In order to boost Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Digital India’ campaign, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved 26 per cent FDI (foreign direct investment) in digital media.
Earlier, 26 pc FDI was applicable only to the print media in the country.
It has been decided to permit 26 pc FDI under government route for uploading/ streaming of news and current affairs through the digital media on the lines of print media.
Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal while addressing the media on Wednesday after the Cabinet meeting in New Delhi, said, “Even as foreign direct investment slows down across the globe, we are looking to liberalise norms in the country.”
“We hope India can maintain its position as an attractive investment destination and grow in the coming months,” he added.
The Central government on Wednesday liberalised FDI rules in four sectors including digital media in order to boost foreign investment in private sector.
According to industry experts, previously there was no explicit policy on digital media.
Spending on digital media and shifting to this platform from the print media has become a new trend in the media world as digital media can provide news and other information in the fastest way.
Within a few years, a large number of digital media organisations have come up across the country including the Northeast.
Industry experts point out that there was no explicit policy on digital media previously.
A media report quoted Jehil Thakkar, partner at Delotte India as saying, “This will now allow digital platform to be unlocked from the bigger companies and seek separate valuation.”
It may be mentioned that the Central government allows 49 per cent FDI in broadcast sector.
It has been reported that unlike traditional media, digital media impacts 1.2 billion people across social stratas in cities and rural areas of the country.
It is hoped that the Cabinet decision will help create consumption and more employment in the digital media platforms.
However, despite the Central government’s stress on the growth of digital media, several States of the country including Assam are yet to come up with digital media policy.