Dubai-based Technology and Media Free Zone Authority (TECOM) and the Kerala Government on Sunday signed an agreement for setting up a mega Information Technology (IT) infrastructure project in nearly 100 hectares of land in Kochi under the brand name Smart City.
The deal, widely perceived as one promising to draw the attention of global IT majors to Kerala, was signed here in the presence of Ministers, including Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan and top executives of TECOM.
Ahmad Bin Byat, executive chairman of TECOM Investments, and Chief Secretary Lizzie Jacob signed the document on behalf of the respective parties.
Besides TECOM Investments, Sama Dubai is associated with the Smart City Kochi project. Both have Dubai Holding as the parent company. Mr. Byat said TECOM hoped to put Kerala on the global IT map with its project. Smart City Kochi was the first facility of the company in India and the second in the world. It would form part of a network of similar projects being planned by TECOM worldwide. Recently, TECOM signed an agreement with the Government in Malta to set up its Smart City at Ricasoli in that country.
Mr. Byat said TECOM's expectation was that many global and Indian companies would base their Indian operations and business at Smart City Kochi. Several companies had already shown interest in the project, he added.
The project envisages creating 88 lakh square feet of built-up space and supporting infrastructure for IT and IT-enabled service companies, generating an estimated 90,000 high-paying jobs in the next 10 years and spurring IT-based economic development in the State. A press release issued by the company said Smart City Kochi would involve an estimated investment of $350 million

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