Indian IT industry shares wish list for Union Budget 2015

The Indian IT industry has shared its wish list from the Union Budget 2015.

Microsoft India Chairman Bhaskar Pramanik

Over the past nine months, the Government has set the right context and articulated its vision for India’s economic development. We look forward to this vision being realized over the next year with key announcements in the Budget.

Programs such as Digital India, smart cities and Skill India require the creation of technological infrastructure that will need budgetary support. A policy framework for industry and SMEs in particular that encourages innovation and adoption of technology can boost the Make in India initiative. We hope this year’s budget will create an enabling environment for Indian industry to realize its growth potential.

Ravi Swaminathan, managing director of AMD India

We are interested in a transparent, stable and sustainable roadmap for creating a vibrant domestic industry. In the interim budget last year, the government pledged to support the growth of domestic information technology capabilities in both hardware and software, this year we expect the budget to be aggressive, focusing on making India emerge in the top 3 hardware countries in terms of demand.

With this budget, we look forward to India becoming a centre of excellence for product development and design and also being integrated into the global supply chain with manufacture of key components for both domestic and international markets.

Talking about the industry at a whole, we believe affordable broadband, radical government process re-engineering and the use of IT in all government processes will be the biggest enablers.

Partha Iyengar, vice president and head of Research – India, Gartner

The biggest expectations for the IT industry will be to put teeth behind the two slogans of Digital India and Make in India. A manufacturing revival in an IT savvy India would be a tremendous multiplier for the Indian IT industry, unlike in China, where manufacturing took off without too much IT support, and China is only now (last 2-3 years) starting to focus on IT as a white-collar productivity effort. This can be a game changer for India in the inevitable India vs China comparisons and a huge boost for Indian competitiveness on the global landscape.

Similarly, the Digital India initiative has huge ramifications for the Indian IT industry and Indian industry overall as well. It will bring better access to the vast areas of untapped rural India, which can drive unprecedented economic growth across industry, by allowing companies across all industries to tap the elusive bottom of the pyramid economic opportunity.

Country level infrastructure improvements needed to drive Digital India will also help spur industries embrace of the digital business paradigm, which will increasingly be a competitive imperative in the coming decade, as digital business hastens the demise of geographical reach as a competitive barrier.

Jaswinder Ahuja, managing director, Cadence Design Systems

With the focus on economic progress, the FY2014-15 budget is keenly awaited by the business community. Manufacturing, rural and urban last mile connectivity, and smart cities are some of the concrete initiatives the government has rolled out since assuming office last year. Coupled with the overall focus on accelerating growth, the economy has responded positively to such announcements.

Indian IT sector

For the electronics and semiconductor industry, the launch of the Make in India campaign was a much needed catalyst to fast-track the development of the eco-system, given the ground work laid down over the last few years. Preferential market access (PMA) to Indian companies and removal of import restrictions for equipment used by R&D facilities are some measure that can nurture innovation, encourage the building of manufacturing units and create employment opportunities.

Setting up an electronics regulatory authority that can take the lead on policy implementation and developing regulations can provide the necessary governmental guidance and infrastructure to speed up the growth of the ESDM sector in the country and help realize the goals as set forth by the Make in India campaign.

We hope the government will be able to address the need for a strong Goods and Services Tax (GST) that will include all indirect taxes. A strong roadmap to implement the GST can have a substantial impact on R&D and manufacturing. In general the Government should continue the focus on ease of doing business and non-adversarial approach of the tax authorities.

Koichiro Koide, managing director of NEC India                                                                        

India is on a high growth path currently. At the stage India is today, growth, both at social and economic front appears promising further with improvement in technology infrastructure in the country. Putting in place smarter ways of communication, public safety, transportation, and overall governance can empower India to achieve its growth and development objectives. The strategy has worked for Japan and several other countries across the globe, and is even more relevant today with technology is playing a much larger role in our lives. The union budget must encourage investment and innovation in technology infrastructure to make the new government’s agenda of building smart cities a reality.

Sanjay Rohatgi, president, Symantec India

The upcoming budget 2015-16 is an opportunity for the new government to accelerate the reform process unveiled over its first eight months in the office. While the growth rate has already started improving and the forecast for the next year is even better, we need a blue-print for sustained and sustainable growth over the next decade or two. It should focus on simplification, predictability and consistency in overall tax regime even as it goes for fiscal consolidation and broadening the tax net.

Technology has the potential to empower the 1.3 billion Indians through visionary programs like Digital India, Smart Cities and Skill India. The budget should pave the way for expeditious implementation of e-governance projects, incentivising investments in world-class data centers and cloud computing infrastructure besides a chance to be a pioneer in the realm of Internet of Things.

