HT Leadership Summit 2017: Mukesh Ambani says data is the new soil
New Delhi: India offers the largest investment opportunity in the world as data connectivity and artificial intelligence forms the foundation of a new industrial revolution that could make Asia’s third largest economy overtake China and the US in prosperity, says Mukesh Ambani, chairman and managing director of India’s largest private sector company Reliance Industries Ltd.
Ambani’s vision for an industrial revolution founded on the convergence of big data, energy and technology, expressed at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit 2017, has the potential to transform agriculture productivity, healthcare services and education that could empower a new generation and bridge the gap in prosperity with advanced economies.
“Data is not only the new oil, data is also the new soil,” said Ambani. He said that as energy and information converges in future, Reliance will contribute even more to the country’s growth.
“Five years ago, when most businesses were investing abroad, Reliance decided to invest $60 billion in India. We have completed this investment cycle and we are now ready to commit even more in the next investment cycle. We are doing this out of our undiminished conviction that India is the biggest investment opportunity in the world.”
For foreign investors, chairman of the energy and information conglomerate has a message: “Invest in India, earn in India, grow in India, and prosper together.”
Ambani’s blueprint for the next industrial revolution involves use of digital infrastructure and technology in the farm sector to bring about a green revolution by rejuvenating soil and improving efficiency in supply chain digitally. In the education sector, mobile and data services through Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd and artificial intelligence could connect students in remote villages to the faculty in the most advanced universities and deliver personalized lessons. In healthcare, data connectivity can help in delivering health services remotely.
Ambani believes that use of big data will be a game changer in doing business. Billions of data points generated can help in not only supplying services in response to needs but also in anticipation of a need.
One of the enablers of this shift in the way companies do business is the use of Aadhaar, the biometric identification card issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI). Ambani said that Aadhaar has put India decades ahead of advanced economies.
Ambani also said technology will provide a different developmental model, which is equitable, inclusive and based on good governance and a culture of empathy. “Technology is a great leveller. It gives equal access to all,” he said.
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