Foreign direct investment in the telecom sector rose to USD 10 billion during the first eight months of 2016-17 helped by policy reforms, Telecom Secretary J S Deepak said on Wednesday.
Foreign direct investment (FDI) is an investment made by a company or individual in one country in business interests in another country.
“FDI was USD 1.3 billion in 2013-14, USD 2.9 billion in 2014-15, and USD 1.3 billion in 2015-16 ... has jumped to USD 10 billion, a 6-7 fold increase, in the first eight months of 2016-17,” Deepak said at an event on e-Governance and Digital India organised by Assocham.
He added that FDI statistics were “resounding acknowledgement” of reforms undertaken in the telecom sector including spectrum harmonisation, spectrum trading and sharing, transparent allocation of airwaves through auctions, Right of Way rules and eKYC guidelines.
“The entire government is committed to fundamental reforms like GST and decision of demonetisation of currency and many others for ease of doing business. In telecom sector, we have tried to facilitate industry by a host of spectrum management reforms, the right of way rules which makes it easier to set up telecom infrastructure by making decisions on applications transparent and time bound, as well as eKYC for acquisition of customers,” he said.
Deepak said in the next stage of reforms, the focus would be more on areas of partnership with industry on implementation of initiatives.
“The Bharat Net strategy for the second phase and thereafter will look at these kinds of reforms which we hope we will be able to showcase before the financial year ends,” he pointed out.