However, this should be done without causing disruptions in the free flow of data across borders – the lifeline of India’s IT exports. Such steps will ensure high availability of trusted and secure information ecosystem thereby providing much needed foundation for inclusive growth and development.”

Anil Valluri, president, NetApp India & SAARC

The Government has charted out quite an ambitious list of plans including the creation of a digitally enabled India, smarter cities and Make in India. To transform the lives of people by making them digital, the Union Budget 2015-16 should address the technology need of the hour. I’m sure that the budget will focus on providing investments in areas such as India’s technology infrastructure. A substantial amount needs to be earmarked to develop a robust network infrastructure across the country, which will be the foundation on which India’s digital economy will be built.

We also expect reduction in taxation for IT players, who will be key in realizing this network infrastructure. The government is taking up the ‘Make in India’ initiative in a big way. While this is a great initiative, the budget needs to address the issues of simplifying the tax regulations, improve ease of doing business and accelerate the speed of big ticket reforms on the anvil.

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  • Vissionary

    Is there any ray of hope for TRIPURA ?

    Lakhs of Educated Youths (and their families) of TRIPURA (2nd highest populous state in NORTHEAST) have been languishing in complete frustration for over a decade now (recent news on TRIPURA can be referred for details) due to lack of –> Progressive policies, Meaningful development, Best of the industries and quality professional employment opportunities, Best of the class healthcare, Proactiveness in being nationally and globally competitive.

    Does anyone know why capital AGARTALA is not yet even an inch near to a tier-2 city like PUNE ?

    Does anyone know what TRIPURA have achieved (in terms of giving its educated youth much needed professional career opportunities at par with other progressive states) till date by focusing only on natural resource (rubber, bamboo, plastic) based industry, which in progressive states (e.g. Karnataka, Maharashtra) is considered as intermediary industry, while IT and High Tech industry (in Software Export) are the prime economy drivers !!

    Does anyone know why poor and lesser educated people are still not able to live a life with self dignity – at par with those in other progressive states (e.g. An Healthcare firm or IT MNC firm not only employs Doctors, Engineers, Managers and other graduates – alongwith them there are many other supporting and maintanance staffs who get due trainigs, well paid and can make their own career as well !!).

    Does any one know HOW LONG (and WHY) people of TRIPURA (Youths especially) have to languish in backwardness when rest of the progressive states are vying for attention from top IT MNCs and High Tech firms to set up their base ??

    If tier 2 cities like PUNE, GURGAON can achieve same through right mix of people, policies, push and willingness to embrace technology and competition – why can’t AGARTALA ??

    Hope much needed ECONOMIC VIBRANCY (like Bangalore, Mumbai, Gurgaon, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad) is created in AGARTALA (to emerge as new SMART CYBER CITY of India!) with best of the policies and setting up of World Class Infrastructures.

    Really hope leadership in CENTER, TRIPURA Govt and Other Concerned DIGNITARIES takes a FUTURISTIC and PROGRESSIVE approach and goes BIG to put TRIPURA into national & international scheme of things and strives hard in making AGARTALA into an world class city signifying uprising India’s growing prowess!

    We really need to move forward by developing TRIPURA with world class infrastructures and bring it at par with best of the other Indian states in the shortest possible time!

    Yes – we do have logistical issues in terms of connectivity,tough terrains – which slowly but surely being overcomed with multiple links opening up through Bangladesh,Myanmar!

    Appreciating TRIPURA Govt and Center on the development works so far,would request to set higher goals and aim to make TRIPURA the new face of emerging India!

    Some of the very important issues plauging TRIPURA badly:

    1.INDUSTRY – Not a single High Tech corporate, Big MNCs – especially economy driving Service Sector (from IT, High Tech – source of higher disposable income – source of thriving economy) have a presence in TRIPURA – Need of the hour (with major connectivity projects on and due for completion in next 1-2 years) is to have many of these companies (e.g. IBM,Accenture,TCS, Infosys, Wipro,HCL,Cognizant, Tech Mahindra) set up Delivery & Consultancy centers (by facilitating them with setting up of necessary IT zones / parks – in the line of ITPL Bangalore, Electronics City Bangalore, HITEC Hyderabad, Rajiv Gandhi Infotech Park Hinjawadi Pune, DLF IT Park Chennai – with due URGENCY) – Which is a must to open up window of professional opportunities (and mass employment) for bright (More than 6 lakhs UNEMPLOYED !!) youths of the state. TRIPURA is also home to massive talent pool with combination of huge number of working professionals (working in other Metros and abroad currently), local educated youths, youths (and working professionals) from neighboring NORTHEAST states and legal working professionals from Bangladesh and Neighboring countries! At the same time geographical proximity of AGARTALA to important BANGLADESH cities (and subsequently to other SE Asian countries) gives ample business opportunities for IT Majors to expand their client base across industrial domains (e.g. Digital Bangladesh project being envisaged by Bangladesh Govt).

