Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu Wednesday said digital automation will give rise to a job market increasingly segregated into “low-skill and low-pay” and “high-skill and high-pay” segments, which in turn could lead to an increase in social tension. “Digital automation could exacerbate the gap between returns to capital and returns to labour, but it will be talent, more than capital, which will represent the critical factor of production,” he said in his written speech copy, issued to media at the National Quality Summit 2016 here.
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“This will give rise to a job market increasingly segregated into ‘low-skill and low-pay’ and ‘high-skill and high-pay’ segments, which in turn could lead to an increase in social tensions,” he added.
Prabhu, who also delivered his address to the gathering via video conferencing from New Delhi, said, “Ultimately, the ability of government systems and public authorities to adapt will determine their survival.”
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The government will increasingly face pressure to change their current approach to public engagement and policymaking, due to the impact of digitisation on it, Prabhu said adding digitisation had the potential to raise global income levels and improve quality of life for populations around the world.
“Consumers will continue to benefit from their digital experiences as technological innovation will lead to supply-side miracles, with long-term gains in efficiency and productivity,” Prabhu said.
Transportation and communication costs will drop, logistics and global supply chains will become more effective, and the cost of trade will diminish, all of which will open new markets and drive economic growth, he said.
R Mukundan, Chairman CII Institute of Quality, said companies have to look at digital as a way of life going forward as digital enables better quality of products and services.