National Digital Communications Policy-2018: Govt.

The Indian Cabinet has  approved the National Digital Communications Policy-2018 (NDCP-2018) and re-designation of the Telecom Commission as the “Digital Communications Commission”.

The key objectives of the policy are:

  1. Broadband for all;
  2. Creating four million additional jobs in the Digital Communications sector;
  3. Enhancing the contribution of the Digital Communications sector to 8% of India’s GDP from ~ 6% in 2017;
  4. Propelling India to the Top 50 Nations in the ICT Development Index of ITU from 134 in 2017;
  5. Enhancing India’s contribution to Global Value Chains; and
  6. Ensuring Digital Sovereignty.

These objectives are to be achieved by 2022.

The policy aims to:

  • Provide universal broadband connectivity at 50 Mbps to every citizen;
  • Provide 1 Gbps connectivity to all Gram Panchayats by 2020 and 10 Gbps by 2022;
  • Ensure connectivity to all uncovered areas;
  • Attract investments of USD 100 billion in the Digital Communications Sector;
  • Train one million manpower for building New Age Skill;
  • Expand IoT ecosystem to 5 billion connected devices;
  • Establish a comprehensive data protection regime for digital communications that safeguards the privacy, autonomy and choice of individuals
  • Facilitate India’s effective participation in the global digital economy;
  • Enforce accountability through appropriate institutional mechanisms to assure citizens of safe and
  • Secure digital communications infrastructure and services.

The policy advocates:-

  1. Establishment of a National Digital Grid by creating a National Fibre Authority;
  2. Establishing Common Service Ducts and utility corridors in all new city and highway road projects;
  3. Creating a collaborative institutional mechanism between Centre, States and Local Bodies for Common Rights of Way, standardization of costs and timelines;
  4. Removal of barriers to approvals; and
  5. Facilitating development of Open Access Next Generation Networks.

The new National Digital Communications Policy – 2018 has been formulated, in place of the existing National Telecom Policy-2012, to cater to the modern needs of the digital communications sector of India.

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