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM). In this article, we will explore the details of the launch, the Infinity Centre's objectives, the support from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Kerala's initiatives to boost its IT sector.
Launching Infinity Centre: Strengthening Kerala's Start-up Ecosystem
The Chief Minister mentioned that additional Infinity Centres would be established in the United States, Australia, and Europe in the first phase. These centres, envisioned as comprehensive platforms, aim to enhance the state's ecosystem for budding companies. The launch event in Dubai witnessed the signing of a partnership agreement between the Infinity Centre and 'Startup Middle East,' represented by its founder, Sibi Sudhakaran, and KSUM's CEO, Anoop Ambika.
Objectives of Infinity Centre: Encouraging NRIs' Entrepreneurship Journey
The Infinity Centre aspires to be a one-stop destination for non-resident Indians (NRIs) looking to embark on their entrepreneurial journey. It offers various collaborative opportunities with Kerala-based start-ups and KSUM. Functioning as a global desk, these centres enable the NRI community in select countries to engage, co-create, and establish businesses, either in their resident country or India.
Support from the UAE: Strengthening Kerala's Ecosystem
Chief Minister Vijayan expressed his gratitude for the significant support provided by the UAE in connecting Kerala with other economies through the Infinity Centre. He emphasized that Kerala's accomplishments in the start-up sector on the international stage could foster cooperation from NRIs and further fortify the state's ecosystem. The launch pads at Infinity Centres facilitate start-ups in attracting foreign investments and expanding their domains.
Shifting Attitudes: From Job-Seekers to Job-Givers
Appreciating the thriving start-up culture in Kerala, the Chief Minister noted the transformation in the attitude of the state's youth, shifting from being job-seekers to job-givers. He highlighted that this change in mindset has contributed to strengthening the ecosystem for emerging firms. Additionally, he mentioned that the government's IT Department is actively exploring ways to leverage this shift and harness the potential of the new generation.
Betting Big on the IT Sector: Establishing IT Corridors
The Chief Minister outlined Kerala's efforts to revitalize its IT sector. The government is currently in the process of establishing IT corridors in strategic regions such as Thiruvananthapuram-Kollam in the south, Alappuzha-Ernakulam and Ernakulam-Koratty in the central region, and Kozhikode-Kannur in the north. Land acquisition is underway for these projects. Furthermore, apart from IT, the government aims to attract start-ups in sectors like agriculture.
Room for Growth: Increasing the Number of Start-ups
Chief Secretary VP Joy emphasized the vital role of start-ups in bolstering Kerala's industry and economy. The government's objective is to elevate the number of start-ups from the current 4,400 to 15,000 within the next three years. This ambitious goal aligns with the proposal for Infinity Centres, which was conceived due to Kerala's large NRI population of 32 million, the highest in India, and their substantial contribution of approximately $78 billion in remittances to the Indian economy.
The launch of the Infinity Centre in Dubai signifies Kerala's commitment to nurturing its start-up ecosystem and attracting investments from the NRI community. Through a network of Infinity Centres and strategic initiatives like establishing IT corridors, Kerala aims to foster entrepreneurship, create employment opportunities, and diversify its economy. With a focus on sectors such as IT and agriculture, Kerala aspires to position itself as a hub for innovative and sustainable start-ups in the global arena.