    2.LIFESTYLE – Not a single world class 5 star hotel (Taj, Leela, Oberoi, ITC), World class shopping mall (Phoenix Market city Mumbai, LuLu International Shopping Mall Kochi, Mantri Square mall Bangalore), multiplexes (PVR, Big Cinemas, INOX) , World class Retail chains (Walmart, IKEA, Pantaloons,Shoppers Stop, Croma, Reliance Retail etc) exists in TRIPURA – Need of the hour is to have many and which is a must for a better and modern lifestyle for both people of State as well as thousands of (domestic and international) tourists arriving in the state.

    3.EDUCATION – Not a single higher education institute of national importance (IIM, IIT, IISc, AIIMS, Symbiosis management institutes, Xavier management institutes etc …) exists in TRIPURA – Need of the hour is to have many (given the fact that a huge number of students from TRIPURA migrates to other states for pursuing Engineering, Medical and Management from best of the institutes) which is a must to bring youths at par to the ones in other part of India !! This will also help best of the brains from other parts of INDIA to know NORTHEAST (TRIPURA in particular) better!

    4.HEALTHCARE – Not a single HOSPITAL of national importance (in terms of professionalism , proven quality and trusted brand) exists in TRIPURA which is a must for those helpless people of state who has to run around and rush to Chennai and other cities for treatment even during those critical hours of life! – Need of the hour is to go PROACTIVE and INVITE best of the brands available (e.g AIIMS, FORTIS, APPOLO, MANIPAL Hospitals) to set up their HOSPITAL CHAINS at AGARTALA, at the same time highlighting enormous business opportunities they can derive from Medical Tourism Market comprising of Tourists coming from other Northeast states, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Nepal, Bhutan and other Neighboring countries.

    5.RAIL – Really hope TRIPURA gets connected to Trans-Asian Railway (TAR) Network with individual lines to MYANMAR and BANGLADESH – in the earliest possible time. Given the huge prospect of being a important Rail hub (catering to domestic and international traffic) connecting NORTHEAST to SE Asia and further to Europe, Hope AGARTALA rail station gets transformed into a world class Rail station (with best of the technologies, equipments, infrastructure and amenities) in the line of Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (Maharashtra) and Chennai Central station (Tamil Nadu). Also, need of the hour is to have a seamless Rail connectivity between all the NE capitals (Mumbai-Chennai like network need to be put in place for people to move across NORTHEAST easily without any hassles/security issues). Does anyone know when first High Speed Train will arrive in TRIPURA ?

    6.CITY TRANSPORT – Not the best of the Road Infrastructure and City Transport System is in place in AGARTALA! Need of the hour is to have world class technology (e.g. GPRS enabled systems) and equipments embedded in ROADS (e.g. Digital Sign boards, CCTV cameras, Automatic Traffic Signal Control System etc.) and PUBLIC TRANSPORT VEHICLES (e.g. High Tech VOLVO AC and Non-AC Buses, Double-decker Buses) ; and install a organized process (e.g. Daily, Monthly and Yearly Passes, Dress code for Bus operators) in place – with something like Ahmedabad Bus Rapid Transit system, Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation, Delhi Integrated Multi-Modal Transit System! Does anyone know when AGARTALA METRO will be flagged off ?

    7.AIRPORT – Really hope AAI comes up with an world class international terminal (in the line of Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore , Mumbai Airports) in AGARTALA with modern technology, infrastructure, equipments and best of the amenities! With growing economic linkage between INDIA and other ASEAN countries (latest being PM’s visit to Japan and Thailand) as part of INDIA’s ACT-EAST POLICY,it hardly leaves any room for imagination – the role AGARTALA going to play in near future being the hub of international trade. And SMOOTH and AROMATIC flow of INTERNATIONAL and DOMESTIC travelers (includes businessman, tourists, patients, students) will hold key to fully realize potential of ACT-EAST policy envisioned by INDIA’s leadership.

    8.WATER Ways – TRIPURA Rivers are connected to Rivers in Bangladesh. Need of the hour is to transform TRIPURA rivers into national waterways, set up World Class Inland ports (in the line of Kaladan Multi-modal Transit Transport Project) and connect them to Bangladesh River and Sea ports, which would ease TRIPURA’s landlockedness to a significant extent and improve Supply Chain and Logistical delivery of goods and services!

    9.HIGHWAY – Hope AGARTALA gets incorporated to have seamless access to SE Asia connectivity points (India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway and Kaladan Multi-modal Transit). Also Need of the hour is to have Multi-lane express highway (in the line of Mumbai-Pune expressway, Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway) connectivity among all NE capitals. Can there be a Express Highway (via DHAKA) connecting AGARTALA and KOLKATA ?

