Swiss companies in Pune are joining hands to set up a centre of excellence for manufacturing that will provide vocational education at par with institutes in Switzerland.

The centre will be set up as a not-for-profit organisation under the Indian company law.

This initiative is being rolled out in alliance with Malhotra Weikfield Foundation, which has offered land for the purpose at Koregaon Bhima near Pune.

This Foundation has also offered to construct part of the building and offer at nominal lease rental to the Centre.

This Centre - which is expected to be operational in 2016-17 - will offer 4-year courses in polymechanics, mechatronics, welding and design.

It is supported by AZW, Skillsonics, Gherzi Engineering and Cleantech Switzerland.

Contributions by the promoter companies will qualify as corporate social responsibility.

The Centre will also host a Swiss Centre of excellence for Agriculture to train agri-entrepreneurs and agri-technicians, supported by Syngenta Foundation.

Over 20 Swiss companies have manufacturing facilities in Pune region. Most of these factories are serving as global competence centres offering products and services at par with the parent companies.