October 17, 2020

Odisha Channel Bureau
Bhubaneswar: Odisha has immense potential to excel in the field of information technology and information technology-enabled services (IT and ITeS) and the state government is doing its best to create a conducive environment for it by providing proper road, rail and air connectivity; quality higher education; and health and social infrastructure, said Secretary, department of electronics and information (DEIT), Government of Odisha, Manoj Mishra, on Friday.

Mishra was speaking at a webinar titled, “Opportunities in IT & ITeS,” organised by Odisha Corporate Foundation (OCF), a non-profit organisation.

He said so far as creating a proper environment for the boost of IT & ITeS is concerned, the progress in the state is at par with other developed states of the country. Geographical location of Odisha serves an advantage and this is the right time to prosper this sector.

“Odisha is among the few states where the big four IT companies. However, it remained backward as it did not have proper infrastructure and conducive atmosphere. But, now IT & ITeS is being given maximum priority,” Mishra noted.

“In the past few years, we have been doing well. Last year, IT service exports from Odisha were valued at about Rs. 4,500 crore with the state getting the seventh position in the country,” he pointed out.

The contribution of “Make in Odisha” and skill development initiatives launched by the state government for industrial growth has had its positive impact on the growth of IT & ITES. The skill development environment in Bhubaneswar is of very high quality and the city has all the potential to get the status of an IT hub, Mishra added. “We are going to provide broadband connectivity to all the panchayats of the state soon,” he informed.

The Software Technology Parks of India’s (STPI) commercialisation and industrialization strategy for startups has created opportunities for young entrepreneurs especially during the pandemic times, said Director, STPI, Bhubaneswar, Manas Panda.

STPI has generated more than 20,000 direct employment opportunity, he informed and added that 3-4 more STPIs are on the cards in the state. Besides, the Fab Lab is planning to open 12 next generation incubation centres in the country and Bhubaneswar will get one. This apart, a characterisation lab is also going to open in the city in collaboration with the state government, he added.

Group president (strategic HR) of Reliance Industries, Mumbai, Bijay Kumar Sahoo shed light on chalking out strategies for growth of digital skills in Odisha and creating opportunities for it. He dwelled upon the current state of IT and ITeS in the state and stressed that this was the right time to make progress in this sector.

From 2010 onwards the state has a conducive environment for boosting the startup ecosystem. The state government is not only promoting startups, but also providing opportunities for them to grow. Around 23 per cent startups are IT-based, said Managing Director, TATWA Tech Ltd, Ayashakanta Mohanty. “The state has miles to go and it can secure a bright future in this sector,” he added.

Former Odisha chief secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik said prosperity of the state depends on the quality of technical education and progress of IT & ITeS. A combined effort by all stakeholders can ensure progress of this sector.

Manmath Sahoo from Boston Consulting Group (BCG), Singapore, was the convenor of the event, which was attended by representatives of various IT and ITeS firms of the country and abroad.

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