Closing India’s Technology Gap

It is a notable irony that India, which produces solutions to many of the knottiest information-technology problems faced by the world’s largest companies, has benefited little from technological progress. Fortunately for India’s citizens, Prime Minister Narendra Modi intends to change that.

MUMBAI – It is a notable irony that India, which produces solutions to many of the knottiest information-technology problems faced by the world’s largest companies, has benefited little from technological progress. Fortunately for India’s citizens, Prime Minister Narendra Modi intends to change that.

The gap between India and its emerging Asian counterpart China is significant. Whereas China has created the world’s largest online bazaar and become a global leader in renewable energy, India has just begun to explore the potential of e-commerce; IT remains beyond the scope of millions of small and medium-size enterprises; and most citizens remain cut off from the digital economy.

To bring India up to speed, Modi’s government announced in August a national digital initiative: 1.13 trillion rupees ($19 billion) in investment to bring broadband communications to 250,000 villages, provide universal mobile access, expand online government services, and enable online delivery of all sorts of basic services. Needless to say, this will do much to advance India’s e-government ambitions.

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