India’s ‘space economy’ valued at Rs. 36,794 crore

admin March 29, 2022
Updated 2022/04/08 at 2:33 PM
space economy

A collaboration between two leading research and educational institutes in Thiruvananthapuram has shed light on India’s “space economy,” the parameters of which have remained mostly ambiguous even as the country’s space programme has grown by leaps and bounds.

Researchers from the Centre for Development Studies (CDS) and the Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST) arrived at a value of Rs. 36,794 crore (about $5 billion) for the fiscal year 2020-21 in a first-of-its-kind effort to quantify India’s space economy. They discovered that the expected size, as a proportion of GDP, has decreased from 0.26 percent in 2011-12 to 0.19 percent in 2020-21.

The results, are described in a paper titled “The Space Economy of India: its Size and Structure,” by CDS Director Sunil Mani, V.K. Dadhwal, the former Director of IIST, and Shaijumon C.S., Associate Professor of Economics at IIST, were the focus of a recent webinar.

The authors studied the yearly budget for the space programme and its elements, including space production, operations, and applications, using globally approved frameworks. According to the research, space applications accounted for the largest chunk of this emerging economy, constituting 73.57 percent (Rs. 27,061 crore) of it in 2020-21, followed by space operations (Rs. 8,218.82 crore or 22.31 percent) and manufacturing (Rs. 1,515.59 crore or 4.12 percent ).

According to the report, the space budget has a significant impact on the dynamics of the space economy. “‘India’s space economy has grown significantly and currently contributes to around 0.23 percent of the country’s GDP on average” (over 2011-12 to 2020-21). In the previous two years, we have also seen a decrease in the budget for space-related activities, which has resulted in a fall in the size of the economy, “Professor Mani added. The budget allocation for 2020-21 was Rs. 9,500 crore, down from Rs. 13,033.2 crore in the previous fiscal year. The space economy’s expected size has fallen from Rs. 43,397 crore in 2018-19 to Rs. 39,802 crore in 2019-20 and Rs. 36,794 crore in 2020-21.

The study also discovered that the space budget as a proportion of GDP fell from 0.09 percent in 2000-01 to 0.05 percent in 2011-12, and has been relatively stable since then. In terms of GDP, India spends more than China, Germany, Italy, and Japan, but less than the United States and Russia.

Despite its limitations, the research represents a first-of-its-kind effort to objectively assess the extent of the space economy, according to Dr. Shaijumon. One disadvantage, according to Professor Mani, is the difficulty of determining the extent of the space-based remote sensing industry. “The next stage for us would be to investigate the influence of the space industry on the Indian economy as a whole.” “There is a direct and indirect influence,” he said.

The authors relied on the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) and Parliament papers, the Comptroller and Auditor-(CAG) General’s reports, statistics on intellectual property rights, and other government data for the current analysis, as well as Scopus-indexed space publications.

The CDS-IIST research initiative was timed to coincide with new Central Government regulations that opened up the industry to private actors. According to the authors, these measures are extremely likely to increase the size of the sector via more private investment and stronger integration with the global private space economy.

Source: The Hindu

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