Leveraging 5G opportunities needs shift in focus: CUTS round-table

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NITI Aayog Additional Secretary Yaduvendra Mathur has favoured evidence – based practical approach and policy for the country to shift from manufacturing to designing in the ICT sector.

Speaking at CUTS International’s Roundtable in Delhi on “Design in India to maximise 5G opportunities”, Mr Mathur said India needs to get out of the capture of the past approaches wherein policies were drafted and then practiced on the ground.

He said evidence-based policy making requires collection and management of on- ground data which then feeds into the policy framework to make it effective. He emphasised that evidence based policy making is crucial for devising optimal regulations and sub-optimal regulatory provisions can kill innovation and start-ups.

Participating in the discussion, C-DOT Executive Director Vipin Tyagi while reinforced this view said that policy making needs to catch-up with rapidly advancing technology. He further stated that for India to increase its global competitiveness in the evolving digital space, core innovation through Research and Development (R&D) needs to be encouraged.

This would require investments, market access for start-ups and generation of fundamental innovation capabilities. To that end, commercialization of Intellectual Property Rights and subsequent protection will play a key role. Moreover, ensuring security and safety are fundamental to the success of the technologies of the future.

Furthermore, highlighting the opportunity that 5G posses, CUTS International Secretary General Pradeep S Mehta stated that it is imperative for India to invest in ‘innovation’, if it wants to reap maximum benefits from the upcoming 5G-ecosystem.

Consequently the focus needs to be enlarged from ‘Make in India’ to ‘Design in India’. Former Finance Secretary and Chairman of the CUTS Institute for Regulation and Competition Arvind Mayaram, stressed upon four critical areas for leveraging the 5G opportunity that included policy to map out India’s vision, regulation to determine how fast we grow, finance to support high-risk research and innovation and market that will determine India’s ability to support the emergence of new age markets.

The round-table also saw the release of two research reports namely Standards Development and the 5G opportunity by CUTS International and Linkages between IP Protection and Start-ups in India by CUTS Institute for Regulation and Competition (CIRC).

The Round-table witnessed detailed discussions on the way forward for India to move up the global value chain from ‘manufacturing’ of ICT equipment like mobile phones to ‘designing’ of such equipment, in the context of 5G ecosystem.

J P GUPTA for SG

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