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S. Korea’s LH Corp. gets approval for MoU to build smart city in India

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Korea Land and Housing Corporation (LH) has moved a step closer to building its second smart city in India after its bagged a deal to build its first smart city in Kuwait. Last month, LH signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Kalyan-Dombivli Municipal Corporation, the Maharashtrian city’s governing body, on a strategic partnership to build New Kalyan Smart City in India. The two parties held a ceremony on Thursday after approval was made by the local municipal assembly, LH said on Friday. The latest smart city project is the second of its kind after LH signed a project deal with Kuwait to develop South Saad Al Abdullah New City last year.

Kalyan-Dombivli – located 30 kilometers east from India’s business capital of Mumbai – has been included as one of the 100 cities in India to be developed under the Smart Cities Mission, a smart city development initiative introduced by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Under the initiative, 100 smart cities will be built across the country as part of the government’s efforts to improve living standard and boost economic growth by improving infrastructure such as living water, sewage, electric, telecommunications, and transportation systems. Sixty cities have been designated so far for the plan and additional cities will be named this year.

Korea’s participation in India’s smart city development project comes after the two countries adopted a joint statement for special strategic partnership during Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Korea in May 2015 that highlights the promotion of government to government projects. The New Kalyan Smart City project will build a city of a 65,000 population on a site of 2.5 million square meters with 15,000 households. The project, which is estimated to be worth 380 billion won ($334.8 million), will not require LH any initial investment costs to secure land because the Kalyan-Dombivli Municipal Corporation will purchase the land.

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