Salta meet updated on Indian digital economy
India’s IT companies have left their mark in 200 cities of 80 countries, enabling India to emerge as a profound digital power, Minister for Electronics and IT Ravi Shankar Prasad has said.
He has highlighted the important role played by India’s home-grown technologies for promoting digital payment, including importance on interoperable open-source technologies so that these platforms can be used by others to develop more innovative structures as well as leading to new norms of digital identity-based authentication which are a generation ahead.
Prasad addressed the G20 Digital Economy Ministerial Meeting in Salta, in the north-west of Argentina, which was held 23-24 August 2018 and attended by 33 heads of delegation – Ministers, senior officials and representatives from invited countries and international organizations, like EU, UNCTAD, ITU etc.
Prasad said India’s digital economy will likely be valued at US$1 trillion $ in the next 3-5 years.
This is supported by the enormous scale of India’s digital infrastructure that included 1.21 billion mobile phones, of which 450 million are smartphones, nearly 500 million internet subscriber and an ever-increasing broadband availability being supported by optical fibre connectivity in 250,000 village clusters.
Elaborating, he said that the success of Digital India programme lay in the conscious efforts to bridge the digital divide and promote digital inclusion, based upon technology which is low cost, affordable, developmental and which fosters empowerment and inclusion.
He pointed out that India believed in internet access for all, adding that the Internet is one of the finest creations of the human mind, but it cannot be the monopoly of a few.
While Cyber-space is truly global, it must be linked with local ideas, local culture and local views, he noted.
The largest and most dynamic markets for digital services are in Asia, Latin America and Africa with India having one of the largest foot-print of several popular social media and other digital platforms.
It is only fair and just that the revenue and profit generated from these platforms be equitably reinvested in the largest markets to create more infrastructures and generate more job opportunities for the people there, he underlined.
The Minister expressed India’s concerns about data protection and individual privacy.
He updated delegates on India having put in place stringent measures backed by laws.
He said that privacy cannot prohibit innovations, nor can privacy become the shield for the corrupt or terrorists.
“We need data to improve businesses, but the data must be anonymous, objective, and taken with consent,” he added. fiinews.com