Jammu and Kashmir’s new startup policy for 2,000 Startups

The Jammu and Kashmir administration has recently given its nod to a new startup policy aimed at establishing 2,000 startups in the Union Territory by 2027. This initiative, approved by the Administrative Council under the leadership of Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, seeks to foster entrepreneurship by providing facilities to students, women, and support to entrepreneurs through collaboration with government, private entities, and high net worth individuals.

The newly approved policy, covering the period 2024-27, supersedes the startup policy previously notified in 2018. As part of this strategic move, the administration plans to establish a Venture Capital Fund amounting to Rs 250 crore, with an initial infusion of up to Rs 25 crore. The primary focus of this fund will be to invest in recognized startups within Jammu and Kashmir. The detailed modalities for the creation and utilization of the venture fund will be worked out by the concerned department in consultation with the finance department.

Furthermore, the J&K Entrepreneurship Development Institute (JKEDI) is expected to play a role in facilitating the allocation of land to startups with promising growth potential. In a bid to provide initial support to startups, there is provision for one-time assistance as seed funding, capped at Rs 20 lakh and disbursed in four equal installments, for startups recognized by JKEDI. The allocation of seed funding is limited to 25 startups per year, a decision influenced by budget constraints and the intention to effectively support a manageable number of startups.

While the government is committed to establishing 2,000 startups within three years, the emphasis on carefully selecting and supporting a smaller number of startups through seed funding underscores a focus on quality over quantity for sustainable long-term economic growth. The budgetary allocation for the implementation of the startup policy over three years is set at Rs 39.60 crore.

Recognizing the need to rejuvenate the existing startup policy and address emerging challenges in the sector, the Lt Governor-led administration has sought to create a dynamic and robust startup ecosystem in the Union Territory. Stakeholder consultations conducted by the Industries and Commerce department emphasized the importance of strengthening the incubation and acceleration ecosystem for startups, a aspect which has been incorporated into the current policy.

To ensure effective implementation, a high-powered committee headed by the chief secretary will monitor the scheme, while a task force committee led by the administrative secretary of Industries and Commerce will oversee its execution.

The approval of the new startup policy in Jammu and Kashmir reflects a strategic effort to invigorate the entrepreneurial landscape, providing financial support, facilities, and a conducive environment for startups to thrive. The administration’s commitment to quality and sustainability, as well as the incorporation of feedback from stakeholders, positions this policy as a catalyst for fostering innovation and economic development in the region.

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