Weekly News Updates- Jun 5 – June 11

MeitY policy momentum to persist; 3 lakh trained workers would be required in India for the semiconductor industry by 2027; In accordance with India's chipmaking policy, Zoho has requested sops; Canon is in discussions to offer chip-making machines; AI and data protection at the top of tech's wish list for the next govt; Big bets by Asus on the Indian PC market

MeitY policy momentum to persist, with Ashwini Vaishnaw holding onto electronics and IT portfolio

The technology industry expressed optimism with Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw retaining the Electronics and IT Ministry, anticipating continuity in policy making and governance to drive growth and investor confidence. Vaishnaw, who took charge as the Minister of Electronics and IT, Railways, and Information and Broadcasting on Tuesday morning, is seen as pivotal for shaping the future of electronics product design and manufacturing in India. IT industry stalwart Ajai Chowdhry emphasized the importance of the next five years in competing with China and establishing India as a global electronics hub, calling for collaborative action to redefine India’s manufacturing landscape. Industry leaders look forward to closely engaging with Vaishnaw and the newly appointed Minister of State to drive this transformation.

The decision to retain key portfolios with existing ministers has been positively received by industry figures like ICEA Chairman Pankaj Mohindroo, who underscored the importance of continuity for investor confidence and growth. He noted that the industry is prepared for a transformative journey towards making India a global hub for electronics manufacturing by 2030. IESA Chairman V Veerappan praised Vaishnaw for his role in boosting semiconductor and electronics manufacturing, expressing confidence that his continued leadership and new perspectives from MoS Jitin Prasada will foster economic growth and job creation. Vaishnaw, upon taking charge, committed to leveraging technology and digital solutions to enhance the lives of people, building on past momentum in the sector.


Editor’s Note: Industry leaders and stakeholders in the technology sector have expressed optimism as Ashwini Vaishnaw retains the Electronics and IT Ministry, emphasizing continuity in policy-making and governance. Vaishnaw’s commitment to leveraging technology and digital solutions is seen as pivotal in driving growth and establishing India as a global hub for electronics manufacturing by 2030. With support from industry figures and stakeholders, there is anticipation of collaborative efforts under Vaishnaw’s leadership to enhance India’s position in electronics and IT on the global stage.

3 lakh trained workers would be required in India for the semiconductor industry by 2027

The Indian semiconductor industry will need 2.5 to 3 lakh skilled professionals by 2027, as reported by IANS citing a TeamLease Degree Apprenticeship report. The industry is projected to become a $100 billion market by 2030, potentially generating around 1 million global jobs by 2025-26. To address skill shortages, the Electronics Sector Skill Council offers over 25 apprenticeship courses under the National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme.

The TeamLease Degree Apprenticeship is working with academia, industry leaders, and government bodies to tackle these challenges. Additionally, the PLI Scheme provides a $1.7 billion incentive package to encourage semiconductor manufacturing in India.


Editor’s Note: The Indian semiconductor industry is set to require 2.5 to 3 lakh skilled workers by 2027, aiming to meet the demands of its projected $100 billion market by 2030. Efforts by organizations like TeamLease and the Electronics Sector Skill Council, supported by government initiatives such as the PLI Scheme, are focused on training and apprenticeships to address these workforce needs and foster industry growth.

In accordance with India’s chipmaking policy, Zoho has requested sops: Vembu

Zoho, aiming to boost India’s semiconductor ambitions, has applied to set up a semiconductor manufacturing facility with a partner, aligning with India’s incentive plan. Co-founder Sridhar Vembu highlighted the stringent evaluation process. Zoho plans a $700 million investment, joining other companies vying for government incentives in the growing semiconductor space. Currently, India has four approved semiconductor plants.

Additionally, Vembu criticized global tech layoffs for short-term profits, emphasizing loyalty to employees. Zoho is establishing a manufacturing facility in Tamil Nadu to create rural jobs and reduce migration, focusing on producing handheld tools and offering good wages to local youth.


Canon is in discussions to offer chip-making machines with global and Indian players

Canon Inc. is in discussions with Indian and global companies, including the Tata Group and Powerchip Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp (PSMC), to provide semiconductor lithography equipment, competing with industry leader ASML. Canon’s president and CEO, Manabu Yamazaki, confirmed the early-stage talks with firms committed to building semiconductor fabrication units in India and those expanding electronics manufacturing. Canon has developed a range of semiconductor lithography equipment designed for various applications, capable of producing circuits at a 5-nanometer scale with potential advancements to 2nm production.

