New Delhi [India], August 12 (ANI): India ranks globally third in start-ups ecosystem and also in terms of the number of unicorns with the total number of privately held start-up companies valued at over $1 billion rising to 105, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science and Technology Jitendra Singh said on Friday.
Out of the total 105 unicorns in India, 44 were born in 2021 and 19 in 2022.
Addressing the "DST StartUp Utsav", the Minister said, the decade 2021-30 is expected to bring transformational changes for Indian Science, Technology and Innovation (STI).
Singh said, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India has increased the Gross Expenditure on R&D (GERD) more than three times in the last few years. He said as per the latest data, India has over 5 lakh R&D personnel, a number that has shown a 40-50 per cent increase in the last 8 years.
In the last 8 years, Singh said, women's participation in extramural R&D has also doubled and now India occupies 3rd rank in terms of the number of PhDs awarded in Science and Engineering (S&E) after the USA and China. With the shifting global powers and technology becoming the epicentre of international engagements and rulemaking, India under PM Modi is living up to global benchmarks.
Referring to Prime Minister Modi's launch of Start-up India from the ramparts of Red Fort in 2015, Singh said, India in its 75th year of Independence is now home to as many as 75,000 start-ups.
The minister said PM Modi's special focus on Science, Technology and Innovation has fired the imagination of the youth in the country to innovate and solve problems with new ideas. He also pointed out that India's start-ups today are not limited to only metros or big cities and added that 49 per cent of the start-ups are from tier-2 and tier-3 cities.
"We have start-ups emerging in the fields like IT, agriculture, aviation, education, energy, health and space sectors," he said.
On the occasion, Singh released 4 publications featuring promising start-ups under various components of NIDHI including the flagship programme of Technology Business Incubator (TBI) and a coffee table book of 51 CAWACH funded start-ups.
The minister said India ranks third among the most attractive investment destinations for technology transactions in the world as it has a strong focus on science and technology. He said, India is among the topmost countries in the world in the field of scientific research, positioned as one of the top five nations in the field for space exploration and also actively engaged in emerging technologies such as quantum technologies, artificial intelligence etc.
Singh said that the Centre for Augmenting WAR with COVID-19 Health Crisis (CAWACH) programme carved out in a record time by DST just when COVID hit, was the first programme by any department of the Government of India to support start-ups working on COVID products and solutions.
He said, overall, the impact and outcome of DST's programme on innovation and entrepreneurship has been significant: promoting 160 incubators, nurturing 12,000 start-ups including 1627 women-led start-ups, generating 131,648 jobs. (ANI)