3-day global meet ‘Kerala Looks Ahead’ to begin on Feb 1


PTI, Jan 30, 2021, 8:08 PM IST

Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will inaugurate on February 1 a three-day virtual global conclave that seeks to lay down the roadmap for Kerala’s long-term development by factoring in perspectives from top economists, industry leaders, administrators and planners amid a changed world order due to COVID-19.

Industry stalwarts Ratan Tata, Kumar Mangalam Birla, Azim Premji and Anand Mahindra and Nobel laureate Amartya Sen are among the speakers to address various sessions of the meet titled ‘Kerala Looks Ahead'(KLA).

Nobel laureate-economist Professor Joseph Stiglitz and Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist with World Health Organisation (WHO), will address the inaugural session on February 1, an official statement said here.

Hosted by the Kerala State Planning Board, the conference and consultation will look at suggestions and the best practices to achieve a paradigm shift in the State’s progress, by building on historic achievements in welfare and invigorating growth and development through a long-term economic vision and infusion of technology into key sectors.

The brochure and schedule of the event were released by Planning Board Vice-Chairperson VK Ramachandran and Member Secretary Venu V IAS at a press conference here on Saturday.

”Kerala is poised for a major transformation and as decided by the Chief Minister we are looking at specific areas where technology and science can play a pivotal part. The conference will help us learn from the best practices from the national and international levels,” Ramachandran said.

”At a time when we are making efforts to shape tomorrows Kerala, this conference will help key sectors that need deeper insights to fast track the transformation of the State into a knowledge economy,” Venu said.

Nine themes of deliberations, to be covered by different sessions, are primary sector (agriculture, fisheries and animal resources development), modern industrial possibilities, higher education (including international academic collaboration), skill development, tourism, information technology, e-governance, local governments, and federalism and development financing.

”It is important that a conference of this dimension is taking place when Kerala is set to initiate its 14th Five YearPlan (2022-27). The insights and suggestions emerging from the meet could become valuable inputs for the plan,” Ramachandran said.

A special session on industry would be held on the final day, ahead of the valedictory session.

The special industry session on February 3 would also be attended by Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Executive Chairperson of Biocon Limited, Kris Gopalakrishnan, Chairperson of Axilor Ventures, M A Yusuff Ali, Chairperson of Lulu Group, Ravi Pillai, Managing Director of RP Group and Azad Moopen, Chairperson and Managing Director of Aster Medcity.

Experts who would speak in different sessions include Trilochan Mohapatra, Director General of Indian Council of Agricultural Research; Modadugu Vijay Gupta, Former Assistant Director-General, World Fish Centre; Patrick Heller, Professor of Sociology, Watson Institute, Brown University; Ju-Ho Lee, Former Minister of Science, Technology and Education, Republic of Korea and SD Shibulal, Co-founder of Infosys.

Thematic sessions on Software, Hardware, Agriculture and Animal Husbandry were held last week, setting the context for wider discussions and drawing conclusions at the meet, the statement added.

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