· Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is a tool that has not only transformed India’s image globally, but has also fuelled its economic growth, increased ease and efficiency of people, productivity and profitability of companies, and above all, raised expectations, said experts at the Inaugural Session at the 12th ICT East in Kolkata.
· Mr Partha Chatterjee, Hon’ble Minister for Commerce and Industry, PEs, IT, Industrial Reconstruction, Parliamentary Affairs, West Bengal, said ICT occupies a special place in economic development. “It has reformed the world economy, not only as a sector but also by increasing productivity and reducing transaction costs. Moreover, it has catalysed significant changes in both living and working conditions for a vast multitude of people,” he added.
The Minister described CII as a trusted partner in the State’s pursuit to scale greater heights of progress and development. “I thank CII for all its help and recommendations for framing the West Bengal Policy on ICT 2012.”
· Mr Chatterjee listed several advantages of doing business in West Bengal. “Compared to other metropolitan cities in India, Kolkata has a lower cost of operating a business. The other cities in West Bengal are far more cost effective,” he said.
“Moreover, West Bengal’s strength lies in a rich talent pool and growing infrastructure. The CPI (consumer price index) for urban and non-manual workers in West Bengal is still among the lowest compared to cities such as Hyderabad, Pune Bangalore, etc,” he added.
· Mr S Gopalakrishnan, President, CII, and Executive Co-Chairman, Infosys Ltd, said technology will continue to play an important role in meeting the evolving needs of Indian consumers. “It is imperative that end user industries re-align their business models and invest in new technologies to provide innovative value propositions to their consumers,” he added.
India's IT industry grew from 150 million US$ in 1990-1991 to a whopping 85 billion US$ in 2010-11. In the past ten years, the IT industry in India has grown at an average annual rate of 30%.
“The liberalisation of the Indian economy in the early 1990w contributed significantly to the growth of the IT industry. Deregulation policies adopted by the Government resulted in substantial domestic investment and inflow of foreign capital,” the CII President said.
· Mr Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII, explained what CII is doing to promote the sector. “CII recognises the economic and social importance of this sector and has been given prime focus towards development of the ICT Sector. The key focus areas pursued by CII under the expert advice and guidance of these committees include IT enablement of Indian Industry,” he said.
· Early this year, CII and BCG jointly published a report on the IT enablement of Indian Industry listing several opportunities and challenges and also defining the roles of stakeholders. According Mr Banerjee, ICT adoption by MSMEs will greatly enhance competitiveness.
· Earlier in his welcome address, Mr Sudhir Deoras, Chairman, CII Eastern Region, and Managing Director, TRF Ltd, said, “CII Eastern Region has always put a special thrust on developing the ICT sector in the region. We worked closely with the Government of West Bengal in preparing its IT policy. We are also working on facilitating creation of IT Policy in Odisha. Our outbound business missions always have a special focus on ICT.”
· Mr Bhaskar Pramanik, Co Chairman, CII National Committee on IT & ITES, and Chairman, Microsoft India, said West Bengal has been strong supporter of ICT. He explained how the IT industry gives a cutting edge. “Many Indian IT companies are global brand names. They have brought international fame, created jobs and, most importantly, given an aura of self-belief which was hitherto missing from Indian psyche, he said. “It’s already a 100-billion dollar industry. Even in these times of volatility, it has the potential to accelerate and contribute substantially to the GDP,” he added.
· Dr Omkar Rai, Director General, Software Technology Parks of India, said not only does ICT adoption provide transparency in the services rendered by the Government, it has enormous impacts on the social sector as well – in school education, vocational training institutes, etc.
· Mr S Radhakrishnan, Chairman, CII Eastern Region ICTE Subcommittee, and Managing Director, Descon Limited, delivered the Vote of Thanks.
· Also present at the Inaugural Session was Dr Saugat Mukherjee, Regional Director, CII Eastern Region.
· A report titled “CII-PwC Report on Information and Technology Sector in West Bengal” was unveiled during the Inaugural Session of ICT East 2013.
With mobile devices/ tablets eating into enterprise desktop market, the use of social collaborative networks in business has spiralled upwards with the power passing from the corporation to the people. Such trends have opened up new avenues for monetization in the social computing platforms, digital content management and digital identity management on the one hand, and on the other hand, in the enterprise mobility sphere like BYOD, Mobile Device Management, Desktop virtualization and mobile middleware.
As far as networks and infrastructure are concerned, companies are focused on catching up with the frenetic pace of digitization, and are giving increased preference to cloud services over traditional, self owned or managed infrastructure/application services, be it SaaS, PaaS or IaaS. This has resulted in new monetizing routes for traditional managed infra service providers and also is moving towards increased cloud-based integration offerings. Many companies are going in for multiple cloud environments, and these need interface development and data translation between various cloud services. Other trends like adoption of Big Data, are setting off requirements like data architecture design, database redesign (column oriented) and others.
All these are making customers much more demanding than what they were even a couple of years back. Smartphones, mobiles, location aware services, deployment of systems from memory to render at light speed demands extra thinking from ICT and is pressurizing to think differently. ICT needs to cope up with this and to devise a strategy to deliver the best.
The new trend is also helping the MSMEs and small businessmen to utilize ICT at the fullest extent and to benefit out of the emerging trends.
This is removing the digital divide very fast. Mobile solutions are reaching to mass much faster than any other means the ICT companies used in last decade. New thinking needs to set in to monetize the trend.
It is very important for the ICT community to do proper talent building and innovation management to ride the wave and sail through it. The emerging trends are not only supporting increasing top line but also helping to do cost optimization to make the bottom line healthy.
Against this backdrop Confederation of Indian Industry, Eastern Region organised the 12th edition of ICT East on 6 – 7 August 2013 at ITC Sonar, Kolkata. The central theme of the two day conference was “Managing Business better through Emerging ICT”.
Leading industry experts & key government officials from across the country shared their views on the adoption of emerging technologies, new business models, best practices and case studies between key user industries and the IT industry. The two-day conference focused on interactive participation for effective deliberations between user enterprises and the ICT industry on how to enhance productivity, profitability and competitiveness through ICT adoption.
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