The AVGC sector has the potential to transform India into a global power for creative talent and help Indian society evolve by pushing it to reach the next level of learning, as well as engaging with the rest of the world by expanding in multiple dimensions, said Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, and Textiles.
Addressing the second edition of CII Summit FX 2021 – Global AVGC and Immersive Media Summit, the Minister said, “”AVGC is truly one area which has India’s creative talent at its very best. India’s agility and resilience that you have already demonstrated in the last 16-17 months through the COVID period has shown to the world that we are a trusted partner.”
Underscoring India’s “phenomenal success story” in service sector, the Minister said that India was able to fulfill all its service commitments throughout the COVID pandemic period, and is now growing at a very fast pace. “Despite facing losses in travel, tourism, and entertainment sector that we had last year, we were able to meet our service export commitments by about 97%. Indian service sector really came up to the world’s expectations, literally uninterrupted. Not a day or hour was lost in terms of whatever commitments our Indian industry had made to the rest of the world. It was astounding the way in which India responded to the COVID challenge,” he added in his address at the valedictory session.
Speaking on the potential of the sector, Goyal said that the AVGC sector can expand in multiple dimensions. “It can become multilingual, multicultural, and help Indian society evolve, and go to the next level of learning, as well as engaging with the rest of the world.” He added, that the world is looking for new avenues to meet their growing needs and Indian AVGC sector can gain the maximum as a trusted partner and become a global power for creative talent.
Citing the example of ‘Amar Chitra Katha’, he said that Indian stories can impact learning outcomes of the youth of India and can also have international appeal. “The children of today are growing up with animation, audio visuals, and comics in the form of animation. If we can expand our scope in the AVGC sector, we can actually impact learning outcomes of the youth of India, because we’ll be taking this to the rural areas of India, and really helping them understand what’s happening in the rest of the world. And you will also find a lot of hidden talent in the villages of India,” he suggested.
He encouraged the AVGC sector to look beyond boundaries and truly become an important segment in India’s global outreach in an effort to reach a trillion dollars of service export in the next 10 years. “Services sector is at a relatively smaller number today, compared to merchandise. But looking at the current speed of growth both the services and trading goods can easily achieve a trillion dollar export target. And in that M&E’s 100 billion dollar industry output will also contribute significantly to India’s exports,” the Minister added.
Hailing the efforts made by CII in promoting the AVGC sector, he invited the industry body for a meeting on Government of India’s Dubai Expo initiative, where India Pavilion would showcase the country’s diversity, its achievements and the future opportunities. “I call on all our experts from the AVGC segment from CII (and FICCI, ASSOCHAM) so that we can do an update on the curtain raiser. We can benefit from their expertise and their involvement in the larger vision to make India a success story at Dubai Expo. And going forward, I want to duplicate that in India also. I want to create a permanent pavilion like that in India,” Goyal said.
Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII, highlighted AVGC sector’s contribution to India’s growth towards the $5 trillion economy target. “The sector can really double its growth rate and easily become about a trillion rupees sector by 2025. And the amount of jobs it can create is such a powerful tool. We can easily create about 2.5 million additional jobs, making it one of the most important and exciting sunrise sectors to nurture,” he said.
K Madhavan, Chairman, CII National Committee on Media and Entertainment and Country Manager & President The Walt Disney Company India & Star India, said that the goal of India’s media and entertainment industry is to reach $100 billion by 2030. “The growth target remains ambitious but not difficult to achieve, provided we get the right support from policymakers and the government. India already produces 160,000 hours of online video content every year , which is the highest in the world. We’ll see the demand for original and regional content to grow every day and more and more consumers getting access to the internet in tier-2 and tier-3 cities.”
He added that India has a massive strength of storytelling talent in the country, and the country should be able to create stories that resonate around the world. Madhavan said that there are few issues to be addressed like a clear cut roadmap for AVGC exports, creating a global b2b opportunities, encouraging increasing convergence initiative between creators and tech innovators, job creation, regional content creation and distribution hubs and support from government on various matters including the reversal of GST. “The soft power that would come from having a globally recognized media industry will have a large and multiple effects on GDP and employment,” he said.
Rajan Navani, Chairman, CII’s India@ 75 Council and Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Jet Line Group of Companies, said that Indian AVGC sector grew at a fast pace during the pandemic, as “we have a strong 300 million Gen Z population that probably no other country has”. He added that India has now positioned itself for being able to be a part of the explosive growth. “eSports, where we look at professional sports gamers, is an area that is increasingly becoming popular around the world. It’s a very unique confluence of technology, youth culture, social networking, entertainment, community, sportsmanship, sports, entertainment, all coming together,” he observed.
Biren Ghose, Vice Chairman, CII National Committee on M&E and Chair, CII Sub Committee on AVGC and Immersive Media and Country Head, Technicolor India, said that the 2021 edition of the CII Summit FX has seven states or representative associations on board. “We requested for a National AVGC Policy and an AVGC Skills Council. We have the draft ready for serious consideration of the government. A wonderful thing that has happened is that this industry now has become multi-ministerial,” Ghose added. He also pointed out primary grassroots level initiatives that have happened as a result of the platform provided by the CII Summit FX.
The second edition of the Animation, Visual effects and Gaming sector (AVGC) Summit is organised by CII in partnership with the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB); State Government of Karnataka and Software Technology Parks of India from 24th August to 29th August. The Summit which will end on August 29 has participation from over 4000 delegates, 114 expert panelists in 34 knowledge sessions. There were 21 international speakers from eight countries – USA, UK, Australia, Netherlands, Singapore, UAE, Canada, and Japan, who covered various issues concerning the global AVGC sector.