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Outlook for Indian IT industry better next fiscal: Nasscom

By:  Tupaki Desk   |   7 Jan 2014 6:25 PM GMT
The multi-billion dollar Indian IT industry is poised for higher revenue growth in fiscal 2014-15, as the outlook is qualitatively better than this fiscal (2013-14), a top industry representative said Tuesday.

"Though we are sticking to the 12-14 percent forecast for this fiscal, the outlook is qualitatively better for next fiscal. We will give a forecast for the coming fiscal mid-February," National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) president R. Chandrashekhar told reporters here.

Chandrashekhar, a former telecom secretary who took over as president of the industry body Sunday from Som Mittal, also said Nasscom will hold its three-day annual summit 'India Leadership Forum 2014' from Feb 12 in Mumbai.

"We have projected the industry to clock export revenues of $84-87 billion this fiscal (2013-14) as against $76 billion last fiscal (2012-13)," Chandrashekhar said.

In the Indian market too, the industry is expected to grow marginally year-on-year at 14 percent to post Rs.120,000 crore (Rs.1.2 trillion) this fiscal against Rs.104,700 crore (Rs.1.05 trillion) last fiscal.

In view of the global economic slowdown and slower than expected growth in developed markets such as the US and Europe, which account for 80 percent of the industry's export revenues, the president said the growth would not be as faster and higher as it was in the pre-2008 era.

"Qualitatively we can expect the growth rate to be better. We cannot, however, hope for a dramatic step-up in the growth rate but it will be gradual," Chandrashekhar said.

If there is an up-tick in the IT export markets, Nasscom would revise the revenue guidance upwards in the later half of next fiscal.

"Even our long-term projection of $300 billion by 2020 is neither a number game nor a marketing gimmick but an indicative of the kind of transformation the industry can effect and the change it can bring with a better service delivery," he observed.

The trade body will focus this year on accelerating entrepreneurship, IP (Intellectual Property) and start-ups and contribute better to meet customer needs to drive the export market and expand domestic market.

"As an export-driven sector, with about 90 percent revenues coming from overseas, we will witness quality of demand getting better as evident from signs of improvement in the US and European economies. The domestic market also offers huge opportunity for the industry to partner with the private sector and the governments," Chandrashekhar said.

Noting that it was advantage India on the human capital front, the former IT secretary said the country had capacity to fill the huge shortfall of skills in the western economies with its demographic dividend.

"We have the capacity to make up for the skill shortage in our export markets and turn the opportunity into a win-win situation for the industry and its clients, which look to adopt our technology for innovation and competitiveness," Chandrashekhar added.

Nasscom chairman and software major Mindtree Ltd chief executive Krishnakumar Natarajan, who was present on the occasion, said tapering of the stimulus package by the US Federal Reserve would not affect the industry much as its (American) IT market was mainly driven by the private sector and government curbs would have little impact on revenues.