When world is discussing 5G, nobody is talking about it in India: Gurnani

C P Gurnani, CEO & MD of Tech Mahindra, India’s fifth-largest IT services company

Leading international investors are planning to visit India in March-April and all of them are looking for stability and predictability in policy as well as judicial reforms, Tech Mahindra MD and CEO C P Gurnani said on Thursday.

He added that India is an important destination for businesses where investors are getting decent returns.

"I was talking to a few leaders here and they are all visiting or are planning to visit India in March-April time frame. The only two request everybody has is stability and predictability of the policy and judicial reforms," Gurnani told PTI.

He expressed concern on recent statutory levies on the telecom sector and said that judicial reforms go hand in hand with ease of doing business.

In an about 12-year-old case on revenue sharing, the Supreme Court recently upheld the government's stand and broadened the definition of adjusted gross revenue (AGR) for telecommunications companies to include non-core operations. The apex court ordered telecom companies to clear all pending AGR dues amounting to around Rs 1.47 lakh crore by January 23, 2020.

Vodafone Idea Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla announced in December that the company will shut shop if it does not get any support on payment of the AGR dues.

He said that global leaders at the World Economic Forum (WEF) here are talking about 5G technology which will transform businesses but the same is delayed in India."There will always be some interpretation of law. Something which will go wrong, something which will go right. As long as there is justice on time, I think people will appreciate it," Gurnani said.

"World over people are looking at 5G as an opportunity. US President Donald Trump had dinner with 35 people and even he wanted to talk about those 35 people about 5G. Nobody is discussing 5G for India. 5G is delayed in India, the world has started issuing spectrum licences for 5G. The rollout was supposed to start in 2020. Right now the telecom sector is itself stressed," he said.

The government has plans to conduct a spectrum auction in April-May which will also include airwaves for 5G services.

Tech Mahindra has signed an agreement with Business Finland for research and development in 5G and 6G technology.

Tech Mahindra is also working with many telcos across North America, the UK, Germany, the Asia-Pacific, Australia, New Zealand and North Asia regions, on 5G launch and digitalisation programmes.

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