Karnataka has always been at the forefront of industrial
growth in India. With its inherent capabilities coupled with its enterprising
citizens, Karnataka provides the ideal choice for investment opportunities.
Endowed with favourable agro-climatic conditions, it is involved in production
of several food and non-food crops. The main industrial units in the State
are in the areas of Information technology (IT), biotechnology, textiles,
steel, cement, handlooms, tourism, etc. Karnataka is also known as the
capital of Agarbathi (Incense Sticks), arecanut, silk, coffee and sandalwood.
Besides, there is an abundant availability of educated and trained technical
manpower, particularly in engineering, management and basic sciences fields.
Sixty six per cent of the total population resides in rural
areas, whose main occupation is agriculture and allied activities. These
activities account for nearly 46 per cent of the work force in Karnataka
State. Major food and non-food crops are paddy, jowar, ragi, maize, bajra,
wheat, pulses, groundnut, sunflower, cotton, sugarcane and tobacco. The
State contributes about 6.32 per cent in national foodgrains production.
As per the Agricultural Census of 2000-01, the State has about 123.07
lakh hectares of cultivable area, out of total geographical area of 190.50
lakh hectares, accounting for 64.60 per cent. The total number of operational
holdings is 70.79 lakhs with 1.74 hectares, as average size operational
holding. Small and marginal farmers account for 72.9 per cent of the total
holdings, cultivating about 34.4 per cent of the total cultivable area.
Karnataka enjoys a prominent position on the horticultural
map of India. The State is blessed with natural resources, favourable
agro-climatic conditions and enterprising farming community, which offer
ample scope for an all-round development of horticulture. Horticulture
covers an area of 15.81 lakh hectares in the State. The horticultural
policy focuses on area expansion, dissemination of new technology and
production and supply productivity of planting materials. In addition,
Karnataka is also the leader in floriculture, accounting for 75 % of India's
total flower production.
Karnataka leads the Indian biotechnology revolution with
its excellent infrastructure and a highly integrated environment for biotech
research. It is host to a number of leading biotech companies and start-ups,
as well as some of the finest R&D facilities in the world, such as,
the Indian Institute of Science, the National Center for biological sciences,
the Jawaharlal Nehru Center for Advanced Scientific Research, the University
of Agricultural Sciences, the Central Food Technological Research Institute,
and the Institute of Bio-Informatics and Biotechnology.
Karnataka is the first State to establish a large scale
Biotechnology Centre under public sector to cater to the needs of farmers
of the State, with an objective to produce quality-plant materials and
conserve the genetic diversity of horticulture plants. Also, biotech policy
has been framed with the aim of encouraging investments, developing infrastructure
and enhancing human resources.
The State has been a pioneer in industry and has the distinction
of building a strong and vibrant industrial base, which combined the strengths
of a large public sector, privately owned large and medium industries
as well as a very wide and dispersed small-scale sector. Good labour relations
have helped the State achieve pre-eminence on the industrial map. In more
recent times, Karnataka has emerged as the knowledge and technical capital
of the country. The thick concentration of information technology (IT)
related industries, bio-technology, BPOs and KPOs, combined with strong
research and development institutions and a large pool of qualified trained
manpower, have ensured that the State is a leading global player. The
Government has been consistently pursuing progressive industrial policies
to meet the changing needs of the States economy and industry. Karnataka
is also among the most preferred destinations for foreign investments
in India and houses around 65 of world fortune 500 companies.
Being a major producer of cotton and silk, Karnataka has
become a major center for textiles and garments with high exports potential.
The Karnataka Government actively encourages this industry by setting
up apparel parks that offer all modern facilities required for the industry
to flourish. In handicrafts industry, Karnataka presents a wide
range of objects like, exquisite sandalwood carvings, intricate inlay
work on rosewood, splendid bronzes, beautiful bidriware, colourful lacquerware
toys, ethnic dhurries, batiks, stone studded jewellery and incense sticks.
The State is also home to other industries like electronics,
telecom, aerospace, processed foods, automobiles, banking and finance,
mining, steel, cement and much more. All such industries provide employment
to a large number of people in the State.
Information Technology (IT)
Karnataka, the Silicon State of India, is the most favoured
destination for information technology (IT) and other knowledge based
industries. The State has the most investor friendly policy. It has undertaken
major initiatives in the e-governance area. It has computerised all treasuries.
It is programmed to implement the delivery of caste and income certificates,
birth and death certificates, old age pensions, domicile certificate,
etc. under the Rural Digital Services (RDS) project.
Besides computerising Government offices, latest information
to the farmers regarding techniques of crop production, horticulture,
animal husbandry, fishery, sericulture and diary farming has also been
computerised. Majority of Bangalore's software exports are in the high
technology areas, IT access networks, optical networks, video broadcasting,
bluetooth, WAP, 3G Wireless Applications, VOIP, ATM switches, SDH, etc.
Major Information Technology activity in Karnataka is concentrated
in Bangalore. Bangalore has been recognised as the 'IT capital of India',
the world over. Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), a nodal agency
of Government of India for software industry, functions from the electronic
city in Bangalore, and similar STPI is at the final stage of completion
at Hubli. STPI has taken a leas in spreading the IT revolution in the
Karnataka has numerous places of tourist attraction.
These are:- former princely capital Mysore with the Brindavan Gardens
and Srirangapattana nearby, Sharavanabelgola with the famous monolithic
statue of Gomateshwara (57 ft high), Belur, Halebid and Somnathpura with
the famous Hoysala monuments; Badami, Aihole and Pattadkal for the 1,300
year old rock-cut and structural temples; Hampi, the famous open air museum
(ancient Vijayanagar); Gulbarga, Bidar and Bijapur, renowned for their
Indo-saracenic monuments; Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Uttara Kannada Districts
for beautiful beaches; Mangalore and Karwar for ports; Chitradurga, Bidar,
Basavakalyan and Gulbarga with attractive forts; Bandipur National Park,
Bannerghatta National Park; Ranganthittu, Kokkre Bellur, Mandagadde, Gudavi,
Attiveri (famous bird sanctuaries); Jog, Sathodi, Shivanasamudra, Mogod,
Gokak, Abbey, Unchalli. Irupu, Hebbe, Kalhatti (mesmerising falls); Madikeri,
Kemmannugundi, B.R. Hills, Nandi Hills, Kudremukh, Kodachadri (picturesque
hill stations). Besides, Dussehra, Hampi, Chalukya, Kadamba, Hoysala,
Kodagu and Karaga festivals are depicting art and culture of Karnataka.