India Is World’s Second-Fastest Digitizing Economy, Report Says

India Is World’s Second-Fastest Digitizing Economy, Report Says

The South Asian nation is absorbing technology faster than ever, with a population of internet subscribers only trailing China.

India’s appetite for technology is growing, as the country is seen as a great destination for new products and a market that has yet to be tapped.

The trend is affirmed by a new study from the McKinsey Global Institute that shows businesses in India are transforming to the digital economy at a pace that trails only Indonesia. India is also the second fastest-growing market for digital consumers. The country had 560 million internet subscribers in 2018, trailing only China.

“Indian mobile data users consume 8.3 gigabytes (GB) of data each month on average, compared with 5.5 GB for mobile users in China and somewhere in the range of 8.0 to 8.5 GB in South Korea, an advanced digital economy,” say the authors of the report.

Other findings in the report include:

  • There are 1.2 billion mobile phone subscriptions in India. Indians downloaded more than 12 billion apps in 2018.
  • There is plenty of room for growth in the country, where only a bit more than 40 percent of the populace has an internet subscription.
  • Digital adoption is still uneven, and the process is supported by both the private and the public sector.
  • A survey of more than 600 firms showed that “digital leaders in the top quartile of adopters are two to three times more likely to use software for customer relationship management, enterprise resource planning, or search engine optimisation.”
  • The digital economy could create 60 million to 65 million jobs by 2025. Many of these will require functional digital skills. Retraining and redeployment will be needed for up to 45 million workers whose jobs could be changed or replaced.
  • Also by 2025, core digital sectors such as IT and business process management, digital communication services, and electronics manufacturing could add up to $100 billion more to India’s gross domestic product.


“Newly digitising sectors, including agriculture, education, energy, financial services, health care, logistics, and retail, as well as government services and labour markets, could each create $10 billion to $150 billion of incremental economic value in 2025 as digital applications in these sectors help raise output, save costs and time, reduce fraud, and improve matching of demand and supply,” say the authors of the McKinsey report. 

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