Union Budget 2018: Government to Push Research Efforts in AI, Big Data, IoT

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Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday announced efforts to enhance research in disruptive technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Big Data, Internet of Things (IoT) and Robotics. “Niti Aayog will establish a national programme to direct research efforts in new-age technologies. The Department of Science will also launch a Mission for Cyberspace,” Jaitley announced in his Budget speech in Parliament.

In addition, the Minister also announced a hike in customs duty on mobile phones to 20 percent from the previous 15 percent, in a bid to boost local value addition in domestic electronics manufacturing. Presenting the Union Budget 2018-19, Jaitley said he was making a “calibrated departure” from the usual practice of reduction in customs duties.

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Even the customs duty on smart-watches and wearables has been doubled to 20 percent, while specified parts and accessories of mobile phones have seen a duty hike to 15 percent from the current range of 7.5-10 percent.

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