India can embark on a $1 trillion digital economy journey by tapping into manufacturing, engineering and digitalization in the next five years. This is possible as the COVID-19 pandemic has created an irreversible shift for innovation and is creating new opportunities in how products are designed, engineered, consumed and serviced through contactless systems, intelligence and analytics, and software-led systems.
Addressing the 13th edition of the “Design and Engineering Summit” of IT industry association Nasscom, the Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar said these tectonic shifts are going to call for a capability changeover to embedded systems, digital innovation and cyber security.
Engineering, Research & Development (ER&D) sector generates over $31 billion in revenue and is home to more than 1,000 global companies that have set up centers in India for product R&D across diverse sectors. Moreover, 12 of the top 50 Engineering Service Providers are headquartered in India and 44 of the top 50 service providers have ER&D operations in India. Over 70% of the 50 most innovative global companies have an R&D center in India.
“It’s almost like there is India in almost every product we consume,” Chandrasekhar said. “India must build innovative solutions for the world and for itself; build for the next billion, build solutions that enable the country to meet its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and build solutions that can prevent the next pandemic.”
Being an engineer himself, the minister shared that the joy of building is something to be cherished and when linked with India’s development and innovation, it becomes even more laudable. Chandrasekhar said India’s productivity linked incentive (PLI) scheme has recorded a phenomenal response with the proposals approved for electronics hardware set to generate production of $22 billion over the next four years.
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“The PLI scheme has been extended across sectors – textile, auto etc. and the Make in India vision is attracting global and Indian companies to manufacture in the country. This is very important as I think of the ER&D sector. India can be an integrated partner with design, engineer and manufacture in the country,” he said.