Policy aims to put Odisha among India’s top 3 ‘Startup Hubs’

Bhubaneswar: Aspiring to put Odisha among the top three ‘Startup Hubs’ in the country by 2020, the State government has come up with a ‘Draft Odisha Start-up Policy, 2016’.

The Startup policy, with an initial Capital Infrastructure Corpus Fund of Rs 25 crore, shall act as a catalyst in the economic growth of Odisha, creating models for scalability and replicability, across the State resulting in large scale employment opportunities, officials said.

“Government of Odisha plans to create a conducive environment for Startups, empower Startups to grow through innovation and design, create a world class scientific ecosystem and enable its youth to pursue their dreams within the State. We have sought inputs from every stakeholder. After getting their response, it will be finalized,” Higher Education minister Debi Prasad Mishra said.

The mission of the policy is to provide fiscal and non-fiscal benefits in a transparent and time-bound manner while streamlining rules, regulations, and legislation to create a Startup-friendly environment. The government hopes it will encourage incubators, including sector specific ones, aligning with the State’s strengths and requirements.

“It will create an enabling environment and supporting ecosystem that facilitates at least 1000 startups in the State in the next five years. Besides, it will encourage all major companies outside Odisha to include skill and infrastructure development for Startups as an integral component of their CSR activities,” said an official.

The policy, which will remain operational for a period of five years, will provide incentives and exemptions over and above the Startup policy of Government of India, and any other existing policy in the State.

The draft noted, a Startup council to be set up under the policy shall be responsible to drive innovation, advise prospective Startup, and guide the innovation ecosystem to foster innovation in the State. The Universities shall be advised to introduce courses in Startup education and entrepreneurship development, it added.

Inputs in entrepreneurship and innovation shall be introduced as part of the State School Syllabus to give students an introduction to the subject and help develop in them an aptitude for the same.