Kerala Chief Minister begins Europe trip: arrives in Norway: Will arrive in UK on Oct 9
OSLO Oct 5: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and his team have arrived in Norway yesterday evening. B. Bala Bhaskar, Ambassador of India to Norway received the chief minister and his team. Industries Minister P Rajeeve, Fisheries Minister V Abdurahiman, chief minister's wife Kamala and grandson are part of the delegation. The Chief Minister will hold talks with the Norwegian Fisheries Minister and interact with the business community in Norway. The purpose of the visit is to study models in areas such as education, health and tourism and seek cooperation with these countries. The trip, which was scheduled to start on October 2 via Finland, was postponed at the last minute following the unexpected demise of CPM leader Kodiyeri Balakrishnan. Reports say that Finland is removed from itinerary. The Chief Minister directly came to Kochi to begin his trip after attending the funeral of Kodiyeri Balakrishnan in Kannur on Monday, sources said. Meanwhile, Kerala hopes to enlist Norway's expertise and investment in the maritime sector. Industries Minister P. Rajeev and Fisheries Minister V. Abdurahman will join Pinarayi Vijayan in Norway. The delegation will also seek Norway's counsel in creating climate change-resistant infrastructure, focusing on mitigating landslip risk during monsoon. From Norway, the delegation will fly to the UK. Health Minister Veena George will join the team in the UK. The Ministers will attend the Loka Kerala Sabha regional conference, an expatriate Keralites platform in London. Further, the ministers will visit universities in England as the precursor to setting up a Graphene Innovation Centre in Kerala, a joint venture of the Digital University of Kerala, Centre for Materials for Electronics Technology (C-MET) and Tata Steel Limited. The graphene park is integral to Kerala's effort to transform itself into a knowledge-based economy. The Central government is funding half of the ₹86.41 crore project, with Kerala providing the land and allied infrastructure. Scientists reckon graphene will substitute silicon in manufacturing photovoltaic cells and LED lights. The government has hired professional videographers to document the visits. Moreover, the Chief Minister's Office will communicate the outcomes of the visit to the media. The trip is scheduled to be wrapped up by October 12.