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Speech by Singapore Prime Minister at the official opening of the International Tech Park Bangalore on Friday,21 January 2000,at 11.00am at Bangalore, India

Chief Minister Krishna

Distinguished Guests

Ladies and Gentlemen

The International Tech Park Bangalore is a towering icon of the good relations that Singapore enjoys with India. It represents a tangible and concrete symbol of our two-way collaboration for mutual benefit.

It is therefore with great pride and satisfaction that I am here today to officially open the International Tech Park Bangalore, in the presence of His Excellency Shri Krishna and everyone here.

When I visited here in 1994, the Park was only a barren piece of land. But the developers and the authorities had vision and entrepreneurial drive. The timing for such a Park then was considered favourable. India was in the midst of economic liberalisation, while Singapore was on a regionalisation drive to enhance its economic linkages with its regional friends. And with the coming of the IT era, the strategic alliances of our two countries would bring great synergy. For example, India has a ready pool of IT expertise while Singapore has experience in developing and managing industrial and hi-tech parks which meet the standards of multinational corporations.

Today, I am extremely impressed by the progress of the Park. Firstly, the vision has been turned into reality. The Park is now not only a beautiful piece of architecture but is thriving with activities and events.

Secondly, while the Park may not be a Silicon Valley, it is an icon in Bangalore. Hence, it is apt to refer to it as the Silicon Plateau of India, one of the top ten IT destinations in the world. But more importantly, the integrated hi-tech Park sets the standard for a new generation of technology parks in India.

The Park has also done itself proud by being the first park in India to be accredited with ISO 9002 certification for the "management and operations of the Technology Park". This is definitely good news, as it represents the international endorsement of the Park's excellence.

It is heartening to know that the Park has, over a short span of time, made very good progress. Seventy-five per cent of office space have been committed since the Park was operational one-and-a-half years ago. The Park has also provided more than 2500 highly-skilled jobs for the people of Karnataka so far. When fully occupied, Phase 1 will have a projected 3,500 people working here.

The Park is now about to start Phase 2. I am optimistic that the joint developers will be able to build on the success of Phase 1.

India is a country with abundant high tech manpower resources and business opportunities. I would therefore like to see a bigger Singapore presence in India, and more Indian hi-tech presence in Singapore.

Singapore welcomes more Indian companies to use Singapore as a platform to expand their business into East Asia. One interesting area is E-business (or electronic business).
E-business is experiencing explosive growth in Asia, as evidenced by the large number of dot.com companies sprouting up throughout Asia. Indian IT companies will find that Singapore, with its first-world business and IT infrastructure, will be an excellent launching pad into the Asian market.

I take this opportunity to thank the central and state governments for their commitment and support for the project. I also congratulate the tripartite partnership of the Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board, Tata Industries and the JTC-led Singapore consortium for their constructive co-operation and dedication.

In conclusion, I would like to reiterate that the International Tech Park Bangalore is a good symbol of co-operation between India and Singapore. In fact, it should set the stage for further co-operation between our two countries.

Thank you.

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