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Ambani moots 3-point plan for IT spread

BS Corporate Bureau in Mumbai | July 30, 2003 09:19 IST

India has a once in a lifetime opportunity to leapfrog and join the ranks of the developed nations in the world, this can be done by following a three-pronged strategy in information technology, Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, said.

He was speaking at the IT user awards 2003 instituted by the National Association of Software and Service Companies.

The three-pronged strategy spelled by Ambani included greater penetration of information technology, more products and services and to encourage the use of information technology.

"Connectivity costs in India are among the lowest in the world compared with being among the highest in the world a few years back. It gives India a huge advantage. Reliance Infocomm, too, is playing its part in the information technology sector. The usage of Reliance India Mobile is 30 minutes per individual per day," Ambani said.

While pleading that the Indian companies should tap the domestic market, Ambani said, "The domestic market for information technology is $6 million, while that of China is five times more. Indian companies have been largely focusing on the international market and that should change now, the idea is to make IT relevant to the common man."

He also said IT constitutes 2 per cent of the GDP and it should scaled up to 5 per cent.

Paying tribute to Nasscom, Ambani said though there were a lot of awards around, there were none for users in any field. The Nasscom IT user award has come to represent the aspirations of the Indian society in the IT industry.

Kiran Karnik, Nasscom president said: "Major global businesses across verticals have realised the efficiency and productivity benefits due to adoption of Indian IT software and services but we have not been able to fully utilise this expertise among Indian businesses. However, with the rapid deregulation sectors such as utility, energy, power, telecom and banking in India, the demand for IT products and services is increasing. This creates a win-win situation for both the IT industry and the user industry."

Som Mittal, Nasscom chairman, said: "The key motive in promoting IT usage among organisation lies in our belief that more efficient usage of IT would be a great boost to the domestic demand for the Indian IT industry in general, software and services in particular."

The IT user awards given away in various categories are: Banking -- HDFC Bank, Insurance -- LIC, Manufacturing -- Tata Steel, Information and Communication Technology -- WeP Peripherals, FMCG -- ITC Ltd, Energy and Utilities -- BPCL, Pharmaceutical -- GlaxoSmithkline Consumer Healthcare, Retail -- Shoppers' Stop, Transportation -- Indian Airlines, Education -- IIT Delhi.

The 2003 IT excellence award went to the A V Birla group.

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