Karnataka is looking beyond Bengaluru for its next big growth engine

Karnataka is repositioning its growth strategy and messaging to global investors, according to Dr. Murujesh Nirani, Karnataka Industry Minister.

Dr Nirani told BQ Prime in an exclusive interview that the government is consciously trying to decongest the capital city and create infrastructure at other key locations in the state. He said Beyond Bengaluru and Make for the World are a two-pronged approach being taken by the state government.

“The state has attracted investment commitments of INR 9.8 crore,” the minister said at the recent Global Investment Summit hosted by the state government.

But can promises be turned into real investments?

“We are 70% confident of a turnaround,” said Dr. Nirani.

“Out of the Rs 9.8 crore commitment, 85% to 90% is outside Bengaluru,” the minister said. The state government has decided not to grant concessions to investors who are evaluating projects [just] outside Bengaluru.

“The focus is on Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities as well as Kalyan Karnataka, which is adjacent to Hyderabad. We will be franchising projects here,” he said.

The minister said that communication and mobility are given great importance by the state. In addition to the current airports, there are three more upcoming. Vijayapura in North Karnataka, Hassan and Shivamuga.

In addition, “We have proposed five more airports in Davanagher, Chikkamagaluru, Raichur, Bagalkot and Kupala,” said Dr Nirani. We’ll have 16 airports in total, and once we’re done, we’ll have one airport per 100km.

Among the large proposals, JSW will invest INR 1 crore over the next five years. Rs 42,000 crore will be earmarked towards the green hydrogen project for captive use. The minister said Adanis also proposed to invest Rs 1 lakh crore in projects focused on green energy, besides data centers and the service sector.