Karnataka on Sunday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Israel–based ISMC Analog Fab Pvt. Ltd. for setting up semiconductor fab plant at a cost of ₹22,900 crore ($3 billion) in the State over the next seven years.
One among the biggest proposals in the recent times, the $3 billion investment will have the potential to generate direct employment to 1,500 persons.
The MoU was signed by Additional Chief Secretary, IT/ BT, E.V. Ramana Reddy for Karnataka and Director of ISMC Ajay Jalan in the presence of Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai. As per the MoU, Karnataka would facilitate ISMC Analog to obtain necessary permissions, registrations, approvals, clearance and incentives among others from departments concerned as per the prevailing rules and policies.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Bommai said that the major MoU has been signed when many other States are competing to draw investments in semiconductor fab sector. The MoU has provided for technology and cultural exchange between Israel and India, he added.
The Chief Minister pointed out that Karnataka was the first state to come up with a semiconductor policy in 2008-2009. “However, ecosystem was not conducive. It also could happen despite the policy because there was an absence of an able leadership at the centre and no action plan.” He also said that the current situation where China’s policy on semiconductor had turned the heat was also responsible.
Mr. Bommai said that Karnataka government understands that it is not just the concessions or incentives, it is the conducive ecosystem that is needed to draw the investors. He said: “This is going to be a successful venture and bigger the venture means bigger challenges. But do not worry about the challenges and those challenges can be turned into opportunities. We will do it (project) in a bigger scale and I expect the research and development also to take place in Karnataka.”
Mr. Bommai said that he had already intimated the Centre about the developments, and that the Centre was also looking at one or two more companies in different sector of semiconductor to invest in India.
The ISMC has requested 150 acres of land in Mysuru’s Kochanahalli Industrial area, and will be one of India’s first and largest semiconductor units under the Centre’s India Semiconductor Mission once the project is approved by the Centre. It is likely to generate about 10,000 indirect employment opportunities and ancillary semiconductor ecosystem industry development in the area with significant multiplier effect.
Higher Education and IT/ BT Minister C. N. Ashwath Narayan was also present.