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Google has launched an India Digitization Fund and is going to invest $10 billion through partnerships and infrastructural efforts.
Google LLC (NASDAQ: GOOG) (NASDAQ: GOOGL) has declared its intentions to invest $10 billion in India within the next seven years, to speed up the country’s transition to a digital economy. Since Google began its Indian operations in 2004, it has grown to be an integral part of the company. India has since become a major overseas market for Google with its Android products and many other services.
The chief executive of Google Sundar Pichai revealed that the company will be investing in a new Google for India Digitization Fund. Speaking during the annual Google for India event, Pichai said the persistent coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the importance of technology for both business and personal use.
“So building on our years of investment in India, we are launching a Google for India Digitization Fund with Rs. 75,000 crore which is $10 billion to be invested in India over the next five to seven years…. We’ll do this through a mix of equity investments, partnerships and operational, infrastructure and ecosystem investments. This is a reflection of our confidence in the future of India and its digital economy.”
Google will focus on affordable access and information in local Indian languages, including Hindi, Tamil, and Punjabi. In addition, it will build new products and services that are relevant to India’s unique needs.
The digital transformation will see Google focusing on business empowerment. Furthermore, the tech giant plans to leverage technology and artificial intelligence for social good. Google will pay simultaneous attention to areas like health, education, and agriculture.
Google Suffers from Coronavirus
Like many companies in various sectors, the global health crisis is affecting Google. Earlier this year, Pichai told employees in an email that the coronavirus pandemic is causing problems for the company. He said:
“The entire global economy is hurting, and Google and Alphabet are not immune to the effects of the global pandemic.”
According to a Bloomberg report, Google recently abandoned the Cloud Service project in China and other countries. The report cites two Google employees who confirmed that the decision is due to the pandemic and some geopolitical tensions.
Google and Others Invest in India
There has been a consistent increase in the number of internet users in China. Currently the second-largest online market, estimates show that there would be over 600 million internet users in the country by 2023. This significant growth has attracted a lot of top American companies to invest in China’s internet market.
Recently, Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) declared its intention to invest $97 million in India’s Reliance Jio Platforms to roll out 5G infrastructure service. Similarly, Jhaadu Holdings LLC (a subsidiary of Facebook) invested $5.7 billion in the same company.