It was announced that the STPI is in the process of opening 28 Centres of Excellence (CoE) in emerging technologies at an investment of over Rs. 400 crore.

CII India Innovation Summit 2019 Ktaka govt to draft new policy on innovation tech
Atom Summit Wednesday, August 21, 2019 - 22:55

The 15th India Innovation Summit 2019 organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), commenced in Bengaluru on Wednesday. The summit aims to create a stage for industry captains, academia technocrats, young innovators and policy makers to participate and deliberate on the nuances of innovation. The two-day summit will be a great learning platform for industry members and will give insights on the latest trends and nature of innovation carried out across sectors. 

Delivering the keynote address, Dr. E.V.  Ramana Reddy, additional chief secretary, Department of IT, Bt and S&T, Government of Karnataka, said that in order to emerge as a global power, India needs to work towards becoming an innovation economy. “Karnataka is the leader in the country to achieve this objective and it is initiatives like the CII India Innovation Summit that will help understand and highlight issues critical to achieve this aim. Bengaluru has been widely cited as one of the fastest growing technology hubs and startup capitals in the world. Bengaluru is ranked 11th Best Global Startup Ecosystem, as per the Startup Blink Startup Eco-system Rankings Report 2019, moving up from rank 21 in the year 2017. Our Department is in the process of drafting a new policy on innovation and technology with the view to address the new age challenges in regulation for innovation. We are considering innovative concepts such as regulatory sandboxes to ensure adequate legal framework for innovation is available. Our aim is to make the state a leading promoter for all emerging technologies by strengthening existing technology Centres of Excellence in areas such as Cyber Security, Data Analytics, IoT, Artificial Intelligence.”

Dr Omkar Rai, director general, Software Technology Park of India (STPI), said that India’s IT Service industry currently stands at USD 177 billion with exports amounting to USD 136 billion and the industry employs around 4.1 million people. It is the intention of the Government of India to transform the country from an IT service Industry to a product nation. The National Software Product Policy 2019 which is approved by the union cabinet aims to capitalise on the strength of India’s IT industry in order to make the country a software product nation. Currently, the global software product industry stands at USD 511 billion out of which India’s share is USD 8.1 billion. The objective is to take India to USD 80 to 90 billion by 2025.

STPI is in the process of opening 28 Centres of Excellence (CoE) in emerging technologies at an investment of more than Rs. 400 crore. Five centres of excellence are currently operational and in two years, all 28 CoEs will be operational. Emerging technologies such as AI, IoT, Medical Electronics, IoT in Agriculture, Automotive Electronics will be the focus of the CoEs.

Kris Gopalakrishnan, past president, CII & chairman, India Innovation Summit, said that the march of technology is continuous and the world has made great strides in quantum technology and artificial Intelligence. New business models are continuously emerging, and it is imperative to stay up-to-date in order to be relevant. With industry boundaries blurring, policy makers need to ensure that regulations keep up with innovation. Sandbox models may be needed to test innovation, and business models to ensure the desired outcome is achieved. India Innovation Summit is a platform to deliberate, debate and learn. Citing the current distress in the auto industry, he said it is encouraging that the government is promoting greener technologies. However, in order to successfully implement new policies, we need to adopt a holistic approach that looks at the entire ecosystem right from raw materials to finished products.

Rekha M. Menon, chairman & senior managing director, Accenture said that in India, innovation will be the main pivot for India to be a USD 5 Trillion economy. Innovation will be the cornerstone and there is no other choice. We need to be mindful that in achieving our target of a $5 trillion economy, innovation for socio-economic growth is not overlooked. In order for India to move up the global innovation index, we need to ensure that innovation is a process, a collaborative approach that involves government, academia, research and startups. 

Startups are the key in the innovation ecosystem. India now is the third largest hub for technology startups which is a positive sign. The other area to focus on is investment in R&D. India ranks 50th in R&D investment and this number must go up with participation of government, academia and private sector, she added. 

Nicole Girard, consul general, consulate general of Canada, said that India is Canada’s fastest growing trade partner and people-to-people ties continue to grow in double digits. Canada has a strong innovation partnership with India and there is a strong opportunity to explore. Both countries have phenomenal tech talent and for deeper India-Canada relations, Canada has launched an Innovation Super Cluster Initiative to propel economic growth. She enumerated five super clusters i.e. digital technology, protein industries, advance manufacturing, ocean tech and AI that will be key focus areas for Canada.

Sandeep Maini, past chairman, CII Karnataka & chairman, Maini Group, said that the summit this year, aims to deliberate on scaling up for the next decade- creating an Innovation Manifesto for the stakeholders, and nurturing the Innovation ecosystem in our country. Innovation is the prime driver of differentiation between the developed and developing nations. The asset-driven and regulation-based industries of the past era are giving way to the innovation-centric and open market, digital businesses. The vast human capital puts India at a vantage point, while making us dependent on our own ability to ideate, create, network and collaborate with other nations to deliver better results.

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