Published: 01st February 2022
AI, drones to get patronage from academia, industry and govt: Finance Minister in Budget 2022
Here are the sectors that were deemed as "sunrise opportunities" by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman during the Union Budget
In the Union Budget speech delivered by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today, February 1, a few sectors were highlighted as having "sunrise opportunities". These were Artificial Intelligence (AI), geospatial systems and drones, semiconductor and their ecosystem, space economy, genomics and pharmaceuticals, green energy and clean mobility systems.
The finance minister said that these sectors hold immense potential for not just sustainable development at scale, which will help modernise the country, but also with regards to providing employment opportunities for youth "and make Indian industry more efficient and competitive."
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"Supportive policies, light-touch regulations, facilitative actions to build domestic capacities and promotion of research and development will guide the government’s approach," said the finance minister in her speech. She also said that for the research and development in these sunrise opportunities, apart from collaborating with academia, industry and the public institutions as well, government contribution will be extended.
The Finance Minister tabled the budget at 11 am on February 1. President Ram Nath Kovind kicked off the Budget Session of the Parliament on January 31, following which FM Sitharaman presented the Economic Survey.
Last year's budget was the first one to be presented amid the COVID-19 pandemic and extensive farmers' protest. Sitharaman replaced the Swadeshi 'bahi khata' and switched to a tablet, to go digital from 2021. She was seen carrying a tablet kept inside a red cover with a golden national emblem embossed on it. Announcing the Economic Survey last year, she had pegged the GDP growth at 11 per cent in Financial Year 2021-22. But the Indian economy has come close to the projection. Advance estimates suggest that the Indian economy is expected to witness a real GDP expansion of 9.2 per cent in 2021-22, after contracting in 2020-21, said the latest Economic Survey.
Last year, the Union Budget allotted resources towards Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan extensively, be it in the social sector, energy, government reforms, migrant workers or agriculture. While the National Education Policy was the focus, the education sector saw a budgetary slash of 6 per cent from Rs 99 crores to Rs 93.2 crores last year.