KARNATAKA BIOTECHNOLOGY POLICY v3.0 (2017 – 2022)
Karnataka is the biotech capital of India underpinned by a robust ecosystem owing to the presence of prominent educational and research institutions as well as an array of biotech enterprises, including established companies and promising start-ups.
Karnataka has been at the forefront of biotechnology in India and is rightly known as the biotech capital of India. Over the years, the development of a strong ecosystem and modern infrastructure through a proactive policy framework enabled Karnataka to achieve sustainable development and become the flag bearer of India’s biotechnology growth. Bengaluru, Karnataka’s science capital and Asia’s fastest growing technopolis, has developed into an ideal base for the biotechnology industry.
The state is home to many renowned educational and research institutes, including the Indian Institute of Science (IISc.), National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS), Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR), Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences (RGUHS), the University of Agricultural Sciences (UAS), Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI), Defense Food Research Laboratory, Indian Institute for Horticulture Research, University of Horticultural Sciences and others. There are several other state and private universities and research institutions. The presence of these premier institutes has contributed significantly to a surge in R&D activities in the state, eventually translating into path-breaking innovation.
In the last two decades, the state made major investments in infrastructure to support the expanding ecosystem, including the development of Bangalore Life Sciences Cluster, Bangalore Helix Biotechnology Park, as well as setting up of IC_CIFs (Incubation Centres and Common Instrumentation Facility) in tier-2 cities to aid the advancement of biotechnology sector in the state.
The new Biotechnology Policy released in November 2017 outlines the following objectives to maximize the potential of the state’s bio economy:
- Simplify administrative and clearance processes to create an enabling environment for the public and private sectors to invest across the biotech value chain
- Realign the academic and training discourses to strengthen and retain human capital to meet evolving industry requirements and contribute to mitigating challenges.
- Conduct coordinated and integrated R&D with an emphasis on facilitating progress beyond the lab to address key prioritized societal issues.
- Invest in foundations of life sciences by creating technology platforms and encourage more effective multi-disciplinary collaborations to expand the scale and scope of biotechnology and its impact on the society and economy
- Leverage IT and other technology (ESDM / AVGC) capabilities of the state to encourage development of Bio-IT tools and solutions.
- Institute funding mechanisms and mentorship programmes for biotech start-ups to stimulate innovations and discoveries that would benefit the society and growth of the bioeconomy.
- Extending financial incentives and concessions for attracting investments in the biotech sector.
- Foster the development of bioeconomy by supporting research and development (R&D) in emerging technologies
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Primary Research Based Profiling of Biotech Sector in Karnataka
A primary Research Based profiling of the Biotech Sector in Karnataka was carried out by ABLE in partnership with CMR, to assist KITS, Department of IT, BT and S&T, Government of Karnataka, to suggest and implement changes to help further growth of the Biotech sector in Karnataka. The survey was conducted from June 24, 2016 to September 1, 2016 through online, telephonic and face-to-face interviews, reaching out to about 420 stakeholders from industry, startups and academic/research institutions. More input was derived for the survey and a book was released in November 2017. Several observations from the survey were considered for the new biotechnology policy document released in 2017.