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Reliance Jio to cover 80% of India this year

business Updated: Feb 22, 2016 01:39 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Mukesh Ambani

Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Industries Limited.(Reuters Photo)

The much awaited Reliance Jio mobile voice and internet data service will be launched by the middle of this year and cover 80% of the 1.3 billion population, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) chairman Mukesh Ambani said in an interview to CNN International.

“In the next 20 years in a networked society we will much more change than what we have seen in the last several years and it is digitisation and digital world that will lead this. India cannot be left 2013 it was 150th in the world in terms of mobile broadband penetration and quality, and Jio is really conceived to change this position,” Ambani said.

“This digital infrastructure is a very good investment for me personally to make sure youth of India is empowered and they have equally opportunity...that is why we have taken high risks,” he added.

On the prevailing low oil prices, he said it likely to remain low for 3-5 years, benefitting a net-importing nation like India.

“As we see the situation (oil prices), it’s low for long. And this is really the first time in the world that oil prices have gone down on incremental supply,” Ambani told CNN.

He said never has the price fallen because there has been more supply than demand. Because of innovations in the US, large quantities of oil are available now.

“It helps our foreign exchange bill... it helps the fiscal deficit of government because it can mop up incremental revenue. So for oil importing countries, it’s very good,” he said.