Amitabh Kant defends import restriction, says technology needs reliable partners

India needs reliable partners in areas such as technology, which in some cases warrants tariff caps, 25 August. G20 Sherpa Amitabh Kant told Moneycontrol’s Policy Next.

“There are some areas where these issues arise, but we need to understand their specifics. It’s not just about becoming a manufacturing hub, it’s also the fact that in areas like IT and hardware, the trust aspect is very important, so we (India) have introduced certain restrictions. And the rest is decided by the government,” he said, adding that India strongly believes in free trade.

Kant pointed out that historically each phase, such as a pandemic, is followed by a period of about 5-6 years of protectionism in the world. India is focusing on promoting free trade, but in some areas that are related to manufacturing, it needs to promote programs like Production Linked Incentives (PLI) to make the country a manufacturing hub, he added.

“I strongly believe in free trade, India believes in free trade. But some policies have to be focused on manufacturing. In one or two areas where Make in India is involved, we need to make policy calls to increase the scale of manufacturing,” Kant said.

The government on August 3 restricted the import of laptops, tablets, personal computers, ultra-small form factor computers and servers. Although exemptions were provided, free importation of these goods would only be permitted with a license.

An outcry followed, and the government announced a day later that it was delaying the implementation of these restrictions for three months until November 1.

The government defended its decision, with Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar saying the move was not to introduce a license, but to ensure that only reliable parts are used in India’s technology ecosystem, reducing India’s dependence on imports and domestically. production increased.

“This is definitely not an attempt to go back to the license district. As we increase the digitization of our economy, we really want to make sure that all the hardware items that enter the digital economy are tracked and sourced from trusted sources,” August 10. Chandrasekhar said in an interview with Moneycontrol. “In retrospect, it shouldn’t have been called restriction or licensing. It should have been called more of an import control system.”

Godfrey Kemp

"Bacon fanatic. Social media enthusiast. Music practitioner. Internet scholar. Incurable travel advocate. Wannabe web junkie. Coffeeaholic. Alcohol fanatic."