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Policy to come in 7-8 days to promote private sector R&D in railways: Vaishnaw

Policy to come in 7-8 days to promote private sector R&D in railways: Vaishnaw


Policy to come in 7-8 days to promote private sector R&D in railways: Vaishnaw

The Indian Railways will come up with a policy in the next 7-8 days to make private-sector research and development a major part of the railway budget with 90 per cent allocation in the future, Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said Wednesday.

While speaking in the concluding session of a post-Budget webinar on technology-enabled development, the railway minister said the defence and space sector has already broken the silos by opening up research and development (R&D) for the private sector and the same needs to be done in other sectors as well. “We are starting something in the Railways soon. In another 7-8 days, we will launch a new policy where private sector R&D would become an integral part or rather major part of railways R&D budget.

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“We do hope that going forward, probably 90 per cent of railways R&D budget would be in the private sector compared with 100 per cent in the public sector at present,” Vaishnaw said. Vaishnaw, who also handles the telecom and IT ministry, appreciated industry suggestions on the spectrum management and called for action from the industry to push domestic manufacturing of technology products.

“Thought process on the use of spectrum is changing. For a long period, spectrum was viewed as a revenue-generating resource. The last two years have shown a public good element of the spectrum. “I am happy to observe that there is a broad consensus on spectrum management issues which are basically leading to the public or to technology improvement or technology development. This we now need to convert in clear policy statements which can be then implemented,” he said.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the webinar and called for practical ideas and innovative suggestions from the industry during the day for speedy implementation of measures announced in the budget. The PM had touched upon the announcement made in the budget for the 5G ecosystem, design-linked incentive programme, optical fibre roll-out, gaming sector development, localisation of technology, fintech, geospatial data, data governance and electric mobility, etc.

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