Microsoft plans to provide AI skills to 20 lakh Indians by 2025

Microsoft Chairman and CEO Satya Nadella on Wednesday announced that the company would provide 20 lakh people in India with AI skilling opportunities by 2025, through its new ADVANTA(I)GE INDIA initiative.

“India is uniquely positioned to make promise of artificial intelligence (AI) a reality,” said Mr Nadella at Microsoft CEO Connection event in Mumbai. He said: “We are committed to partnering broadly across public and private sector to help close the nation’s AI skill gap and create new opportunity throughout the country.”

This would help close skills gaps across the nation and strengthen the country’s ability to thrive in the AI era, he added. ADVANTA(I)GE INDIA would focus on training individuals in tier-II and -III cities as well as rural areas, enabling people to participate in the new era of AI and unlock inclusive socio-economic progress, Microsoft said.

The initiative will focus on three key areas to create AI fluency – equipping India’s future workforce, upskilling government officials in AI and working to build the AI capability of non-profit organisations.

He highlighted how Microsoft Copilot, along with the company’s other AI solutions, was driving productivity gains for people and organisations by helping them complete work faster. A recent research on early users of Copilot for Microsoft 365 found that they were 29 per cent faster in a series of tasks, including searching, writing and summarising.

Organisations such as Infosys, HCL Tech and LTIMindtree are already boosting their productivity and accelerating innovation using Copilot for Microsoft 365 and GitHub Copilot, the company added. Microsoft also said that organisations in India were seeing an average $3.86 return for every US dollar spent on AI projects.

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