Expand telecom infrastructure, R&D: Economic Survey

Thursday, 28 February 2008, 08:00 Hrs
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New Delhi: Since India is one of the world's fastest growing telecom markets with a user base of 272.88 million, the sector needs to expand telecom infrastructure and research and development (R&D), said the Economic Survey for 2007-08.

"With the rapid growth of the telecom network, there is a need to further expand the telecom infrastructure and research and development (R&D). This would require infusion of funds and strengthening of the domestic telecom manufacturing sector," the annual survey presented by Finance Minister P. Chidambaram in the Lok Sabha Thursday said.

"The development of special economic zones (SEZs) facilitates better telecom services, which will help in making India a hub for telecom manufacturing."

The government has also decided to set up a Telecom Testing and Security Certification Centre (TETC) for communication security, research and monitoring, the survey said.

To hasten growth of telecom in rural areas, the government has proposed to set up 200 million telephone connections by 2010, an increase of 25 percent from the current 7.9 percent with 63.68 million rural telephone connections.

The country broadband connection also continued to remain tardy with the number of its subscribers growing to 2.80 million Dec 31, 2007, compared to 2.28 million in Mar 31 earlier in the year.

The government has set a target of 20 million broadband connections by 2010.

The sector has experienced foreign capital inflows of 207.18 billion from Aug 1991 to Jul 2007, which is 8.1 percent of the total foreign capital inflows into the country during the period, the survey said.
Source: IANS
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