The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has attracted a series of Indian entrepreneurs to its shores who today stand out as the perfect ambassadors for India-UAE ties.

Yusuffali MA Organisation: Lulu Group Industry: Retail Place of origin: Kerala

Background: Left India in 1973 for Abu Dhabi to join EMKE Group, founded by his uncle. There he developed the business further and launched the Lulu Hypermarket in 1990 at a time when the retail sector in the UAE was undergoing a change. The group today employs the largest number of Indians outside India.

He is one of the wealthiest Indian with stakes in Catholic Syrian Bank, Federal Bank and Cochin International Airport. He has also purchased the Scotland Yard Building in London.

Factoid: He was conferred the title of Padma Shri in 2008 and Pravasi Bharatiya Samman in 2005, which is the highest Indian government award bestowed upon NRIs.

India Inc. Founder & CEO Manoj Ladwa tracks how India has driven its auto sector on to the road of global success.

Even as you read this piece, there are at least 1,500 passenger cars and 6,000 motorcycles being loaded onto ships at some Indian port for export to the Middle East, Africa, Europe and even the US. The badges they wear read like a veritable who’s who of the international auto industry and include such marquee names as Toyota, Ford, Volkswagen, Suzuki and Renault among cars and Honda, Bajaj and Hero MotoCorp among two-wheelers. And I haven’t even mentioned tractors, heavy, medium and light commercial vehicles, three-wheelers and a host of complex and simple auto components.

Over the last three decades, India has developed a very robust domestic automobile sector where the world’s largest and most popular brands jostle for market share with home-grown auto majors such as Tata Motors, Mahindra & Mahindra, Bajaj Auto Ltd and Hero MotoCorp, among many others.

Today, it is not uncommon to find consumers in the most developed countries in the world driving around in Made in India vehicles. Yes, a vast majority of these vehicles carry the brand names of US, European, Japanese and South Korean companies but make no mistake – each of these cars has been assembled by Indian technicians in Indian factories and mostly with components that are not only made in India but also designed at R&D labs in that country.

Then, it took an Indian enterprise and billions of dollars of Indian investments to restore and renew the glory of iconic British car maker Jaguar Land Rover and revive its fortunes. Another Indian multinational, Apollo Tyres, too, has recently invested about $500-million in a plant in Hungary, its second in Europe after the one in the Netherlands.

All these examples show that the Indian automobile industry is now fully integrated into the global supply chain – and a source of both components and kits as well as fully assembled vehicles to assembly plants, OEMs and showrooms around the world.

In this issue of ‘India Global Business’, we celebrate the global success of this indigenisation effort with our cover story titled ‘Picking up speed’ not only because it is, arguably, among the most successful Make in India initiatives but also because of the lessons it holds for the Narendra Modi government’s efforts to transform India into a global manufacturing hub, which is a precondition to providing new jobs to the millions of young Indians who enter the country’s workforce every year.

The beginnings were small, mostly unheralded and, as is usual with most path breaking economic initiatives in India, widely criticised for opening up the Indian market to foreign players.

Note the similarities with the Modi government’s efforts to build a domestic defence-industrial base in India and its efforts to position India as a global electronics manufacturing hub.

From those small beginnings in the early 1980s, when a handful of Japanese car and two-wheeler makers set up plants to assemble a few thousand units of their vehicles a year from completely or semi knocked down kits imported from their mother countries, India slowly, and organically, developed a local vendor base to bring down the import component in these vehicles to globally acceptable levels and even developed the knowhow and “know why” to be able to develop not only components but complete cars and bikes within the country.

Today, India makes more than 3 million passenger cars and close to 20 million two-wheelers and exports more than half a million of the former and about 2 million of the latter.

China and before it the South East Asian Tiger Economies all followed this approach when they set out to conquer the world of business at various times in the last century.

India is a late adopter of this approach but, as its success in the automobile sector shows, has the necessary wherewithal, including the scientific base and manufacturing capabilities, to replicate this success in other complex engineering sectors.

