New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday announced that India is targeting the rollout of a 6G telecom network, which will provide ultra-high-speed internet connectivity, by the end of the decade.
He made the announcement while inaugurating the country's first 5G testbed to enable startups and industry players to test and validate their products locally and reduce dependence on foreign facilities.
He also said it is estimated that the 5G network rollout will add USD 450 billion to the Indian economy.
He further noted that the 5G technology will not only increase the internet speed but also bring positive change in the governance of the country, ease of living, and ease of doing business.
It will boost growth in agriculture, health, education, infrastructure, and logistics, he added.
India currently has 3G and 4G telecom networks and companies are gearing up to launch 5G over the next few months.
Connectivity, PM Modi said, will decide the progress of the country in the 21st century and so modern-day infrastructure needs to be rolled out.
According to the prime minister, a task force has started work on rolling out a 6G network by the end of the decade.
Criticizing the previous Congress-led UPA government, PM Modi said the 2G era was symbolic of policy paralysis and corruption.
The country, under his government, has moved transparently to 4G and is now going to 5G.
Teledensity and internet users are fast expanding, he said, adding that mobile manufacturing units in India have expanded from 2 to over 200 and the country is now the world's biggest mobile manufacturing hub.
The prime minister also said that his government has encouraged healthy competition that has led to India having one of the cheapest telecom data charges in the world.
Indigenous 5G testbed in the telecom sector is an important step in India's self-reliance, he added.