Consulting firm APCO Worldwide which has been selected in Forbes’ list of America’s Best Management Consulting Firms 2021 released a report titled ‘Regulation of Online Gaming in India’ urging both federal and state governments to avoid bans and come up with a policy which will give a boost to the online gaming sector in India.
Speaking at the release of the report, APCO Worldwide – Managing Director, Rahul Sharma said, “A growing number of people are spending more time online seeking new forms of entertainment, including playing games online, which is giving a fillip to the segment. There has never been a better time for reforming this sector by bringing in modern and robust regulatory frameworks, which will be in everybody’s interest. This would allow a structured growth of this sunrise industry that has huge untapped potential.”
India is home to more than 400 gaming start-ups, many of them already unicorns. With a projected compound annual growth rate of 40% in India, the sector has attracted major overseas investments (USD 575 million between 2014 2020). The sector, which has been identified as a pillar of growth for Indian economy, by Government of India has enormous potential for wealth and job creation.
APCO Worldwide undertook a comprehensive research by going through various studies and reports on the sector and spoke to a number of industry experts. The report refers to important voices who have lent their support to the growth of the sector including Prime Minister Narendra Modi who in his Mann Ki Baat radio broadcast in August 2020 talked about the immense potential of the Indian gaming industry and commended the contributions of Indian innovators and application developers.
The potential for this industry has also been recognized by the Law Commission of India in its 276th report and NITI Aayog, which have suggested measures to develop a regulatory framework for the gaming industry in line with global best practices to promote growth and innovation while securing consumer interest. In the past, banning online games have failed to serve the required purpose and prohibitive measures and over regulation have led to a large underground gambling economy. While individual state governments are taking their own measures to regulate the industry, this is creating a great deal of conflict between states, which is particularly challenging in an inter-state context.
To bring unity among the states, the federal government should develop an over-arching regulatory framework or guidelines which states can either adopt or treat as a foundation on which to build their own localized regulations.
These regulations should be mindful of the Skill-Chance distinction and lay down clear parameters for classification of the same.
Clear legislative policies can promote this emerging and lucrative sector and bring in immense revenue in the form of licensing fee and taxes besides creating jobs, from game design, technology, marketing, sales and data analysis, among others.
A copy of the report can be accessed here.
About APCO Worldwide
APCO Worldwide is an advisory and advocacy communications consultancy helping leading public and private sector organizations be catalysts for progress by navigating the challenges of today, acting with agility, anticipating social risk and building organizational reputations, relationships and solutions to succeed. APCO is an independent and majority women-owned business. Recently, APCO has been selected in Forbes’ list of America’s Best Management Consulting Firms in 2021.
APCO has been operating in India for over 15 years with presence in New Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru. In India, APCO offers a full suite of services – from advisory, advocacy, corporate communications, crisis and litigation management to sustainability and social impact.
For more information, please visit www.apcoworldwide.com.