There are reports that India is considering issuing licenses for the assembly of F-16 or SAAB Gripen fighter planes in India if their parent companies agree to replicate their domestic eco-system of vendors and developments in India. The same is also happening in the case of submarines and artillery guns and small arms.

These initiatives, too, will have to start with limited initial ambitions. But if they are nurtured well and seen through to their logical end, we could well see Made in India fighter planes flying with NATO and Japanese colours one day and consumers in my home country, the UK, speaking on mobile phones and advancing their careers with computers and tablets assembled by an Indian company in England.

Meanwhile, apart from our in-depth feature on the Indian auto sector, there is a usual wealth of material on India’s global march in the pages ahead of this edition.

Manoj Ladwa is the founder of India Inc. and chief executive of MLS Chase Group @manojladwa

The Indian PM has spelt out his vision for a New India ahead of the next General Election in the country.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has, in past Independence Day addresses to the nation, announced grand flagship schemes that promise to transform India. So, one was expecting more of the same this year. Instead, the Prime Minister announced a vision – of a New India, that he urged all Indians to work towards, by 2022.

Established Indian business houses as well as start-ups are investing billions in the Middle East, especially Dubai and Abu Dhabi, to leverage the global access and ease of doing business the region offers.

There are only two certainties in life, death and taxes, goes an old saying. The bonus of living, working and doing business in most Middle Eastern countries is that taxes are either non-existent or very nominal.

A serial entrepreneur explores what makes the Middle East an attractive proposition for Indian start-ups.

The UAE is a hub for expats and global businesses; located strategically this place provides immense business opportunities for people all over the world thus making it a hub for Indian start-ups also.

The region is a magnet for fintech growth, writes an entrepreneur behind a Dubai start-up.

The UAE is known for tall buildings, large projects on sea, oil economy, trading and real-estate projects. The landscape is transformed with e-commerce start-up SOUQ.com taken-over by Amazon for over $650 million.

The UAE is a very small country with 10 million people and seven emirates, diversity is huge with people from over 160 countries. So ideas flow rapidly.

An Indian banker set to expand his start-up base to the UAE elaborates on the reasons behind this move.

Rubique is a FinTech company based in Mumbai. We offer a lending marketplace platform which provides individuals and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the country with frictionless access to a wide range financial services products including loans, credit cards and insurance products.

Donald Trump’s ambivalence on economic and strategic issues concerning India is coming in the way of taking bilateral ties to the next level.

If India and the US were Facebook friends, then many in the Indian establishment would be justified in describing the relationship as “It’s complicated.”

India is a “major defence ally” of the US, the economic relationship is vibrant, at least on the face of it, Washington has reiterated its support for India to be admitted into the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG) as a full member and public statements by senior government officials on both sides continue to exude warmth.

A new publication and web resource on India-US relations delves into a new era of multi-dimensional bilateral ties.

“The relationship between India and America has overcome the ‘hesitations of history’.” This was a statement made by the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, at his joint address to the US Congress in 2016.

The “hesitation” refers to the phase where in a bipolar Cold War era India decided to adopt a foreign policy of non-alignment and India’s weak economy pre-1991 wasn’t helping the American cause either. Nevertheless, the relationship has now moved far away from that “hesitation” and in the last two decades has become reflective of what Undersecretary Nicholas Burns of the Bush administration had predicted: “Within a generation many Americans may view India as one of the most important strategic partners”.

Y.K. Koo, as Managing Director & CEO of Hyundai Motor India Limited (HMIL), is in the driving seat of one of the leading automotive giants in India. ‘India Global Business’ explores his vision for the Indian market, plans for the country as an exports hub and R&D plans for the region.

How important is India for Hyundai globally, as a market and as a production hub?

