Supporters as well as critics of ModiNomics agree that the target of $5 trillion economy is challenging but achievable. The issue is not just about achieving the target of a particular size of the economy. It's a wider issue of how do we achieve it and in the process what happens to the critical challenges that the country faces like poverty, inequality and jobs. The road to $5 trillion economy should be used to create a highway for reaching the next level of expansion, say $10 trillion and $20 trillion in a particular time-frame. Towards the end of 2018, India 2030: A Socio-Economic Paradigm book, published by SKOCH Group, pitched for $10 trillion target by 2030.
In today's interconnected world data is the lifeline of any economy. Free-flow of data across the world has made it easier for a person sitting in one part of the world to access the data in any other part of the world. This has made it easier for any business to expand its reach at a global level. However, the importance and use of data does not stop at connecting the individuals and the businesses. Business worth trillions of dollar is done annually where the primary input is data. Five most valuable listed firms in the world - Apple, Amazon, Alphabet (Google's parent company), Microsoft and Facebook - deal primarily in data.
There's consensus now across the political and ideological divide that even in the high- growth years, a large section of the population was not receiving the dividends of the progress India has made. There are a number of deeply-entrenched factors because of which every Indian has not been able to benefit from the GDP growth India has seen in the last two and a half decades post-liberalisation in 1991.
Sometime back Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced an ambitious target of 175 GW by 2022 for renewable energy. India has a low consumption of energy and will need to increase it several fold in the coming decades. With the global community working on reducing carbon footprint and the commitment of each nation being already in public domain with the international community as Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC), the pressures for improving energy efficiency and increasing share of non-fossil fuel generation has become more intense.
Professing Indianness has taken media spending to a new high and journalistic ethics to a new low. There are marketing as well as editorial solutions to 'nationality laundering'. A Chinese company of yesterday becomes an Indian company of today by simply advertising so. Uber CEO is happy to take on Indian nationality alongwith Indian Guest Editorship.
The Indian economy is largely dependent on cash. Only 5 per cent of the country's personal consumption expenditure is done electronically. A sharp acceleration of economic growth is not possible with such kind of dependence on cash. Overdependence on cash is a major hurdle and a radical thinking and coordinated efforts are needed to take electronic payments system to the masses.
The Indian economy is predominantly cash-driven with only 5 per cent of the country's Personal Consumption Expenditure done electronically. This shows that there is a huge unexplored market for payment companies. It will require all players across the payments value chain to create much greater innovation in payment services.
I appreciate that the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) has announced the "Policy on Adoption of Open Source Software for Government of India" and also brought out the policy framework for rapid and effective adoption.