Kolkata: "China would emerge as the biggest threat to India in the coming years in the field of IT outsourcing", chairman

of Wipro Limited Azim Premji said today (Apr 4, 2005). Speaking at an interactive session organised by the eastern regional council of Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry in Kolkata, the IT billionaire said that although English language was a major constraint for the Chinese at the moment, this handicap was likely to be overcome in the next five to ten years, he said. Premji said that the Chinese were very hard working, competitive, and dedicated, as a result of which they were able to overcome any odds by dint of labour. He said that China had chalked out a massive programme on primary education with focus on training in English. Premji warned that India should not remain complacent and the IT companies and the Government should invest in quality processing and other related areas to stay ahead in global competition. China had also offered academicians staying outside to come to the mainland and train students. Speaking about infrastructure, Premji said that power was an area of concern, adding that privatisation of distribution was an immediate requirement. Premji said that reforms in the power sector were not going well, as it was a State subject. Other areas where Government should give adequate attention were water management, road and airport infrastructure. Premji said that reforms in the telecom sector were a success story and mobile service in India was comparable to the best in the world. Wipro, which had already set up a software development centre in Kolkata, had sought more land from the West Bengal Government for expansion of operations. Premji also lauded the State Government for being progressive in thought and action.

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