By Andy Sambidge
Much delayed SmartCity Kochi project aims to create about 90,000 jobs in Kerala
A concept master plan for SmartCity Kochi, a joint venture between Dubai's Tecom Investments and the Government of Kerala, has been approved, officials have announced.
The SmartCity Kochi IT park project is expected to create 90,000 jobs in Kerala and aims to attract the best of knowledge based industries across the globe to set up their operations in Kerala.
Jawad Suleiman, executive director of Project Development & Planning, SmartCity Dubai, said: “The overall SmartCity Kochi project is constantly progressing. With the approval of the Concept Master Plan we are moving towards achieving our vision of developing India’s largest IT Park with world class facilities in Kerala.
"SmartCity Kochi is a commitment towards the people, the state of Kerala and will set new benchmarks in creating and fostering an ecosystem for investment and growth.”
The project is now awaiting clearance from the Special Economic Zone Board of Approval for starting construction of buildings.
The concept master plan of SmartCity Kochi outlines facilities including education, health care, shopping boulevards and residential units.
Phase 1 construction will be completed between 18 to 24 months from the date of awarding the contract to the contractor, a statement said.
The deal with the State Government of Kerala has been dogged by delays but a lease agreement signed in March 2011 gave it new momentum.
For Tecom, the deal represents a big step in its international expansion strategy of creating successful prototypes of Dubai Internet City and Dubai Media City at various locations worldwide.