CHENNAI

Daily travel frustrations are a hallmark in Chennai. It is jokingly said that adding thousands of Nanos to Chennai roads would have no impact. The city is used to rash autorickshaw driving. Corruption is one of the main factors arresting the city's growth. It needs to think creatively and critically about its present and future. It has to sponsor meaningful spatial and other facets research to regain its erstwhile position of pride. As of now, Chennai is unmistakably a case of potential unfulfilled. .

Re-imagining itself is the agenda to be taken, and taken vigorously. It has done well as the Detroit of India, being the second largest IT & ITES earner after Bangalore. Now it has to go further. It has to create its differentiation from Bangalore and other ITES hotspots; what has supported it so far has been large number of entrepreneurial inputs from NRIs, but this cannot be leveraged beyond a point. It is one of three port cities in this set of 10 cities. Since it is a shallow port, there are limitations. Nevertheless, it is a port and can exploit this coastal location by initiating high value endeavours. Inspiration can be drawn from ports of Norway and Finland which are into hi-niche activity despite being frozen. .

The finance sector needs to be made as dynamic as in Hyderabad (pro-rata basis). The stock exchange is in dumps. It can also develop better connectivity with South Asia and become the entry point of ASEAN to India. Its large education base has to be tweaked into vocational directions and enabled to possibly assume the mantle of India's knowledge-intensive industry-academic collaboration. .

Housing is a prickly issue. Better town planning and having supportive satellite towns is the need of the hour. Institutional handling of issues needs dramatic improvement. It has somehow maintained a cultural insularity, which has prevented assimilation of diversity. Herein, it can pick a tab or two from Taipei and Hong Kong, which have stayed culturally rich and yet attracted talent from diverse backgrounds. .

Again, Chennai has random yet prolific infrastructure activity going on, the aftermath of which would be borne by future generations. Straightening the city map evolution is the prime priority. It has to fear corporate mobility, as today's corporates are bound to a geography by tenuous threads, and can relocate before the blink of an eye. Kolkata has suffered because of this apathy to corporate interests, Chennai can be the next one awaiting this hit. With funds available today, simple focused development agenda is the key. Politically, it has to acquire a modern outlook, and must come out of the shadow of the state government and assert its own autonomy and identity. These are difficult contentions, but then sculpting a bright future for a gentle city is always a tough call. .

COMPETITIVE STRENGTHS .


Most competitive business costs
Very good supportive industries
Good incentives for business

COMPETITIVE WEAKNESSES .


Poor demand conditions
Unhealthy competitive intensity
Bad quality of life






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