India has emerged as an important automotive market and offers huge growth potential for automobile companies. At Hyundai, our aim is to become our customers’ lifetime partner in automobiles and beyond by providing new value and experience to customer beyond their expectation. Over the past few decades, we have gained strong market leadership position with sustainable growth through consistent innovation, market research and widening our product portfolio through new launches equipped with new technology and features that are relevant to the Indian market.

Country’s robust automobile manufacturing base is now churning out cars and bikes for diverse geographies from Latin America, Africa to East Asia and Australia.

In fiscal 2016, India exported more cars across the world than China. On the one hand, it does not mean much. In the overall list of top car exporters, India still ranks a poor 20th. Even among emerging economies in Asia, it is behind Thailand.

Yet, overtaking China has its own importance. It is the world’s largest automotive market and also the largest producer. The growth of China’s economy in the last two decades has been led by its rise as an export giant — first in textiles and then in steel followed by computer hardware. It is difficult to find a smartphone or a computer today that does not have even one component that is made in China.

India’s Bird Group, which operates the Roseate Hotels and Resorts luxury chain, has ambitions to expand across Europe and the Middle East after its most recent acquisition of a boutique hotel in the UK. Ankur Bhatia, executive director of the group and director, Bird Hospitality Services, tells ‘India Global Business’ about his vision for the industry and what sets his chain apart in the world of hospitality.

How does your latest acquisition in the UK fit in with your global vision?

Roseate Hotels and Resorts is a global collection of unique and independent stay experiences by Bird Hospitality. Villa at Henrietta Park, formerly known as Villa Magdala, in the city of Bath, United Kingdom, is an integral part of our global strategy to offer best-in-class services that are carefully curated envisaging the best in design, art, hospitality, and personalisation centred around guest experience.

Indians spend an estimated $20 billion on their travels around the world, boosting local economies and creating jobs. A WTO study says this figure will rise to $60 billion by 2020, or about the same as the total FDI inflow into India last year.

Let us start with two simple quiz questions: Which Indian group has spent the largest sum of money in the US since the turn of the millennium? And ditto for Europe?

Okay, here’s are a few hints: it’s not the Tata Group, not the Aditya Vikram Birla Group and not even any overseas Indian-owned business like Arcelor Mittal.

An academic presents his take on the culture and ethics deficit in financial education in a new book.

There is huge demand for finance education globally – from the accounting, banking and finance professions to business schools, students continue to flock. However, the quality and supply of education is generally poor.

One of the worst aspects of this is the lack of culture and ethics in the content of the finance syllabus – it is primarily technical, and ignores the huge and real world importance of qualities like trust, relationships, sustainability and character in financial success. Even worse, there are strong cultural assumptions underlying modern finance theory, which are rarely exposed to debate. These assumptions are that everyone is selfish, everyone is greedy, and money is the most important measure of success and happiness. In a multi-cultural diverse world, finance education remains very mono-cultural, and significantly destructive of society and our ecosystem. The theories and the science teach unsustainability and promote short-termism.

Indian companies have marked out a significant presence in the large and prosperous Nigerian market. This presence will grow further as India’s public sector oil majors are expected to invest up to $15 billion in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector.

A vast majority of Indians are not aware that Nigeria is an economic powerhouse whose citizens, on average, earn $2,123 per year, 20 per cent more than India’s per capita income of $1,850.

We have built a strong foundation for women cricketers in India, says Indian women’s cricket team captain Mithali Raj.

The captain of the Indian women’s cricket team, which narrowly lost in the World Cup at Lord’s Cricket Ground in London in July, believes her team’s performance has created a strong foundation for the future of women’s cricket in India.

Nigeria’s largest and fastest-growing cities is home to many Global Indians. Besides its reputation as a major financial centre and being known as the commercial capital of Nigeria, Lagos also has the distinction of being a historic and lively city.

The number of Indian-built models registered by British buyers rose by almost half (48.6 per cent) to 21,135 units in the first half of this year alone.

