MeitY Secy To Hardware Makers

SUMMARY

The government has been actively “instructing” electronic component makers to take care of the country’s security interests right from the design phase, said Krishnan

The MeitY secretary also underlined the importance of a resilient supply chain that could endure external shocks such as geopolitical issues

This comes seven months after the Centre announced plans (now rescinded) to impose a licensing regime to import IT hardware products, citing national security concerns

Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) secretary S Krishnan has directed electronic component manufacturers to prioritise India’s security interests.

Speaking at an event, Krishnan said that the government has been actively “instructing” electronic component makers to take care of the country’s security interests right from the design phase of their new projects. 

“What we advocate is that and what we try to do both within the government is secure by design. Secure by design is something that we have to ensure even from the time that you (electronic component manufacturers) start designing a product. You design it in a way that the country’s security interests are taken care of,” Krishnan said as per news agency PTI.

Citing his rationale, he said that the scale of national security risks has grown significantly due to cyber security concerns. “These risks extend beyond individual concerns to encompass substantial threats at the national level,” Krishnan added.

The MeitY secretary also underlined the importance of a resilient supply chain that could endure external shocks such as geopolitical issues. 

“If something happens there (in Taiwan) what will happen to the supply chain of the chips? We need to ensure that there are supply chains which are resilient and we have to ensure that geopolitical issues do not append the economy,” Krishnan added. 

His comments hold importance as the rise of the GenAI ecosystem has fuelled the global race for semiconductor chips. The growing adoption of AI technologies and startups has led to a surge in the prices and demand for AI chips even as most of them are manufactured in Taiwan.

The comments come nearly seven months after the Centre announced plans to impose a licensing regime to import IT hardware products. In August last year, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) notified immediate restrictions on the import of certain electronics products, citing national security concerns. Eventually, the proposal was rescinded in September 2023.


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