IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad today invited the UK to tap into the massive business opportunities offered by "a new India", especially in the digital domain, where the country has set its sights on becoming a USD 1 trillion digital economy in the coming years.
Speaking at Asia House, London -- a centre of Asian studies in the UK -- Prasad said that while the old India represented resources and business opportunities for the old Britain, "a new India again beckons UK with a host of business opportunities, especially in the digital arena".
"The future is very promising because India's digital economy, large size of our market, demographic dividend and passion for technology is creating enormous demand," a statement quoted the minister as saying.
"While we work out the details, no one doubts the potential to make India's digital economy worth USD 1 trillion, employing 5-7 million people in the next 5-7 years," he said.
The minister said that opportunities also exist in areas like 'green innovation' and digital networks that are secure.
"India offers massive scope in both the areas for investors from UK...No firm that has a stake in the future can afford to sit out the digital revolution taking place in India," Prasad asserted.
Stating that India and the UK share a "modern partnership" cemented by strong historical ties, Prasad said that education and science and technology were amongst the notable areas of bilateral relationship.
"UK is India's 15th largest goods trading partner and the fourth largest investor in India, while India is the third largest investor in the UK and emerged as the second largest international job creator with Indian companies having created over 110,000 jobs in the UK in recent months," he said.
Outlining India's prowess in areas of electronics manufacturing and software services, the minister said key initiatives like Bharat Net (rollout of optical fibre across gram panchayats), digital literacy and biometric identifier Aadhaar have bolstered India's position in the global digital landscape.
"India's IT exports in 2015-16 stood at USD 107 billion, which has increased to USD 125 billion in 2017-18," he said.
The total revenues of Indian IT companies rose to USD 167 billion in 2017-18, from USD 129 billion in 2015-16.
The minister emphasised that technologies like Artificial Intelligence will augment, not replace, jobs.
"India's approach will be (to) augment jobs using Artificial Intelligence rather than merely replacing human beings from job space. Only this will create a sustainable job market in future," Prasad said.
Stating that India is working on a new data protection and privacy regime, the minister hoped that the "robust law" will become a global benchmark in data security.
He, however, added that "privacy cannot be a shield of the corrupt and the terrorist".
Prasad further said that a balance should be struck between data availability, innovation, data anonymity and data privacy, as data is key to improving business outcomes.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)