UK car production fell by -13.7 per cent in June, with 136,901 cars rolling off production lines, according to recent figures released by the UK’s Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The third consecutive month of decline, following changes in production schedules for new model introductions, resulted in a -2.9 per cent year to date dip in output, triggering alarm bells over the impact of Britain’s exit from the European Union (EU).

Abhishek Lodha is the Managing Director of the Lodha Group, a Mumbai-headquartered developer which made its global foray with high-profile projects in the UK. ‘India Global Business’ caught up with him to get an update on this international vision, plans for the group’s luxury London developments and the Brexit effect on the property market.

What was the motivation behind the Lodha Group’s expansion to the UK?

We started in London in December 2013, early 2014 and the idea was to establish a business which builds on our success and learnings in India and allows us to operate as an Indian multinational by operating in one of the most competitive, most expensive as well as the highest quality markets in the world.

Over the last three years, we are developing two of London’s most prestigious developments – No. 1 Grosvenor Square, which was the Canadian High Commission and before that the American Embassy, and Lincoln Square, which is just off London School of Economics next to the Royal Courts of Justice. What we are trying to do is truly world-class quality. We have put in a lot of effort and money into the design, into the marketing content, brought in the best names from across the UK as well as internationally.

India’s historic tax reform is unlikely to impact the scale of smartphone demand in India, a latest German analysis reveals.

The new Goods and Services Tax (GST) will have no impact on the smartphone demand in India, according to latest telecom research by a German research firm.

Indian Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi recently concluded a visit to the UK for the India-UK Home Affairs Dialogue to collaborate on issues such as counter-terrorism.

The India-UK Home Affairs Dialogue was set up during British Prime Minister Theresa May's visit to India last November. The first meeting took place in New Delhi in May and the latest meeting was co-chaired in London in July by Mehrishi with UK Permanent Secretary Philip Rutnam.

An industry expert explains the significance of Project exports to India’s growth agenda.

Project is an engineering venture or mission: a scheme of development work to be executed by employing the best technologies, continuous innovation and resources – human, financial and physical to create a capital asset. As technology advances, projects tend to move up in sector size as well as technological sophistication in the value-chain.

Project Exports, in essence, connotes setting up of projects overseas as construction and/or engineering projects. It could also involve the export of engineering consultancy or other engineering services as desired by the project owner. In simple terms, export of engineering goods/services on deferred payment terms which lead to execution of turnkey projects including civil construction works abroad are collectively referred to as Project Exports.

The Government of India’s Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) has been making its global mark across the UK, Canada and South-East Asia with its unique business model.

Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), under the administration of Ministry of Power, government of India, is working towards mainstreaming energy efficiency and is implementing the world’s largest energy efficiency portfolio (worth £5.6bn over a period of three years). As of now, EESL has explored opportunities and commenced establishment of operations in the UK, Canada, South Asia and South-East Asia.

Tata Communications is at the heart of Formula 1 with a high-tech collaboration, writes a company insider.

F1 is the world’s most technologically advanced sport, and one where every millisecond matters. Whether it’s transmitting data from one of the hundreds of sensors on an F1 car back to the pits, or delivering the action in real-time via an online feed to millions of fans around the world, in this high-pressure, high-tech environment, superfast connectivity is critical.

From a non-existent base 40 years ago, the Indian auto industry has come a long way, writes an industry expert.

Today, India is one of the largest auto industries in the world with an annual production of 25.3 million vehicles, significantly above conventional automotive superpowers such as the US (17.5 million vehicles) and the EU (12.6 million vehicles). The sector directly contributes $97 billion to the Indian economy with automobiles contributing $58 billion and the automotive component sector contributing $39 billion.

An industry expert weighs up this question against data that reflects that nearly 40 to 50 per cent of the $40-billion turnover of the auto component industry comes from the internal combustion (IC) engine powertrain industry.

