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Friday, November 17, 2006

SPEED (Southern Prosperity through Enhanced Economic Development)

In a bid to project Madurai as the next IT destination after Coimbatore, the Tamil Nadu Government has tied-up with the Confederation of Indian Industry –Southern Region (CII-SR), to organize a unique exposition-cum-conference called SPEED (Southern Prosperity through Enhanced Economic Development).

The three-day event to be held at Madurai from December 1, 2006 will be an interactive and demonstrative exhibition, along with a two-day conference and a buyer-seller meet. The main focus of the event would be to promote Madurai and other Southern Districts, as the next IT destination in Tamil Nadu.

Addressing the media, R Dinesh, executive director of TVS & Sons, and co-chairperson of SPEED 2006, said that the objectives of the event are to quantify and to project the strengths of the southern districts of Tamil Nadu by creating hubs, satellites and corridors with the focus on emerging sectors, apart from education, food processing, textiles, health care services and tourism sectors.

“The southern districts contribute over 19 per cent of the GSDP, have already attracted infrastructure investments of over Rs 33,000 crore. Since the region is abundant with skilled manpower, the region will continue to attract fresh investment in infrastructure and the manufacturing sector, which has the potential to create 80,000 new jobs in the next three years,” he said.

“SPEED would harness new investment initiatives and business opportunities for the southern districts of Madurai, Sivagangai, Thoothukudi, Tirunelveli, Virudhunagar, Ramanathapuram and Kanyakumari; initiate new innovative ideas; create platform for partnership and networking opportunities and encourage entrepreneurship among students,” Dinesh said.

CII has proposed a strategy to create a manufacturing hub in Madurai and satellite hubs at Virudhunagar, Tirunelveli and Thoothukudi, an export-cum-services hub at Thoothukudi, knowledge corridors at Madurai, Virudhunagar and Tirunelveli, and tourism corridors at Madurai, Karaikudi, Ramanathapuram and Kanyakumari.

Dinesh said the conference would discuss services & IT excellence in SPEED, opportunities in IT/ITES, educational infrastructure and competitiveness in southern Tamil Nadu, opportunities in automotive/textiles/food processing, key trends and opportunities in health Tourism, destinations in Southern Tamil Nadu and connectivity issues, among others.

“A Skills Training Institute is also proposed to be set up in Madurai to promote soft skills for diploma-holders in particular, which would help improve employability and higher levels of jobs,” Dinesh added.

Source: CIOL

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