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Kerala signs MoU with IESA to woo investments from South East Asia   

Thursday, Jun 29, 2017,18:09 IST By anju A A A

Thiruvananthapuram | The Kerala government today signed an MoU with India Electronics & Semiconductor Association (IESA) to attract high-value investments from South-East Asia.

Besides investments, the core objective of the pact, expected to give a major fillip to the state’s IT and electronics manufacturing sectors, was also to offer greater access to lucrative markets in that region, known as Asia’s tech hub.

The Secretary to Government of Kerala for Electronics and Information Technology M Sivasankar and IESA president  M N Vidyashankar signed the MoU at the state Secretariat in the presence of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, a release said here.

Under the agreement, Kerala will partner with IESA – the country’s premier industry body for electronics, semiconductor and embedded systems – to set up a liaison agency in Taiwan to promote the investment potential of the state’s electronics system design and manufacturing (ESDM) sector, it said.

In addition to Taiwan, the other target countries are South Korea and the Philippines, the release said adding that the MoU is valid for five years.

The thrust segments for investment will be consumer, industrial and solar electronics as also medical products and automotive electronics devices, among other areas.

For mobilising investment, the agency would identify and facilitate tie-ups between leading firms in the target countries and home-grown entities within or outside the state’s Electronics Manufacturing Clusters (EMCs).

“This partnership is in line with the government’s development strategy, as outlined in this year’s Budget, to transform Kerala into a manufacturing hub for IT hardware,” Sivasankar said.

“By providing additional avenues for investment, collaboration and expansion, it will complement the government’s efforts to re-energise the state’s electronics manufacturing capacity and its vibrant startup ecosystem,” he said.

Kerala is the one of the associate partner states in this initiative, which will also leverage IESA’s network of connections and associations with prominent industry bodies to raise awareness about and better position the Kerala brand in the target countries.

The agency would conduct two annual road shows, one each in Taiwan and Kerala, and organise delegation visits, it said.

“Partnering with IESA will give Kerala a head-start in the target areas in terms of brand recognition and visibility,” Vidyashankar said.

“Potential collaborators in these countries will be predisposed to treat Kerala as a client they have known from the beginning, which will further diversify avenues of access to the local markets,” he said.

Given the region’s status as a top-tier tech hub, the potential investment opportunities and ease of doing business there will provide an important safety net to Kerala’s fast-growing IT ecosystem, he added.

IESA will also prepare a strategic roadmap outlining brand marketing and potential investment opportunities for the next five years.

It will also reserve a slot for Kerala at the IESA Vision Summit – its annual global leadership conclave for the ESDM industry, which brings together a powerful line-up of industry experts, thought leaders, policymakers, government officials, business and technology experts, venture capitalists and entrepreneurs to share their views on the industry’s trends, challenges and opportunities shaping it, the release added.