A rapidly changing powertrain technology landscape, stricter regulations, shifting customer preferences, increasing demand for connectivity and digitisation have become important factors for shaping the future of mobility. The Niti Aayog recently unveiled the vision document for the Indian automotive industry ‘India Leaps Ahead – Transformative Mobility solutions for all’, jointly authored by Rocky Mountain Institute.

The Indian PM’s visit to Washington will be crucial to determine how much the US President is in a mood to listen.

The Indian political leadership has, since Independence, rooted for a multi-polar world. Now, with Donald Trump’s US voluntarily pulling back from its role as world’s peace keeper of last resort, India is close to being granted its 70-year-old wish.

One of the European Union’s (EU) leading economies sets out what makes it the right gateway to Europe for Indian companies.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was only in Berlin for 24 hours on May 30, but the wake of his visit has left little doubt as to how important India is to Germany and the EU. German Chancellor Angela Merkel used a joint appearance in front of a business audience to emphasise that agreeing an EU-India free trade agreement (FTA) would be a priority.

The Indian Prime Minister was on a packed tour of Germany, Spain, Russia and France in May/June and has returned with a slew of agreements and promising pacts for the future.

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Berlin at the start of his European tour, the term used to describe the visit was the opening of a “new chapter” in the bilateral relations between India and Germany.

The PM set off for his meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at her country retreat of Schloss Meseberg soon after landing. Both leaders discussed issues of mutual interest in an informal setting over dinner at the 18th century palace, 50 miles north-west of Berlin.

An investment in Germany is an investment in a country that strives to create and explore opportunities within even the smallest niches, claims Germany Trade & Invest (GTAI), the economic development agency of the Federal Republic of Germany, in an attempt to woo more Indian investments.

When Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visits Israel in July, not only will he be bringing the otherwise warm relationship between the two countries out of the closet, he will also be marking the 25th anniversary of the establishment of formal and full-fledged diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Modi’s visit, the first by an Indian Prime Minister to Israel, also marks the decisive de-hyphening of the relationship with India’s traditional support for the Palestine cause. Modi will not be visiting Palestine to “balance” India’s perceived tilt towards the Jewish state. This is causing angst among India’s chic left-wing ivory tower intellectuals who had, till recently, dictated India’s Middle East policy and aligned it firmly with Palestine’s interests.

The Indian Ambassador based in Tel Aviv, Pavan Kapoor, is well-placed to provide some context to Narendra Modi’s historic visit to Israel in July – the first by an Indian Prime Minister.

Please give us an overview of where Indo-Israel ties stand.

I think India-Israel relations are on a very good wicket, at the political and economic level and also the cultural and people to people level. We have not had this scale of high level contact between the two countries for many years. In the last couple of years, we have had Heads of State visiting from India and Israel and we have had several ministerial delegations on either side.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s policy of renewing and redefining India’s millennia-old civilisational bonds with the Middle East are bearing concrete fruit in the form of strategic alliances and investments in India’s infrastructure sector.

Mention the Middle East to an Indian and he will immediately associate it with oil, deserts, Dubai and, very possibly, a non-resident relative stationed there. None of the above provides a misleading picture of the region; equally, none of them paints the complete picture either.

Prime Minister Modi’s historic visit to Israel has set the course for core areas of collaboration between the two countries, writes India Inc. CEO Manoj Ladwa.

Historic, as we said last week, is a much misused word these days, but to describe Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s just concluded visit to Israel in any other way will be to miss the woods for the trees.

That’s because the two countries signed several agreements that can substantially change the lives of long-suffering class of Indians – farmers. It is not without reason that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said: “This is a marriage made in heaven; it is being celebrated on earth.”

Take the look at the range of the seven agreements signed:

  • Setting up an India-Israel Industrial R&D fund
  • Water conservation
  • Water utility reform in India
  • India-Israel Development Cooperation on Agriculture
  • Cooperation on atomic clocks
  • Setting up a Geo-Leo optical link
  • Cooperation on electric propulsion and small satellites


Notice: three of the seven agreements deal with water and agriculture development signaling that Modi is spending his hard-earned global goodwill on the uplift of Indian farmers.

