16 December 2022 | News
Sessions hosted on emerging landscape of biotechnology in Odisha
The Make In Odisha Conclave’22, the flagship investor summit of the Government of Odisha, was organised from November 30th to December 4th, 2022 and focused on highlighting unique opportunities to understand the state policies and regulatory environment poised towards ease of doing business along with the vast existing and emerging business opportunities across sectors based on its natural resources and technological progresses.
On day three of ‘Make in Odisha Conclave 2022’, sectoral session on biotechnology was organised by Science and Technology (S&T) Department with special focus on investment opportunities in biotechnology sector in Odisha.
More than 200 participants, including entrepreneurs, government officials, and academicians took part in the session. Bhubaneswar City Knowledge Innovation Cluster (BCKIC) Foundation, an initiative of the office of the Principal Scientific Adviser to Government of India, was the knowledge partner of the Science and Technology Department.
The session deliberated on competitive advantages of Odisha in the promising areas of Biotechnology such as agriculture, marine and diagnostics. The S&T department expo pavilion was also focussed on Biotechnology and 15 biotech startups showcased their technology to potential investors, experts, and policy makers. During the 5 day display expo, between 30th November to 4th December, more than 1000 delegates visited the stalls and interacted with startups.
Ashok Chandra Panda, Minister of Science & Technology, Government of Odisha said, “Odisha is a unique littoral state with abundant biodiversity. The 480 km long coastline, rich mangrove and swamplands in Bhitarkanika, brackish water lakes like Chilika, forests like Simlipal and medicinal plant rich Mahendragiri give ample opportunity for biotechnology explorations. The myriad agro-climatic zones and natural resources of the state offer tremendous opportunity, particularly in the fields of agriculture, food processing and floriculture along with marine biotech.”
Biotech investment in Odisha
With government support under Biotech Policy 2018 and IPR 2015, Bharat Biotech through its Anchor Tenant- Sapigen BiologiX has invested more than Rs 500 crore for manufacturing various vaccines in Odisha Biotech Park at Andharua. They have committed additional investment of Rs 700 crore for expanding the scope of its operations.
Companies including Sapigen BiologiX, CorpGini and Huwel have committed investment to the tune of Rs 1250 crore in Biotechnology Sector and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The investment will generate direct and indirect employment opportunity for more than 8,000 people.
During the conclave, professional bodies like Association of Biotechnology Led Enterprises (ABLE) have signed an MoU to bring biotech industries to Odisha for setting up of their enterprises, to mentor & nurture biotech startups, bring international knowledge groups to Odisha for investment purpose and to prepare a conducive Biotech Policy for Odisha.
Similarly, an international body Global Network of Entrepreneurs and Professionals (GNEPO) has signed MoU to facilitate Global-Odisha entrepreneurial exchanges, to provide a platform for bio-entrepreneurship development in Odisha with global outreach, identify & submit a mix of 10 potential contacts (mentors, entrepreneurs, investors, networkers, entrepreneurial professionals, corporate ventures, VCs, Angels) every year from across the globe those who have commitment and desire to help bio startups from Odisha.
After successful partnerships with Narayan Hrudalaya, L V Prasad Eye Institute, Care Hospitals, Ziqitza Healthcare, Glocal Healthcare, Tata Trust, CDAC, etc. providing specialised healthcare services in various formats, the government is keen to partner with private players to fulfil the unmet demand in the healthcare sector.
Deep dwelling on biotech landscape
At the Conclave, a panel discussion on biopharma deep dwelled on strengthening knowledge-based biotech economy in state through a robust network of pharma and biotech industry.
The importance of diagnostic, particularly molecular diagnostic, innovative drug, infrastructure and facilities, industry support for development & implementation technology as well as industries and academia together were discussed in the session.
On the other hand, the speakers at the panel discussion on agriculture deliberated on competitive advantages of Odisha in the promising areas of biotechnology such as agriculture, both land and marine bioresources, as well as in natural therapeutics, and emphasised on adoption of emerging technologies for sustainable agriculture and industrial processes and how Odisha’s biotechnological best practices can be extrapolated to other places in similar settings.