'Bangalore one of the largest bioscience clusters'

'Bangalore one of the largest bioscience clusters'

The country's technology hub, Bangalore, is today one of the largest bioscience clusters on the planet with about 10,000 bioscience researchers and professionals located here, a top Karnataka government official today said.

"The highest number of biotech startups anywhere in the country happen out of Bangalore and these are growing at the rate of 30 per cent year on year, something which is very exciting for the biotechnology industry and the biotechnology research world," Secretary IT, BT, S&T Government of Karnataka Srivatsa Krishna said.

Speaking at 'Bangalore India Bio 2014', inaugurated by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in the presence of Nobel laureate John Gurdon and World Food Prize laureate Prof Marc Van Montagu, he said, ".....partnering with the Association of Biotechnology Led Enterprises (ABLE)-we are proposing to the government of India to set up the first Biosynthetic technology institute in the country."

"This, when it comes up will build the next generation tolls and to build the structurised pathway for making sustainable products in this field," he added.

Calling Bangalore as biotech capital of India, Krishna said, "... we have about 400 biotechnology companies in India, ... of the 400, 70 per cent are located here in Bangalore."

"This makes us the unequivocal the unquestioned biotechnology capital of India," he added.

Stating that 10,000 bioscience researchers and professionals are located in this city, he said "this makes us one of the largest bioscience clusters not in India but in this planet...."

Announcing that Karnataka will be the first state in India to launch a bioscience and medical technology incubator, he said it would come up at Electronic city.

Siddaramaih said about 26 per cent of the biotech revenues of the country, particularly in terms of exports, are generated by the industry in Karnataka.

Stating that first biotech policy in the country was announced by Karnataka in 2001, he said, "The policy, to a large extent, has achieved the objectives. Keeping in view the changing needs of the sector, state government revised and announced 'Millennium Biotech Policy version 2' in December 2009."

"Since this policy would be completing five years, our government proposes to revisit the policy this year. Inputs of the Vision Group on Biotechnology would be taken for Version-3 of Biotech Policy," he added.

Pointing out that the project of developing a biotech park in Bangalore is taking shape, the Chief Minister said M/S Alexandria Real Estates, is developing the Alexandria Knowledge Park in Bangalore, Helix - the Biotech Park of Bangalore, which will be operational in about two years.

Sharing Biotech industry perspective, Biocon CMD and Chairperson-Karnataka vision group on Biotechnology, Kiran Mazumdar Shaw said "....in the next fifty years innovation is going come from the east, and this is where I think India needs to be focused on- investing in science and technology, and technology by biotechnology..."

"What makes it very special in Bangalore is the convergence of IT and Biotechnology ...," she added.

Stating that we have an enormous opportunity to shape the way for the future, Mazumdar Shaw said: "This is where Karnataka has got a greater and pivotal role to play- for India."

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