    10.BUSINESS MEET – Not a single Global Investor Meet organised yet in AGARTALA (whereas in Karnataka, Gujarat and even Chattisgarh these are almost frequent affairs – Recent one being PUNJAB getting thousands of crores of investment out of a Investor Summit !!). Need of the hour is organize such event which would surely put TRIPURA in global map and radar of world class corporates!

    11.SPORTS – Not a single International stadium exists in AGARTALA to hold national and international level football and cricket tournaments (ODI, T20, Test matches, IPL, ISL, Challengers League etc) !!! Need of the hour is to set up an World Class International stadium with latest technology, infrastructure, equipments and best of the amenities (to the level of Eden Gardens Stadium, M Chinnaswamy Stadium, M. A. Chidambaram Stadium) to facilitate football and cricket crazy fans of TRIPURA (2nd Populous NE state!!), fans from neighboring NE states and neighboring countries of Bangladesh & Myanmar, budding cricketers and footballers from NORTHEAST to watch their favorite STARS in action !! This would also be a huge boost to Tourism, Relationship build up with neighboring countries, Opening up of many other avenues in industry starved NORTHEAST TRIPURA! For an instance, even though INDIA will be hosting 2017 U-17 FIFA world cup, there seems to be no chance of having few matches played in TRIPURA – though that would be the nicest thing to bring WORLD much closer to NORTHEAST TRIPURA !! Does anyone know when first international cricket match will be played in AGARTALA ?

    12.ECONOMIC ZONE – Really hope AGARTALA gets incorporated in the proposed BCIM (Bangladesh, China, India, Myanmar) corridor project and BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) project. Having close geographical proximity with important cities like DHAKA and CHITTAGONG will surely help TRIPURA leverage it’s strategic location of being India’s Gateway to SOUTHEAST ASIA! Also there is a urgent need to build economic and industrial corridors connecting all NE capitals to leverage economic potential between Northeast India and Southeast Asia. Does anyone know when a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) will come up in AGARTALA?

    13.TOURISM – There seems to be no concerted approach in Branding and Marketing TRIPURA TOURISM with a wider internet reach through Social Media network, Top travel and hospitality web sites (in the line of Maharashta Tourism, Tamilnadu Tourism, Uttar Pradesh Tourism, Kerala Tourism, Goa Tourism) even though there is a huge scope for TRIPURA in both National and International Tourism Market. Also hilly terrains can be transformed into a major hub for Adventure Tourism (in the line of Ladakh) in addition to existing eco, cultural and religious Tourism.

    14.TECHNOLOGY – There seems to be no approach in promoting and using modern technologies e.g. Internet Of Things (Combination of Physical things, Sensors, Internet, Cloud, Big Data and Real time Analytics) – which allows to overcome day to day challenges and enhance quality of public life (e.g. Wireless sensors on Bridges and Buildings for precaution against earthquake and natural disaster; Smart farms to improve Agriculture productivity; Effective Monitoring of Healthcare for patients; Managing Rivers, lakes and flood situations; Managing Traffic Congestion; Managing Air Polution; Managing Forest Degradation; Maintaining Roads and Highways; Monitoring Goods Transportation; Monitoring vehicle speed and preventing Road Accidents).

    15.SMART CITY – Hope AGARTALA gets incorporated in the SMART CITY project envisaged by NDA Govt.

    16.ENTREPRENEURSHIP – Does anyone know why there is no notable start up (like RedBus, Snapdeal, Flipkart) yet from TRIPURA ?

    17.NRI – There seems to be no approach to involve NRIs from TRIPURA to come up with ideas, investment for rapid economic growth of TRIPURA – whereas Karnataka, Tamilnadu have seen major contributions from NRIs.

    Also urgent need of the hour is to complete all the existing infrastructure projects as soon as possible and identification and sanctioning of all other infrastructure projects fulfilling above infrastructure gaps without any further delay!!

    Anything less than ‘WORLD CLASS’ would only defeat the very purpose behind infrastructure development of TRIPURA under ACT-EAST Policy!!

    IMPOSSIBLE – just means I AM POSSIBLE! If India need to catch up with developed part of the world,the most strategically placed Northeast (especially TRIPURA) need to be made into a developed region in the shortest possible time!

    I strongly believe TRIPURA govt (in close co-ordination with Center, other concerned dignitaries & all corporate vissionaries) can certainly achieve this sooner rather than late, which would definitely give its people a better employment opportunities, a better healthcare, a better access to quality education, a quality lifestyle, and last but not the least a confident and connected TRIPURA leading India’s charge towards contributing to a more stable and stronger global economy!!