India needs drastic reforms in the education sector to build a
vast talent pool for driving the IT industry growth faster, Infosys Technologies Ltd chairman N.R. Narayana Murthy said
"We require a reforms programme in the education sector similar to
the economic reforms in the nineties that ushered in the
liberalization era," Murthy said at a conference on 'India:
Knowledge and Professional Services Hub to the World', organised
by All India Management Association (AIMA).
Asserting that the future of the Indian IT industry was bright as
evident from its return to growth path after downturn last year,
Murthy said a study by McKinsey estimated that the industry had
the potential to generate about $300 billion by 2020 if it could
grow at 20 percent annually or by 2027 growing at 10 percent per
"The challenge to achieve the ambitious target will be our ability
to produce a vast pool of talent. The industry will require an
additional six-seven million engineers, which is difficult with
the available education infrastructure. It's time for reforms in
the education sector," Murthy told about 200 delegates at the
Noting that India was experiencing one of the highest growth in
the world, Murthy said the infrastructure sector would face a huge
shortage of engineers to build roads, power plants, factories,
offices and houses due to constraints in scaling capacity for
raising human capital.
"In addition to education reforms to churn out more engineers,
lawyers, doctors, managers, etc., we need to enhance our basic
infrastructure to increase productivity, efficiency and capacity,"
Murthy pointed out.
Though the IT industry would have incremental opportunities from
the state-run enterprises and e-governance in the domestic market
and emerging markets, he said a host of divergent sectors such as
healthcare, cloud computing and digital economy would enable
companies to move the value chain and sustain the double digit
"The industry requires global brand equity to enable a chief
information officer of an overseas government place a $1 billion
order with the Indian company. There should be enough visibility
in the global market place to bid for long-term projects and
attract local talent for leveraging our domain expertise," Murthy
During the past decade, the industry witnessed a robust growth in
traditional areas of application development, system integration,
package implementation of SAP and Oracle, accounting for 60-70
percent of revenue generation, while new areas such as remote
infrastructure management services, independent validation
services, product life cycle development and engineering services
have been chipping in the remaining 30 percent growth.
"If we have to succeed in the digital economy in face of stiff
competition, we have to move up the value chain and step into new
verticals such as healthcare, legal process outsourcing and
knowledge processing services," Murthy added.