Support for drone services and AI included in India’s 2022-23 budget says finance minister

India’s Economic Times reports the 2022 budget speech by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman as promoting the use of artificial intelligence and drone technology in a big way to modernise and streamline processes across sectors such as education, banking, transport and infrastructure.

According to the report, “Through the Drone Shakti project, the government will encourage startups to come up with varied applications for drones, including drones as a service. Sitharaman also said the government would encourage the use of drones by farmers for surveying land and spraying insecticides, apart from digitising land records.” This is supported by the proposed setting up a public-private partnership (PPP) scheme for delivery of digital and high-tech services to farmers in collaboration with public institutions.

The newspaper also says the finance minister “said that artificial intelligence, geospatial systems and drones, semiconductors, space imaging, genomics, green energy and clean mobility systems had immense potential to create sustainable development at scale and modernise the country.” Further comments included the launch of design-led manufacturing for 5G as a performance-linked incentive (PLI) scheme in FY23. The required spectrum auction for India’s 5G rollout will also be conducted in FY23, she said.

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