India’s artificial intelligence investment to be 2.5% of global total in 2023

AI-powered platform launched in Dubai to monitor e-vehicles
AI-powered platform launched in Dubai to monitor e-vehicles

Firms are increasingly relying on contracting and gig models while focusing on building internal artificial intelligence talent through reskilling and up-skilling

India, the world’s second largest hub in training and hiring AI talent, is seeing a surge in hiring for artificial intelligence professionals, leading to a shortage of talent because of the rapid growth in AI applications, a study by Nasscom, along with EY and with support from Microsoft, EXL and Capgemini, has said.

Firms are increasingly relying on contracting and gig models while focusing on building internal artificial intelligence talent through reskilling and up-skilling, as per the study, a first of its kind initiative called `AI Adoption Index’ for India and released on Thursday.

Four sectors – BFSI, CPG & retail, healthcare, and industrials & automotive – could contribute about 60% of AI’s potential value-add of $450-500 billion to India’s GDP by 2025, the study finds.

It said, global investments in artificial intelligence have more than doubled from 2020 ($36 billion) to 2021 ($77 billion). India is growing at a CAGR of 30.8% and is poised to reach $881 million by 2023 through investments in artificial intelligence, the study says it will represent just 2.5% of the total global AI investments of $340 billion.

At the launch of the report, Nasscom president Debjani Ghosh said the pandemic has made it absolutely time critical for organisations to move from data & technology silos to building specialised AI capabilities at scale across sectors combined with a structured data utilisation strategy. She said artificial intelligence adoption has to be a CEO priority, a strategic priority, and not one to be left to the IT team. She said organisations have to look at whether they are hiring the right talent; they need to measure the impact of AI initiatives to understand what has gone right, what has not.

The AI Adoption Index, she said, will not only provide the necessary benchmark for organisations on AI maturity but will also help them take the key structural steps to realise AI’s potential to tangible national value. Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said India’s long term success will depend on employing artificial intelligence on a large scale. He said there are numerous use cases, including in facial recognition for pensioners who cannot come to the bank, in crime management, in school attendance, even in pothole management. He said India can be leaders in AI, given the amount of data we have.

The study found that 65% of organisations have artificial intelligence strategy defined either at a functional or enterprise level. “Although process optimisation continues to be the primary driver of AI adoption amongst organisations, there is a rising focus on achieving customer-centric goals leveraging AI as a tool for innovation and growth. Larger organisations are driving innovation with AI, helped by dedicated budgets, resources and alignment with broader objectives.”

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