Kerala Budget: Less impressive than expected for state’s commercial capital Ernakulam

One of the major allotments of the city was Rs 10 crore earmarked for innovation zone for startups which will come up at the Startup Complex.

Published: 01st February 2019 03:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st February 2019 05:01 AM   |  A+A-

Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac | Facebook

By Express News Service

KOCHI: The state government’s budget for the fiscal year 2019-20 presented on Thursday by Finance Minister Thomas Isaac has evoked a mixed response in Ernakulam, especially in Kochi (the commercial capital of Kerala), as it was not allotted any major proposals.

The major announcement this year is the allocation for the townships which will be set up by the Greater Cochin Development Authority.

Some proposals like the overall allocations made for the IT parks, the Kochi-Coimbatore commercial corridor (mentioned in the previous budgets), the allocations made for coastal areas, including welfare schemes for fishermen, and fund allotment for startups are the promising side of the coin.

Meanwhile, some of the key requirements of the city like the development of byroads ahead of the proposed Kochi Metro expansion to Kakkanad, Thammanam-Pulleppady Road development and the junction development projects were excluded from the allocations.   

One of the major allotments of the city was Rs 10 crore earmarked for innovation zone for startups which will come up at the Startup Complex.

“With the introduction of an integrated Startup Complex in Ernakulam, the startup system in Kerala has been transformed into the biggest startup ecosystem in India. Here, startups are working together in different fields such as cancer diagnosis, charitable works, robotics, augmented reality, space technology and artificial intelligence,” said Finance Minister Thomas Isaac in his budget speech.

The budget also mentioned an additional tax complex at Ernakulam. Except for the Maritime Museum, the Muziris Project will be completed in 2020-21, according to the annual budget. A seminar including foreign countries interested to be partners in the Spices Route will be conducted in Kochi during the month of June.

An amount of Rs 84 crore will be provided to Technopark, Technocity, Technopark (Kollam) and Infopark (Kochi, Thrissur and Cherthala). An amount of Rs 116 crore has been earmarked for KSIDC to implement various projects, including a Hardware Park in Kochi. A one-time grant of Rs 25 lakh has been allotted to Kochi Lokadharmi Permanent Drama Theatre. A prominent news media company ‘Thejas’, a Singapore-based company named ‘Unity’ dealing in augmented reality, and ‘Altair’, a computer-aided engineering firm are also coming to Kochi.

Highlights:

  • GCDA Townships at Angamaly, Aluva and Perumbavoor.

  • Rs 10 crore for Innovation zone at Startup Complex.

  • An additional Tax Complex at Ernakulam.

  • A seminar of various stakeholders of Spices Route of Muziris Project to be held in June at Kochi.

  • General fund allocation for KSIDC for various projects, including a Hardware Park in Kochi.

  • A news media company, augmented reality company and engineering company to be set up at Kochi by foreign investors.

  • One-time grant of Rs 25 lakh has been allotted to Kochi Lokadharmi Permanent Drama Theatre.

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