|Introduction: Give reference to the report and its data.|
Body: Role of the Internet economy and government efforts to leverage the Internet for employment.
Conclusion: Conclude by highlighting the role of the private sector also.
The Internet economy or digital economy consists of a network of economic activities, professional interactions and commercial transactions that are based on interactions that are enabled by information and communications technologies (ICT). A report titled “e-Conomy” projected India’s internet economy, worth $155-175 billion in 2022 will grow to $1 trillion by 2030.
What role will the Internet economy play in job creation in India?
- High Economic Growth: Reports have suggested that the online economy would contribute 12-13% of GDP by 2030. The predicted $1 trillion economy would raise per capita income from $2,500 (2022) to $5,500 (2030) leading to a rise in consumption.
- Digital platforms: digital platforms like Aadhaar, the Unified Payments Interface (UPI), and Digilocker have acted as enablers for the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC), Unified Health Interface and Open Credit Enablement Network (OCEN) and have successfully engaged people in Tier-II cities and rural households raising their per capita income and generating jobs.
- B2C e-commerce: Reports have suggested that B2C commerce will contribute about a third of the online economy’s value by 2030. Various sectors like fintech, health tech, online travel, and food delivery platforms will witness strong growth.
- Overseas Presence: Various companies will leverage the skills of employees and will try to expand their business overseas leading to new job generation and acquiring new skills.
- Boost to start-up industry: The Internet economy will benefit start-ups by helping them establish their presence in foreign markets. Presence in overseas markets will help generate jobs in content creation and influencers in marketing their products.
How can the government leverage this growth to address unemployment issues?
- Skill India Mission: Government and industry need to focus on providing skills of 21 century namely related to machine learning, AI, and digital marketing. Schools and colleges could be venues to provide webinars and awareness sessions at an early age.
- Financial Inclusion: Programmes like the JAM model, and UPI, enable citizens to be part of the digital economy and participate in employment opportunities. It also helps in targeting citizens with intended benefits reducing administrative burden and corruption.
- E-Commerce: Government can help small businesses and MSMEs to connect with online shopping portals so that they can sell their products online. Eg is Government e-marketplace (GEM Registration) is an online platform for public procurement introduced by GoI.
- Entrepreneurship: The government through its various programmes like MUDRA yojana, and Start-Up India can support aspiring entrepreneurs by providing them access to funding, cooperation with industry and the creation of a supportive ecosystem for startups.
- Online Government Services: The use of the internet can help government deliver government services online, reducing corruption and increasing efficiency. It also helps in Ease of doing business, reduces red tape and enables faster response to process permits, registrations and certifications.
The government should take the lead in leveraging the Internet economy but efforts of the private sector should be combined with the government sector to bridge the digital divide and ensure digital infrastructure in rural India to provide employment opportunities across the country.