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Thursday, Apr 29, 2004

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CII drive to make Coimbatore units globally competitive

R.Y. Narayanan

Coimbatore , April 28

IN an effort to promote Coimbatore as a preferred destination for various industries and make these units globally competitive, the CII-Coimbatore Zone has adopted the slogan `Competitive Coimbatore-Creating GEMS' for implementation during the course of the year. (GEMS stands for Global Excellence in Manufacturing and Services.)

It is also planning to spread awareness about CII in smaller towns around Coimbatore by organising road shows.

Mr N. Krishna Samaraj and Ms Nandini Rangaswamy, Chairman and Vice-Chairperson respectively, told presspersons that the organisation had identified six sectors in which the region had earned a name for itself - textiles, engineering, auto components, IT and ITES, healthcare and education - for special emphasis during the campaign.

CII's involvement would be two-fold - helping industries build internal competencies in areas such as energy and cost management, training and HRD, and interacting with Government agencies on issues such as policies and infrastructure development.

Separate panels have been constituted to deal with different segments of the industry and service activities.

Mr Samaraj said that the textiles sector in the region had a total business turnover of around Rs 12,000 crore, of which exports constituted around Rs 6,000 crore. He added that the total business could be increased to Rs 15,000 crore.

Coimbatore also has established a reputation for quality engineering industry that generates an annual business volume of around Rs 10,000 crore, with exports contributing about Rs 3,000 crore. There is a potential to increase the performance to Rs 12,000 crore a year.

The auto components industry accounts for Rs 1,500 crore annually and this could go up to Rs 2,000 crore with India becoming a global outsourcing hub.

Healthcare is an area where Coimbatore has made a mark and it could become a preferred centre for health tourism too. The IT and ITES sectors have high potential and CII has been closely co-ordinating with the Government for the establishment of an IT park.

Already, Tata Consultancy Services has established a facility and Wipro has been seeking allotment of land to put up a centre.

Ms Rangaswamy said Coimbatore region had emerged as a knowledge centre with around 50,000 graduates and about 10,000 engineers coming out of the educational institutions every year.

Social responsibility is another area to which CII is committed. It is involved in issues such as lean and green Coimbatore, women's empowerment, and women's self help groups.

The chamber proposes to take initiative in one particular area of infrastructure development and the details may be formalised in about a month.

It has also drawn up a calendar of events to be taken up during the course of the year covering the six core sectors by organising seminars and exhibitions.

CII is also planning road shows in towns such as Erode, Salem and Pollachi to spread awareness about it.

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