In addition to its semiconductor ambitions, Canon has launched a new subsidiary, Canon Medical Systems India, in Gurugram, to address the growing demand for medical equipment such as CT scanners, MRI machines, and ultrasound systems. The company plans to expand into key markets including Chennai, Hyderabad, and Mumbai, and aims to contribute 30% of its revenue to the Asia business (excluding Japan) by 2035. Recognizing India as a crucial market, Canon also seeks to penetrate tier 2 and tier 3 cities with its imaging, printing, and surveillance products while offering a comprehensive range of semiconductor and flat panel display lithography equipment.

Editor’s Note: Canon Inc. is actively engaging with global and Indian companies, including the Tata Group and Powerchip Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp, to supply semiconductor lithography equipment amid discussions of expanding semiconductor fabrication in India. Canon’s advanced lithography technology, capable of producing circuits as small as 5 nanometers with future potential for 2nm, positions it as a competitor to industry leader ASML in the semiconductor equipment sector. Concurrently, Canon is expanding its presence in India with the launch of Canon Medical Systems India in Gurugram, aiming to meet the rising demand for medical imaging equipment across key Indian markets.

AI and data protection at the top of tech’s wish list for the next govt

Technology policy experts emphasize that notifying the Digital Personal Data Protection (DPDP) Rules should be a top priority for the new government. The DPDP Act, notified in August last year, has remained inactive for nine months due to the absence of enforcement rules, according to technology policy lawyers and think tanks. The Digital India Bill (DIB) also requires urgent attention as it aims to replace the Information Technology (IT) Act of 2000 and address intermediary liability, fake news, deep fake content, and AI regulation. Rahul Matthan of Trilegal law firm and Avimukt Dar of IndusLaw highlight the importance of notifying the DPDP rules within the first 100 days to ensure effective implementation.

Aparajita Bharti from The Quantum Hub Consulting anticipates the DPDP rules will open for consultation soon, given it has been ten months since the Act was passed. Nehaa Chaudhari of Ikigai Law notes that digital businesses have been preparing since the Act’s passage, but the detailed rules are crucial for understanding the law’s specifics. Ashish Aggarwal of Nasscom adds that India’s IT services and technology startup ecosystem have thrived under policies enhancing consumer trust and innovation. The DPDP Act is expected to continue this trend, with final rules anticipated later this year.


Editor’s Note: Technology policy experts are urging the new government to prioritize the notification of the Digital Personal Data Protection (DPDP) Rules, which have been pending enforcement for nine months since the DPDP Act was passed. The rules are seen as crucial for regulating AI, protecting data, and addressing issues like intermediary liability and fake news under the proposed Digital India Bill. Stakeholders emphasize that timely implementation of these regulations will be pivotal in shaping India’s digital ecosystem and fostering trust among consumers and businesses alike.

Big bets by Asus on the Indian PC market

Senior officials from Taiwanese tech giant Asus have highlighted the significant growth potential in India’s personal computer (PC) market, citing the country’s low PC penetration levels as a prime opportunity. Arnold Su, Asus India’s vice president for consumer and gaming PCs, pointed out that with only 10 to 11 percent of Indian households owning a PC, approximately 90 percent of households remain untapped. This considerable gap represents a vast market for Asus to expand into. Su emphasized Asus’s commitment to the Indian market, noting that the company has already established a presence in 450 out of India’s 750 districts and continues to invest in making its products widely available across the country. This strategic expansion is aimed at capitalizing on the untapped potential and fostering growth in a market that remains largely underserved in terms of PC penetration.

Despite global challenges in the PC market, Asus remains optimistic about the Indian market’s resilience and growth prospects. Peter Chang, general manager for Asus’s Asia Pacific System Business Unit, noted that while the global PC demand has not fully recovered post-COVID pandemic, the interest in purchasing laptops in India has surged this year, signaling a potential return to normalcy in the market. Chang asserted that India’s PC market is performing better than the global average, despite recent declines reported by market research firm IDC. According to IDC, PC shipments in India fell by about 30 percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2023. Nevertheless, Chang expressed confidence in the long-term prospects, highlighting the importance of artificial intelligence as a focal point for Asus’s future development. Additionally, Chang mentioned Asus’s participation in India’s IT hardware production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme and the commencement of local manufacturing, indicating the company’s ongoing commitment to investing in and expanding its footprint in India. He also confirmed that supply chain disruptions have largely been resolved, facilitating a smoother operational environment for the industry.


Editor’s Note: Asus is making substantial investments in India’s PC market, capitalizing on the country’s low PC penetration rate and significant untapped potential. With a focus on expanding its presence across districts and leveraging local manufacturing under India’s PLI scheme, Asus aims to strengthen its market position amidst global challenges and fluctuations in demand.