India’s IT exports this fiscal would be higher than anticipated, given the strong second quarter numbers posted by some big companies, Infosys Technologies CEO Gopalakrishnan said on Thursday.

IT exports are estimated to grow between 13 per cent and 15 per cent in 2010-11, up from about five per cent in the previous year, he said.

“I believe that given the strong performance in the second quarter by the Indian (IT) companies, this number probably will get revised upwards,” Mr. Gopalakrishnan said at IT.Biz, an annual, state-sponsored event here.

TCS and Infosys, India’s top two software exporters, posted robust second quarter performance, with double digit sequential revenue growth.

“Overall, the IT-BPO industry is expected to touch around $ 71.7 billion this year, accounting for about 5.8 per cent of our GDP”, Mr. Gopalakrishnan said.

He said the IT industry would create 1.5 lakh to 1.7 lakh jobs in the current fiscal. “This is only assuming growth is around 10 per cent“.

Noting that currently seven cities account for 90 per cent of the Indian IT export revenue, Gopalakrishnan said it’s good to know the sector is spreading its footprint in Tier II and III cities.

He said the focus is to create about 43 new locations to ensure they become the next IT-ITeS hubs around the country to meet the growth demand and near saturation levels in Tier-I cities.

He said 40 per cent of new employees of Infosys are from rural families where one or both their parents have not completed the tenth standard.

Infrastructure growth in Tier-I cities is absolutely essential for the IT sector to sustain high-growth as development in Tier II and III cities would be at a lower rate, Mr. Gopalakrishnan said.

“There is no doubt that these are exciting times for the industry. I believe the future is bright and holds new promises and we -- the government and the industry -- have to work together to leverage its full potential,” he added.