In a bid to boost the startup ecosystem in the state, West Bengal Government has launched the State Startup Policy. It aims to support and nurture startup ecosystem in the state. The policy is in effect from January 1, 2016 till December 31, 2021.
The policy document has eight broad pointers comprising of a preamble, a vision, the state’s mission, the enabling environment for startups in the state, definitions related to various aspects of a startup alongside defining incentives and procedures to be followed by the startups. It also aims to create an environment and supporting ecosystem to facilitate about 10,000 startups in the next 10 years.
Under this policy, an Entrepreneurship Development Centre Network (EDCN) would be created by the state in association with universities and leading higher education institutes across all districts in the state to undertake the role of creating entrepreneurial aspiration among the youngsters and to incentivise entrepreneurship. To create a EDC, the universities will be provided up to INR 10 lakh by the state. The government will also support and strengthen existing business incubators & accelerators in the state and will also encourage setting up new business incubators in the state in collaboration with private sector. Presidency University is one of the first in the state to be a part of this initiative. The state would help to set up new incubators in government as well as private sector.
The policy will also allow startups to access government R&D labs through MSME Technology Facilitation Centre set up by the State Government in partnership with CSIR (Council of Scientific & Industrial Research).
It will also implement a supportive regulatory framework that enables hassle-free and time bound statutory clearances for all startups.
State will facilitate creation of a network of kick-starter funds for monthly sustenance or early stage funding to startups and the cost of filing and prosecution of patent application will be reimbursed to the incubated startup companies as per MSME Policy of Government of West Bengal.