Many of you may be unaware that significant parts of India are facing a water scarcity. In such a situation, Indian farmers must learn to grow greater amounts of crops using lesser amounts of water.

Israeli agricultural scientists have developed and mastered the science of drip irrigation, which has turned their once arid country – among the driest in the world – into a haven for farmers.

It is this technology that a government-to-government programme is transferring to Indian farmers to enable them to produce “more crop per drop”. The two countries have so far set up 15 Centres of Excellence in Agriculture as part of the India-Israel Agricultural Project, which is a three-way collaboration between the Government of India, the Government of Israel and an Indian state.

It is this collaboration that has enabled Indian farmers develop blooming mango orchards in semi-arid Haryana and thriving vegetable nurseries in the not-so-fertile regions of Gujarat.

These centres are also helping farmers in Bihar grow and improve yields of fruits such as lychee and mango, in Karnataka of pomegranates, mangoes and vegetables and in West Bengal of vegetables by providing seeds developed with the help of the latest agricultural technologies and by imparting knowledge on the best farming techniques, thereby, enabling Indian farmers to increase their incomes and improve their lives.

If the Modi-Netanyahu duo can facilitate this potentially dramatic change for half of India’s population, they will have changed the face of Indian society. Eleven more such centres will be built in future.

Then, an Israeli company will help clean a particularly dirty stretch of the River Yamuna where 8 km of sewage flows into the river and help restore the life of the now dying river.

Prime Minister Modi has promised to double farmer incomes by 2022. A much wider use of these latest Israeli farm technologies and procedures will almost certainly play a big role in helping the government meet that ambitious goal.

The visit also focussed on other core areas of concern to the two countries – such as security from terror and the deep defence relationship.

Here, to my mind are the five key takeaways from Modi’s visit to Israel:
  1. India and Israel agreed to elevate bilateral ties to the level of a strategic partnership, with a special focus on agricultural cooperation.
  2. The two sides agreed to protect each other’s strategic interests.
  3. The two Prime Ministers emphasised the importance of ensuring global peace. “Our talks focused on not just areas of bilateral opportunities but also how our cooperation can help cause of global peace and stability,” Modi said.
  4. Both nations will collaborate on cyber security and exchange knowledge and best practices to tackle terrorism in cyberspace.
  5. The personal chemistry that was evident between Modi and Netanyahu over the three days.


Manoj Ladwa is the founder of India Inc. and chief executive of MLS Chase Group @manojladwa

Politically and strategically, Israel is India’s most trusted ally in West Asia, writes a political senior columnist.

Twenty-five years ago, in 1992, India and Israel formally established full diplomatic relations and exchanged ambassadors. In 2003, Ariel Sharon, Israel’s prime minister at the time, travelled to India, becoming the first head of government from Tel Aviv to do so. This month, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will become the first Indian prime minister to visit Israel.

If defence and security cooperation forms the bedrock of Indo-Israeli ties, then collaboration on agriculture is, without doubt, the second most important sphere of the bilateral relationship. Here is a snapshot of the breadth of the bilateral relationship.

Anuj Rakyan is the founder and Managing Director of Raw Pressery, India’s first cold-pressed juice company. From an idea born out of his kitchen to being on the cusp of taking India’s raw and unprocessed products global, the 37-year-old shares his journey with ‘India Global Business’.

What in your view makes Raw Pressery a start-up success?

While experimenting on creating an honestly healthy beverage, I focused on simplicity and applied the philosophy of All Good, No Bad. The team and I have been driven by this philosophy to bridge the gap between healthy and tasty by making products that we as consumers would choose to buy.

A leading consultant in the field delves into India’s move towards embracing good corporate governance.

