We look forward to a more holistic approach towards budget 2012. Not to miss, we expect it to be progressive in terms of giving thrust to innovation and lay greater emphasis on adoption of technology in varied sectors. In today’s scenario, there is increasing deployment of IT in the growing fields of education, retail, healthcare and public safety & security. As in FY 2011, we hope to see further momentum in these sectors.
Among the most important steps undertaken by the government last year, the Union ministry had sought to develop seven cities around the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) with a total investment of about $90 billion within a decade. We anticipate that this pilot project to develop these ‘smart cities’ will enable the overall development of the country and ensure safe and secure infrastructure with an eco-friendly environment for the citizens. This project has opened doors for technology solution providers in the biometric security and surveillance domain for sustainable delivery. The biometrics market in India is expected to grow at a CAGR of 42.4 percent over the period 2010-2014*. This trend is expected to grow with more and more government projects being undertaken hence we hope that this will be a major focus area in the Union budget 2012-2013.
When we are talking about growth in CAGR, a vital subject such as green infrastructure cannot be ignored. Sustainable development and adoption of green business practices has become the cornerstone of any debate on environment. With India’s economy recording a steady growth rate, it has become even more important for sustainability to feature prominently in the country’s development plans. India has managed a good growth rate with various initiatives to combat climate change. There is no difference between development and environment. Conservation is not just about restraint but progressing in a sustainable manner. Towards this, we see a larger role being played out by corporates and government on energy savings and environment responsive implementation of technology. We are hoping government’s increased influence in the upcoming budget.
While we talk of sustainability and growth, one factor to impact the economy very strongly is proliferation and raising the standard of education in the country. With the emergence of increasingly robust connectivity infrastructure and cheaper computers, school systems around the world are developing the ability to provide learning opportunities to students “anytime, anywhere”. This trend requires a rethinking of the traditional 40 minute lesson. In addition to hardware and Internet access, it requires the availability of virtual mentors or teachers, and/or opportunities for peer to peer and self-paced, deeper learning. A few more things that we perceive will change the face of education in India would be cloud computing, ubiquitous learning, one-to-one learning to name a few. The trend in classrooms is to provide an information appliance to every learner and create learning environments that assumes universal access to technology. Whether the hardware involved a laptop, interactive devised such as a projector, a net computer, smart phone, or the re-emergence of the tablet, classrooms should prepare for the universal availability of personal learning devices. We hope to see a great role of the government in bringing about this transformation. With government funded initiatives such as Sarv Shiksha Abhiyaan, the IT sector will get a chance to implement technology services to ensure highest levels of delivery.
Another very important subject that needs the government’s attention in the upcoming Union budget is towards advanced healthcare facilities for the people. A recent healthcare study indicates, the Indian healthcare spending itself is about $30 bn and is expected to go up to $80 bn in the next 10 years. By 2020, the Indian healthcare industry is estimated to be worth $275.6 bn. As per the research, Government’s long term vision of making quality health care affordable, at least 50 per cent of country’s population should be covered by health insurance by 2020. Taking cue from this revelation, we expect the process to be expedited largely with the help of technology. Hence, an increased budgetary allocation will enable healthcare companies to invest in IT and improve upon their service efficiency.