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Bengaluru: UK Deputy High Commissioner Jan Thompson lauded Karnataka government’s efforts to become a leading state in tackling climate change and rapid adoption of green energy.

Speaking at the Bengaluru Tech Summit 2020, Jan Thompson said it is interesting to note that Karnataka is leading India in the green initiative by bringing more EVs on roads, installing more charging stations and moving towards green energy.

“We have initiated more partnership with the Karnataka government, especially for electric vehicle ecosystem building and also reduce pollution. We have also a green fund for doing more investment in the space of tech startup in climate change and green enegy,” she said.

Jan Thompson also lauded the city level partnership with Bengaluru for launching the Clean Air Testbed Drive initiative on Church Street to reduce pollution.

“We have to scale up Green-tech not only at the industrial level but at an individual level too and chart a cleaner development path. Green-tech also helps us for the sustainable and prosperous future,” she said.

Commenting on UK’s initiative, she said during fiscal 2020 the country has halved emission and it also made sense economically. Besides planning to hold UN Climate Change Conference in 2026, she also highlighted UK’s continuous action and collaboration with India going forward.

Speaking at the panel discussion, Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister C N Ashwathnarayan said Karnataka is recognised as the nation’s “Startup Capital” and “Innovation Capital” and is home to the Silicon Valley of India, Bengaluru.

“Karnataka is the undisputed leader in the country in sectors such as Information Technology, Machine Tools, Aerospace, Biotechnology, Electric Vehicles, and Electronics. I am delighted to say that Karnataka has also implemented several initiatives aimed at promoting and increasing the use of green technology,” said C N Ashwathnarayan.

He highlighted the fact that Karnataka was the first state in India to introduce an electric vehicle policy aimed at promoting manufacture and use of battery-run green vehicles.

“The state is aiming for 100% electric mobility in certain vehicle segments. Our capital city, Bengaluru, is home to e-mobility startups like AtherEnergy, SUN Mobility, NDS Eco Motors, Yulu and Mahindra Electric,” he said.

Pavagada Solar Park, developed in Tumkur district in Karnataka, is the world’s largest solar park and aims to shift the dependency from conventional power resources to eco-friendly energy resources.

“UK is one of our most important GIA partners, and we are indeed delighted to see our relationship strengthen over the years. UK has been known for its startup and innovation strength and is known for achievements in Artificial intelligence, Fintech, Regulatory Sandbox and Creative Tech among others. Government of Karnataka has collaborated with UK have on various occasions like Innovation Challenge Fund and Go Global where Karnataka startups have had the opportunity to grow at a global scale,” said the Deputy Chief Minister.

Going forward, the Deputy Chief Minister said Karnataka and UK will continue to work together to further strengthen and grow our partnership.

“Creative Tech, Data Science and AI and regulatory sandboxes will be few of the areas of focus for Karnataka to work together with the UK counterparts. I would like to wish a successful session for UK and looking forward to furthering interactions to strengthen our partnership,” he said.

UK Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office Lord Tariq Ahmad said as economies around the world recover from the impact of Covid-19, this is the time to look to future.

“We must take the opportunity to build back better to create a wolrd that is green, clean and sustainable. We want to work even more closely with India to mobilise global action plan at COP26, because we both lead by example,” said Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon.

Speaking at the discussion, Deputy High Commissioner Karnataka & Kerala Jeremy Pilmore- Bedford said aapplicationof green technology is at the heart of UK’s ambition to build back better from the current Covid crisis.

“Collaboration of innovative startups and companies from UK and India will be key to address climate change issues and secure the future of the planet for generations to come,” said Jeremy Pilmore- Bedford.

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