The United Nations' telecom body ITU plans to set-up its first ever innovation centre in India to incorporate technologies from South Asian countries and emerging economies in standards for technologies.
The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Deputy Secretary-General Malcom Johnson Monday met Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundararajan to discuss the roadmap for setting up the innovation centre along with the union's first regional office for South Asia in India.
When contacted, Sundararajan said, "the proposal was approved in October. The ITU regional office and innovation centre are likely to start operations in July."
The ITU coordinates with countries and companies globally to set-up new technology standards in telecom space.
The innovation centre is expected to give opportunity to Indian technology firms to make their case for being part of global standards, which has been largely influenced by companies from developed countries and have huge influence on telecom businesses globally.
Indian companies in the past have obtained patents for telecom technologies, however, they could not reap business benefit as their technologies could not be incorporated in global standards due to low engagement of the country in international technology bodies.
"In the last four years, India has increased its participation around five-fold in terms of technical contributions. ITU has recognised it and hence a decision was taken to set-up regional office in India and its first ever innovation centre anywhere in the world," Sundararajan said.
For the first time, 10 Indian academic institutions will join ITU and the government has plans to scale up representation of academic institutions to 40 soon, she said.
The ITU charges 32,000 swiss francs, almost equal to USD 32,000, from an organisation for full time membership. However, the regional centre will offer it for around USD 2,000 per entity.
The ITU innovation centre will work on adoption of technologies by small and medium businesses to enhance their productivity. The centre will collaborate with firms in the region for joint research in the field of of standardisation for 5G, artificial intelligence and upcoming new technologies.
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