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Indian digital economy is poised to grow to an estimated $4 Tn by 2022, as per assessment of technology companies, said a recent report. The government had earlier assumed the growth to be about $1 Tn by 2022.

IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said, “There was unanimity among all the participants that a $1 Tn digital economy is an understatement. India has the immense potential to go to $2 Tn to $4 Tn digital economy potential.”

The companies reported the aforementioned development at a meeting chaired by IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. The meeting was organised with industry stalwarts to formulate a growth plan.

The meeting was attended by Nasscom President R Chandrashekhar, Google India’s Rajan Anandan, Rishad Premji from Wipro, Indian Cellular Association National President Pankaj Mohindroo, NIIT Chairman Rajendra Pawar, and Hike Messenger CEO Kavin Bharti Mittal, among others.

The government is currently looking to formulate a new set of strategies to support this growth. This includes a ‘new electronics policy, software product policy, and a framework for data security and protection.’

“One participant said that BPO alone has the potential to reach $1 Tn. One participant said that electronics manufacturing itself has the potential to reach that in coming in the 3-4 years. I asked them specifically that is this the hope shared by all. All of them said we share this,” Prasad said.

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The IT minister also added that the meeting had brought out the need to promote an ecosystem to facilitate more startups in areas like education, agriculture, and healthcare.

He said, “I have decided that we will have a coordinated action with the Health, Agriculture and HRD Ministries to promote an ecosystem to facilitate more startups in these areas.”

He further added that the government will explore the idea of setting up special innovative zones for startups. He also stated that a framework for startup cluster policy will be developed.

The report stated that digital skilling presented a $30 Bn opportunity. Talking about digital skilling, Tech Mahindra Managing Director and CEO CP Gurnani said, “We need to re-skill and re-purpose ourselves. We have a list of different skills, where we need people. If you re- skill yourself in blockchain or AI, there is no shortage of jobs, globally.”

The report further states that Ministry of Electronics and IT has projected the IT and ITeS sector to grow to $350 Bn by 2025 from $160 Bn, while the electronics sector is poised to touch $300 Bn by 2025.

Telecom and ecommerce are projected to grow to $150 Bn each. Digital payments, cyber security, and the Internet of Things are expected to touch $50 Bn, $35 Bn and $20 Bn, respectively.

Apart from this, the minister identified digital payments, Make In India, StartUp India, Skill India as being among the top drivers of the digital economy. The digital economy is poised to generate 30 Mn employment opportunities by 2024-25.

(The development was reported by ET)

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