Gartner: ICT 'borderless' by 2015

As emerging markets continue to see rapid IT growth, the sector will become a 'borderless state' with companies and countries buying their tech from around the globe, Gartner has said.

The analyst house said 'country of origin' will no longer matter for IT sourcing, nor will the location of the provider's headquarters or employees.

"Rapid IT growth in emerging nations is removing borders in business that will impact everyone. Even if you have no direct operations in China, or India or anywhere else in the emerging world, your suppliers are probably there and so are some of your partners and customers," said Partha Iyengar, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner.

Iyengar added the IT sector in the rest of the world must learn how to keep pace. "Organisations must learn to trade and compete with these rapidly transforming, highly organised companies, which leverage low-cost, highly skilled labour sources. If they do not, they will be at a significant competitive disadvantage," Iyengar said.

Despite the rapid rate of growth in emerging markets, Gartner noted that the gap between them and mature IT markets is still huge. Emerging markets will see a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.9 per cent, reaching a value of $1.3 trillion by 2011. Mature markets will see growth of 4.6 per cent to $2.5 trillion.

But, with investments increasing at a CAGR of 8.5 per cent of GDP from 2006 to 2011, emerging markets are catching up. Mature markets will see a growth rate of about 4.3 per cent over that period, Gartner predicted.

However, emerging markets will over take mature markets in some areas. By 2010, they will lead in telecoms equipment spending, reaching a market size of $263.5 billion by 2011, compared to $236.5 billion in mature markets, Gartner said.

This could be echoed in services as well, Gartner added, noting the six leading Indian providers have been growing at 35 per cent over the past several years, compared to just 10 per cent for the top ten providers globally.

Ian Marriott, research vice president at Gartner, said: "Vendors must consider other emerging markets as a source of future competition and opportunity. High quality vendors will not only be coming from China and India in the future. Regions such as Eastern Europe, Latin America and relatively untapped portions of Asia/Pacific are now viable locations for offshore services."

"Chief information officers (CIOs) must understand the future growth plan of their organisation into many other parts of the world," he added.

Earlier this year at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, mobile leaders declared that emerging markets would lead the globe in their sector.