The recently launched production-linked incentive scheme for smartphone makers has already started paying rich dividends. Extending this to laptops, tablets could open up a $100-billion opportunity for India, reduce the trade gap with China and generate employment for millions.
Falling debt levels and an expected doubling of earnings in the coming year are expected to improve the health of the Indian telecom sector. But legacy issues such as the payment of AGR dues and the exorbitant cost of 5G spectrum will have to be resolved for the sector to once again become one of the engines of India’s growth.
New Delhi stayed away from the world’s largest trade bloc as its critical concerns were not addressed. While this makes sense for the moment staying away from the RCEP can be a short-term palliative but IT cannot be a long-term solution to India’s ambitions of emerging as a global manufacturing hub.
The production-linked incentive and phased manufacturing programme for the toy sector could attract many global toy makers to shift base to India from China. And if Indian start-ups can leverage India’s traditional games and take them to global markets, the industry can quickly scale up to global standards.
The Amazon Web Service Cloud project will ensure higher levels of data localisation and security in India and could pave the way for the country to emerge as a major cloud storage destination. This could open up economic opportunities worth tens of billions of dollars.
The Indian Prime Minister made a strong pitch to 20 of the world’s leading fund and asset managers to invest in India’s infrastructure and other sectors. Such investments could prove critical for the success of India’s PSU divestment programme and infrastructure building ambitions.
Indian auto, consumer durables, FMCG, steel and services sector companies are feeling cautiously optimistic about the future once again. They are stepping up fresh investments, handing out pay hikes and paying the government higher taxes in the form of GST.
Exorbitant spectrum prices, $20-billion on account of SC judgment on AGR dues and the need to link thousands of telecom towers with fibre are issues Indian telcos will have to tackle before they can unleash the potential of the new 5G technology. In short, internet reliability is the immediate priority across the country.