I&B ministry establishes the AVGC promotion task force 

Finally, the wait is over. The ministry of information and broadcasting (I&B) has constituted the animation, visual effects, gaming and comics (AVGC) promotion task force.

Earlier, in the union budget speech of 2022, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the set up of a task force to recommend ways to market and reach global demand for the AVGC sector.

The secretary of I&B will head the task force, which will submit its first action plan within 90 days.

The task force also includes state governments of Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telangana; heads of education bodies such as the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE), National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT), and representatives of industry bodies – Media and Entertainment Skill Council (MESC), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) including industry stakeholders.

The industry representatives are CII National AVGC Committee 2022 chairman and Technicolor India country head Biren Ghose, FICCI AVGC-XR Forum chairman and Punnaryug Artvision founder Ashish Kulkarni, Anibrain founder and CEO Jesh Krishna Murthy, Redchillies.VFX COO and VFX producer Keitan Yadav, Whistling Woods International CTO Chaitanya Chinchlikar, Zynga India SVP and country head Kishore Kichili, Hungama Digital Media Entertainment MD and CEO Neeraj Roy.

In an official statement, the ministry said, “The Animation, Visual Effects, Gaming and Comic (AVGC) sector in India has the potential to become the torchbearer of Create in India and Brand India. India has the potential to capture five per cent (~$40 billion) of the global market share by the year 2025, with an annual growth of around 25-30 per cent and creating over 1,60,000 new jobs annually.”

The ministry also stated, “The creation of an AVGC Promotion Task Force with the participation of Government of India, state governments and key industry players will provide focused thrust for the growth of the sector by driving the institutional efforts to guide the policies of growth for this sector, establish standards for AVGC education in India, actively collaborate with industry and international AVGC institutes, and enhance the global positioning of the Indian AVGC industry.”

Sharing his thoughts about the new task force, Ashish Kulkarni commented, “The formation of the Indian AVGC task force is a welcome move by the Government of India – Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. The industry stakeholders along with the critical ministries from the center and states will work on the future road map of Indian AVGC. We would like to re-position the Indian AVGC brand within India as well as globally. Indian AVGC offerings have moved up the value chain qualitatively and quantitatively as well in the last two decades. AVGC is a career option amongst the new generations and has evolved as a top choice. Indian artistic and creative power will find a great recognition and place in the world of Metaverse and all other forms of storytelling. I am sure with this focus on Indian AVGC by forming the task force India will be able to create global brands and world-class services.”

Reacting to the above official statement, Jesh Krishna Murthy said, “Very thrilled that the government is recognising the huge potential of the AVGC sector and growth potential in India. And I’m humbled to be part of this effort and look forward to making India a front runner in this globally.”

Chaitanya Chinchlikar commented, “The Indian AVGC industry is on the cusp of a global leadership breakthrough. What software did for India in the past two decades, Indian AVGC has the potential to do for the nation over the next decade. In order to ensure that this potential is fully realised, we need a syncretic and cohesive policy that inspires all the stakeholders to work together in striving for excellence. As a part of the Task Force, I hope to contribute towards such a policy framework.”

He further added, “The foundation of any industry is education. If Indian AVGC is to fulfill its potential, a comprehensive approach to its education is a must. Right from high school to higher/technical education, the AVGC sector needs an academic policy that will give it the quality and quantity of human resources it needs. At Whistling Woods International, over the past 15 years, we have built a world-class academic pedagogy and teaching methodology for the Media & Entertainment industry, including one for the AVGC sector and we hope to apply some of that learning towards the national AVGC policy framework as well.”

EDGE by Pearl Academy president Dr. Nalin Mehta said, “Technology has disrupted the traditional media business and with the convergence of the film, animation, and gaming businesses India has a great opportunity to become the global hub for production and services in the AVGC sector. The setting up of the AVGC committee by the Modi government is a great step. It reflects the urgency with which it is moving ahead and all stakeholders must come together for this initiative to power the industry’s future.”