Former NITI Aayog CEO and India’s G20 Sherpa, Amitabh Kant, has identified the Bangalore-Mysore region as the premier ecosystem for semiconductor design and manufacturing in India. Speaking at the India Global Innovation Connect event in Bangalore on June 6, Kant highlighted the region’s robust supply of electricity and minerals, deeming it the most viable location for establishing semiconductor fabrication plants.

“In India, no place has a better ecosystem for semiconductor manufacturing than the Bangalore-Mysore belt of Karnataka. The region offers the essential minerals, water, and steady electricity supply needed for this industry. Consequently, it could become the leading hub for both manufacturing and global design,” Kant remarked.

Kant noted that approximately 30-35% of India’s current semiconductor design work is already being conducted in Bangalore and Hyderabad, underscoring the region’s potential to cater to global semiconductor companies.

Addressing the proposed site for the country’s first quantum computing tech park, Kant affirmed that Karnataka is the ideal location for this emerging technology hub.

He emphasised the government’s focus over the next five years on skilling the youth in emerging technology areas, stating, “The next five years of this present government will concentrate on skilling and apprenticeship, creating new jobs in emerging sectors beyond the information technology sector.”

Kant also called for more upskilling start-ups to train young engineers in high-demand technologies. “We need more engineers to drive a new wave of Indian start-ups. For this, we need at least 2 million developers proficient in areas such as AI and data science. Engineering curricula must be quickly realigned to meet current demands,” he added.

Discussing the ₹1 Lakh Cr R&D fund announced in Budget 2024, Kant revealed that the fund would become operational within the next three to four months. His comments come as the global race for semiconductor dominance intensifies, with India aiming to establish a significant presence in this sector.

The central government’s initiatives, including the ₹76,000 Cr production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme for semiconductor manufacturing and ₹6,000 Cr for India’s Quantum Computing Mission, aim to leverage emerging technologies to drive innovation and bolster the start-up ecosystem.

Recent announcements reflect this push, with the Tata Group planning a semiconductor ATMP unit in Assam worth ₹27K Cr, Vedanta Group’s chip foundry in Gujarat’s Dholera, Zoho’s semiconductor manufacturing unit in Tamil Nadu, and Micron Technology’s INR 22K Cr semiconductor testing and packaging plant in Gujarat’s Sanand.

(With Agency Inputs)