Skill academy to boost Kerala’s MSME sector

September 14th, 2012 - 7:03 pm ICT by IANS  

Kochi, Sep 14 (IANS) The Kerala government has decided to set up an international skill academy to boost the growth of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME). This was announced by the state Labour Minister Shibu Baby John here Friday.

Speaking at the Emerging Kerala-2012 Global Connect, John said quite a few players have already shown interest in the project.

According to him, training in construction would be a focal area of the academy, given the urgent need to keep pace with the state’s increasing urbanisation.

Second in priority would be imparting training in multi-skills such as retail and hospitality, he told delegates at a sectoral session on ‘MSME & Skills’ on the final day of the three-day summit.

“IT (Information Technology) will come next. The academy is conceived to fetch pass-outs high-end jobs on the one side and those like BPO (business process outsourcing) on the other,” John said.

Entrepreneurship education and training would also be provided at the academy, John said.

The minister pointed out that the government had recast the age-old employment exchanges into employability centres, which would first conduct an aptitude test.

The minister said that the Malayali ability for work was well known. “It was known to the world as early as in the 1960s, when Malayali nurses migrated upcountry and skilled labourers moved out to the Persian Gulf. But somewhere down we lost it, one reason being the below-par communication skills,” he said.

Amitabh Kant, CEO and managing director of the Delhi-Mumbai Investment Corridor Development Corporation, said that it was wrong to think that the people of the state generally lacked entrepreneurship talent. There were several successful Keralite businessmen abroad, Kant said.

He also said that there was no truth to the notion that Kerala lacked land for industrialisation. Kant said the state is of the size of Singapore and Hong Kong, which are among the world’s most advanced cities. He said vertical growth would be necessary for the development of the state.

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