Telecom sector will need over 47 lakh additional skilled manpower by 2021-22 over and above the present strength of around 40 lakh, as per various industry estimates and assessment, Parliament was informed today. “…an additional skilled manpower requirement to the tune of 47,75,500 from the present strength of 40,04,500 is estimated in telecom sector till the end of financial year 2021-22, meaning thereby an increase of 119.25 per cent over the present strength in a period of five financial years,” Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha today said in the Lok Sabha.
He quoted ‘Skill Plan’ of Department of Telecommunication, prepared based on inputs from Environmental Scan Report-2016 of Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE), assessment of Indian Cellular Association (ICA), Telecom Sector Skill Council (TSSC) for the manpower estimates.
Sinha said the government is implementing programmes to improve connectivity through BharatNet, which aims at linking each of the 2.5 lakh Gram Panchayats of India through optical fibre network that in turn will boost various economic activities in the rural sector. It will also open up avenues for better access for service providers such as telecom operators, cable TV operators, e-commerce companies, etc to launch new services and in turn aid creation of local employment opportunities.
“Other flagship schemes of the government like Digital India, Make-in-India and Smart Cities also are expected to create employment opportunities in telecom sector,” he said. The minister said the telecom sector is one of the highly competitive high-tech sector and is currently going through a phase of consolidation with mergers and acquisitions happening among various companies.
“Mergers and acquisitions can have an impact on certain specific telecom service providers. New entrants also tend to shake up the market; however, they also create direct and indirect employment opportunities. Overall, it may be mentioned that there is a vast potential for growth in this sector,” Sinha said.
As per data shared by Sinha, licenced telecom operators have jointly made investment to the tune of Rs 10,44,027 crore in 2016-17 alone and the sector has attracted foreign direct investment of about Rs 39,264 crore in the first half of ongoing financial year.