Ministry of Communications
azadi ka amrit mahotsav

 India celebrates its International collaborations on World Telecommunication and Information Society Day

Telecom diplomacy brings dividends

Posted On: 16 MAY 2024 6:56PM by PIB Delhi

On the eve of World Telecommunication and Information Society Day, India proudly celebrates its extraordinary digital journey of empowering its citizens and assuming global leadership.

The Indian telecom sector has witnessed significant developments in recent years, setting the stage for a transformative era. Driven by unprecedented data consumption, a vast user base, and a policy-friendly environment, India continues to foster industry growth and start-up innovation. Today India has 99% coverage footprint in 4G with over 6 lakh villages covered in 4G and around 4.42 lakh 5G BTS.

The DoT is also establishing strategic international partnerships and collaborations to build a world-class telecom ecosystem to enhance global connectivity and position India as a global leader in digital innovation and infrastructure. Telecom Diplomacy has helped attracting new business ventures, forge partnerships with global leaders, nurture domestic startups, demonstrate India's commitment to driving innovation and securing its leadership position in the global telecommunications landscape. The telecom diplomacy has been focussed on outcomes and many green shoots are visible.

Strategic Partnerships with partner countries and Telecom chip companies:

India’s engaged with partner countries, telecom chip companies and tech giants to forge strategic partnerships. During the visits in Sept 23 and Jan 24 to the USA, the 'US-India OpenRAN Acceleration Roadmap’ was formalised to foster Open RAN adoption and mutual trust for trusted suppliers. Discussion on mutual recognition of security frameworks to improve ease of doing business and instil user confidence progressed considerably. Partnerships with tech companies like Qualcomm resulted in finalising the MOU for access to chips for startups through C-DOT. Similar efforts with Intel and AMD will provide mentorship to Indian startups. Support to 100 5G labs for developing use cases was also secured during the visits to Mobile World Congress(MWC) Barcelona in Feb 24 and USA.

Exchange of Best Practices:

Collaboration with the FCC and NSF of USA enabled India to start dialogue on international best practices in spectrum allocation, quality of service assurance, and future tech research. The RINGS programme of NSF has the potential to enhance effective collaboration of industry, academia and Government R&D and is a good model that has led to discussions with Indian industry on similar lines. The response has been enthusiastic.

Creating New Opportunities:

India showcased CDoT's solutions, especially the Cell broadcast and the QKD solutions to the World Bank and Mauritius, indicating potential deployment in other countries during visit to USA in September 2023.

India was successful at the World Radio Conference, held at Dubai in Dec 23, to secure benefits for India's telecom and space sectors through the following decisions:

  • Use of 6 GHZ mid-band spectrum for IMT was negotiated to be used after 2027

· Ensuring that Indian NAVIC - GPS system is protected from the other operators in the region.

· Ensuring Indian defence operations (4.8-4.94 GHz) from neighbouring countries IMT deployment in sea/air

· Agreeing for frequencies for deploying HIBS (High Altitude IMT base stations)

  • Inflight internet connectivity in new high frequency bands for better experience permitted for India

Increasing Telecom Exports:

The gap between imports and exports has decreased in recent years. Most of the 5G demands are being met from Made in India. Indian companies have exported Rs 25200 crores worth of telecom equipment and accessories last year. DoT has taken concerted efforts to help our domestic companies showcase their domestic products in all foreign fora so that these can be exported. Many of our domestic companies such as Tejas Networks, Lekha Wireless and VVDN, the PLI beneficiaries and Astrome, WiSig, Signalchip, who are DCIS beneficiaries, were part of various MWC delegations, and they were able to open doors for new deals. They are exporting and setting their foot in western nations – in particular USA. Astrome is exporting E Band technology for 50bn Rural backhaul program. WiSig ORAN network is under test at Virginia University. VVDN has setup offices at 3 location in USA – Vermont, Austin and NY and is already serving clients like CISCO, Maveneir and TESLA. Further, 31 startups participated in MWC USA and Spain and developed business leads for around $100mn.

Securing Indian Interests and leadership positions in international forums:

India's active participation at the World Radio Conference resulted in safeguarding spectrum for Indian operations in airspace and sea from other country IMT operations and enabling future 5G deployments.

Secretary (T) was elected as co-chair of the ITU Digital Innovation Board in March 24 which has enhanced its role in shaping global digital innovation.

Collaboration with partner nations and international bodies such as ITU, APT is crucial for India’s Telecom growth as telecom sector/company can be benefited from the technology, patents, contributions to ITU, SEPs. India through Bharat 6G Alliance is entering into a Memorandum of Understanding with NextG Alliance of ATIS, USA and 6G Smart Networks and Services Industry Association (6G-IA) of EU to explore collaboration opportunities on 6G wireless technologies, support a common 6G vision and creating secure and trusted telecommunications as well as resilient supply chains.

World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly (WTSA) is being held in October 2024 for the first time in India in which over 2000 delegates from 180 countries will participate and will decide the future direction of standards for next generation of telecommunication systems.

Transforming India Mobile Congress (IMC):

Significant efforts were undertaken to make IMC a global event like Mobile World Congress by 2025 that will boost India's economy by attracting international participants and investments.

Tie ups with PAN IIT USA, GSMA, IEEE, INSA have resulted in broad basing IMC 2024 into a World Class hi-tech telecom event.

Tapping Specialized Knowledge:

During the visit to USA in Jan 2024, DoT entered a MOU with PANIIT to engage with experts in Telecom from IITs for India’s projects for selection and mentoring.

This was followed by launch of the Future Tech Expert Portal which facilitates expert engagement in mentoring Indian talent and academic and research collaborations. It has now over 200 registered experts, including 72 related to IIT, 7 from PANIIT, and 10 residing abroad in countries like the UAE, USA, Canada, and the Czech Republic.

Academic and Research Collaborations:

The DoT explored potential collaborations in Quantum Networks and Quantum Teleportation with University of Chicago to elevate R&D, foster innovation, and fortify the startup ecosystem in Quantum Communications within India. A quantum teleportation link between USA and India is being explored.

The above outreach efforts have succeeded in propelling India into leadership position in international fora, improving exports, build bridges with advance countries, learning from the best practices and access to specialised knowledge from trusted partner countries.

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DK/DK/SMP



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