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World Bank to build own office space in Chennai

Our Bureau

Chennai , Nov. 17

THE World Bank hopes to complete construction of its own office premises in Chennai by September 2004.

After this, the bank's back office, now functioning from a rented space in the city, will shift to the new office, says a press release issued by the Tamil Nadu Government.

The State Government has allotted 3.55 acres of land near the Tidel Park for the bank to construct its office.

Mr Fayezul H. Choudhury, Vice-President and Controller, World Bank, Washington D.C., has informed the Chief Minister, Ms J. Jayalalithaa, about the bank's plans to construct its own office space.

The World Bank inaugurated its back office centre in Chennai in March 2002. The centre, spread over 26,000 sq.ft, is located at Raheja Towers on the arterial Anna Salai. At that time, the bank had said that all its accounting functions and global payrolls would be processed out of the Chennai centre. This was also the bank's first offshore centre for what was considered a headquarters function.

From about 70 employees at the time of inauguration, the centre now has 180 staff, according to the release.

Mr Choudhury had told presspersons on the sidelines of a conference on e-governance in the city last week that the bank was considering moving some of its complex functions like monthly valuation of bonds and derivatives to its Chennai back office. The bank required about 60,000 sq. ft. of space. Since its inauguration, the office here had moved up the value chain from doing just back-end processing to complex analysis.

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