24 April , 2022 Fdiindia
Data Protection Laws Will be Critical in Attracting FDI and Pushing Digital Exports
In today's modern digital services economy, technology and data-driven innovations are at the center of economic activity. International companies in the digital sector increasingly rely on the ability to process and transfer data across borders. The need for protecting consumers' personal information is also encouraging countries to develop progressive data regulations to ensure adequate protection of consumers' rights.
With over a billion people online and the booming e-commerce sector, India has enormous potential for growth as a global digital hub. But because it is also home to 1.2 billion people, it will be difficult for India to strike the right balance between encouraging international investment and keeping data secure; without upsetting either its citizens or compromising on security.
The pandemic has made it clear that data flows are critical to the global economy’s functioning, for example, the adoption of digital services for business continuity, and societal responses such as staying connected, and monitoring and controlling vaccine production. Data flows will only continue to rise as more countries and sectors embrace digital transformation, while restrictive regulations could hinder growth and innovation.
As a result, countries, globally, are working to develop and implement data privacy frameworks that adequately protect citizens’ data, while allowing data to flow across borders in ways that support trade and innovation. In the recently published report by The Dialogue and the UK India Business Council, we set out how India and the UK can align their data protection regulations and create interoperability.
India and the UK can work together, sharing knowledge, experiences, and best practices to develop emerging tech regulations. The UK government has recently listed India as a priority destination for a future data adequacy partnership, and ongoing FTA negotiations offer a framework to drive forward that discussion.
In conclusion, for policymakers to ensure that both countries maximize the enormous societal and economic benefits of data and digital technologies, laws, and regulations should be reviewed with flexible laws to cover legitimate data-related concerns. But the government needs to ensure that these new laws are future-proofed because they will enable people, businesses, and governments in both countries to prosper.