Telecommunications sector in India has made remarkable achievements: PM

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New Delhi, Dec 4(ANI): Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh on Friday said that the telecommunication sector in the country has made remarkable achievements and called for doubling the rural tele-density in the next three years.

While inaugurating the valedictory function of Telecom India 2009 in the national capital, Singh said: "I am very happy to be here in your midst today for the valedictory function of India Telecom 2009. This is an event of great significance. It tells us about the future prospects of our economy, of our polity and our society. The future is here. The telecom industry displays characteristics, which can give you a glimpse of things to happen in our country."

"The telecommunications sector in India has seen rapid progress being made over more than a decade now. This is exemplified by the achievement last week of the figure of 500 million mobile subscribers. We are today the fastest growing telecom market in the world, with the addition of over 12 million subscribers every month in the last year, of which five million were from rural areas," he added.

The Prime Minister further said that the achievements are all the more remarkable as they have come at the time of a global economic slowdown.

"Now that the slowdown is showing signs of moderating, we can hope and aspire for even faster growth of telecommunication sector in our country," Dr. Singh said.

He further said that the importance of the flow of information in for a fast modernizing economy cannot be over-emphasized.

"A strong telecommunications sector promotes social well being and facilitates rapid economic development. It is therefore a matter of great satisfaction to us that our telecom tariffs are among the lowest in the world. This, I believe, has been possible due to our regulatory regime which has encouraged competition, and also due to the innovation and enterprise of our private sector," Dr. Singh said.

"But, while celebrating the growth and substantial achievements of the telecom sector in India, it is important for all of us to be conscious of the large digital divide that still exists in our country. Indeed, this division between urban and rural India is still growing," he added. (ANI)

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