ITIR likely to fetch $20 billion investment via PPP mode

ITIR likely to fetch $20 billion investment via PPP mode

 Karnataka government’s ambitious project to showcase Bengaluru technology prowess got another fillip with the government calling up for expression of interest (EoI) for the Information Technology Investment Region (ITIR), proposed to be developed near the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) at Devanahalli.

In an interaction with DH,  Karnataka IT, BT and Tourism Minister Priyank Kharge said the ITIR will be a public–private partnership (PPP) project which is expected to bring in $20 billion investment.

“There is a little bit slowdown in the IT industry and it is picking up now. We want to showcase the ITIR as the best investment destination and one of the largest technology hubs in the world, especially for next generation technologies,” he said.

Kharge pointed out that in the initial phase the government is planning to develop 2000 acres of land and the Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board has invited the EoI. “The land has been identified and the problem is in getting investment. Besides looking at country specific investment, the government is also expecting companies investments,” he said.

The minister also said the government is considering the plug and play model for  manufacturing companies at the ITIR. “Nothing stops us to experiment with this project as we are ready to go out of the box to take advantage of the brand Bengaluru,” he said.

Karnataka government was the first to come forward with a proposal on setting up ITIR. The Central government approved the state’s proposal in 2013. Around 30 villages have been identified in Devanahalli and Doddaballapur taluks for the project.
Commenting on the development,  Infosys Co-founder Kris Gopalakrishnan said the idea of ITIR is to create land parcel to add investment by assuring connectivity and other utilities.

“ITIR should have a competitive cost advantage. If the market rate is given the investment cannot be justified. Companies can also look at other option of going to the NCR, Hyderabad, Pune, Chennai,” he said.

According to sources familiar with the project, the farmers are ready to give the land at a time the demonetisation has hit the land sales in the state. Additional Chief Secretary for Commerce & Industry D V Prasad said, “The project was originally proposed by the IT and BT Department. Since they didn’t get enough funds they wanted industries department to block 2000 acres.”

“We already blocked the land by issuing the 25/8 notification. We decided to invite EoI as we unable to raise approximately Rs 2000 crore fund. We are looking at the response from the industries and build the infrastructure accordingly. It will be developed as a township,” said Prasad.

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