Amid increased focus of the Narendra Modi government on harnessing technology to change lives, a study by McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) has said a dozen “empowering technologies”–ranging from mobile Internet to cloud computing to advanced genomics–could potentially add up to $1 trillion a year to the indian economy by 2025.
Used together, these technologies–categorised broadly into those that digitize life and work, smart physical systems and technologies for rethinking energy–could account for 20-30% of the country’s gross domestic product growth between 2012 and 2025 and help millions achieve a better quality of life, according to the study titled “India’s Technology Opportunity: Transforming Work, Empowering People”, released on Tuesday.
While technology applications such as mobile payments can address the problem of financial inclusion by helping as many as 300 million more people gain access to banking services, digital technologies in the education sector can help produce about 24 million more educated workers.
The study said about 90 million farmers could raise their productivity with real-time market information and as many as 22 million through precision farming. These improvements have the potential to raise incomes of 100 million farmers and bring better nutrition to 300-400 million consumers. Similarly, “disruptive technologies” could transform the delivery of public health services, extending care through remote health services, including delivering expert consultations via the mobile Internet.
It said hybrid and genetically-modified crops, precision farming (using sensors and GIS-based soil, weather, and water data to guide farming decisions), and mobile Internet-based farm extension and market information services alone could help create more than half the $45-80 billion a year in additional value by 2025.
In financial services, the technology applications could raise incomes by 5-30% of the 300 million people they are expected to help, thanks to better access to credit and the ability to save and make remittances. The sized applications could translate into economic value of $32-140 billion per year by 2025.
In education, the report estimates an economic impact of $60-$90 billion a year by 2025 from the higher productivity of more highly educated workers. In the health care sector, using “Internet of Things” tracking systems to curb counterfeit drugs could be worth as much as $15 billion a year. The total value of empowering technologies in health care could be $25-$65 billion a year by 2025. Of this, the largest share ($15 billion to $30 billion) could come from equipping health-care centres and health workers to bring services to some 400 million poor people.
Energy technologies, including unconventional oil and gas, and solar technology, could have economic impact of $50-95 billion a year by 2025, including the value of carbon emissions avoided. The most significant impact is expected from smart metering, which could save the country $15-20 billion a year in 2025 in reduced transmission losses.