Karnataka IT exports up by 52%
By agencies | Thursday, 28 April 2005, 07:00 Hrs
BANGALORE:Karnataka has maintained its reputation as the IT capital of India as it achieved a record 52 percent growth in software exports, touching 270.6 billion in 2004-05. The State, maintaining its higher than national average growth in dollar terms, recorded exports to the tune of $6.2 billion as against the national export of around $17.5 billion estimated by Nasscom. Exports from BPO sector was over 60 percent. Announcing the State's performance, Bangalore Software Technology Park of India Director B V Naidu and Karnataka Principal Secretary for IT and BT M K Shankaralinge Gowda said today that Karnataka continued to be the major IT destination in the country with 198 new companies, most of them small and medium enterprises, setting shop in the State. The State welcomed four new companies every week. Naidu said as many as 168 companies came to the State in 2003-04. Of the new firms this year, 129 were with foreign equity. Gowda said that during 2003-04, the State had earned a foreign exchange of 181 billion through software exports as against 123 billion the previous year. ''We will continue to maintain the high growth level and touch an export figure of Rs 350 billion this year.'' Naidu said 50,000 new jobs were created by the sector during the year in Karnataka, taking the total number to 2,85,000. Highly skilled technical manpower continued to be the main strength of Karnataka. Naidu said nearly 50 percent of the software exports came from the top ten companies, with the remaining contributed by small and medium enterprises. About 40 percent of the exports were from multinationals and foreign companies with captive software requirements. Hardware exports from the State marginally rose to 17.6 billion during the last fiscal as against 17 billion during 2003-04. Eight new companies, including Elcoteq, the first mobile handset company to start production in India, started its operations in the State. Besides Bangalore, the growth was also from secondary cities like Mangalore and Mysore, which were gaining ground in the international IT map. While exports from Mysore touched Rs 3.08 billion with a 72 percent growth, the figure for Mangalore was Rs 5.67 billion, a 25 percent growth. Karnataka State Director for IT and BT Javed Akthar said the Government had notified 500 acres of land in Mangalore for two software export zones, one of them being exclusively for IT companies. Hubli-Dharwad and Gulbarga were the other secondary cities identified for IT sector growth in the State. He said the State was likely to maintain its share of the national IT exports at around 36 percent achieved in 2003-04, up from 29 percent the previous year.