Good corporate governance is becoming a priority across the world. An OECD report to G20 finance ministers and central bank governors in 2015 begins as follows: “Good corporate governance is not an end in itself. It is a means to create market confidence and business integrity, which in turn is essential for companies that need access to equity capital for long-term investment.”

Two Indian projects made the cut among six worldwide winners of this year’s prestigious Whitley Awards, dubbed the Green Oscars for their celebration of animal and bird conservation in developing countries.

Two Indian activists were singled out for their work in preserving birds and animals in the country’s remote areas and won the annual Whitley Awards.

Dr Jyotsna Suri is a stalwart in the Indian hotel industry, who recently expanded her group’s footprint to the UK with The Lalit London. ‘India Global Business’ caught up with this jet-setting Global Indian to get her views on Indian hospitality and its worldwide impact.

Please give your overview on the Indian hotel industry and its growth patterns over recent years.

The Indian hotel industry has been on an upswing in the last few years. The improvement in infrastructure and increase in spending power has resulted in growth of domestic travel as well as influx of inbound travel. Tourism growth has outpaced the GDP growth in the last few years, and this trend is projected to continue.

Tel Aviv is the financial hub of Israel on the Mediterranean coastline. As the country’s tech hub, the city is known for its zest for life and as the place that never sleeps. Narendra Modi will become the first Indian Prime Minister to visit this city in July.

The love for foreign education among upwardly mobile Indians is not new, but with the economy prospering and domestic education not keeping pace with aspirations, it has turned into a near obsession.

Every year, more than 250,000 students venture out of India in search of better education in universities in the US, Europe, South East Asia and Australia. These numbers makes India the country with the highest student mobility in tertiary education after China. It should not necessarily come as a surprise. China and India are by far, the two most populous countries in the world. So the high numbers — over 800,000 Chinese students too try their luck in education outside their country every year — is a factor of demography.

India is among the major success stories of the ‘BRICS and Emerging Economies University Rankings 2017’, with 27 institutions making the top 300.

The definitive rankings for the emerging economies, compiled annually by ‘Times Higher Education’, reflects India’s efforts to be counted as a viable education hub seem to be paying off.

China is the clear frontrunner with 52 universities in the ‘BRICS and Emerging Economies University Rankings 2017’ but India was credited with making significant strides.

India has historically had close economic ties with the Arabian Peninsula, especially the Gulf region along its eastern shores, writes a banking expert.

The first historically recorded maritime trade route in the world was, in fact, between the Indus Valley civilisation and the civilisation of Dilmun, which was located on the island of Bahrain and the adjacent shore of Saudi Arabia. Goods, including cotton and spices, were acquired by merchants from Dilmun.

The US withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accord will not have much impact on the fight against global warming as India and others take the lead in embracing renewable energy.

Just as US President Donald Trump’s repudiation of the Trans Pacific Partnership provided Chinese President Xi Jinping the opportunity to present himself as the prime defender of the globalised trading order, the US walkout of the Paris Climate Pact has presented Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi the rare chance of presenting India as the leader of the global fight against climate change.

US President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris Accord may be a chance for India to shine, writes an energy expert.

Trump’s pullout from the Paris Accord on climate change has brought India to the fore. Two claims are especially puzzling. One, the treaty lets India (and China) not do much till 2030, and that India is looking for developed countries to pay them $2.5 trillion for its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). India’s NDC calculations were taken with their own calculations, and have very little to do with the US (or any other country).

The British General Election of 2017 was intended to provide stability and certainty, but it did not go according to plan.

Theresa May asked the country for a resounding personal mandate to strengthen her in the Brexit negotiations – but the public refused it, confounding expectations of a clear Conservative victory in this early General Election.

When politicians misjudge the public mood and gamble, the end result can be politically catastrophic. In that sense, the UK election results are nothing short of a political earthquake – the second one to hit the UK in 10 months.

Just as David Cameron had misread the public mood in Britain when he called for the Brexit vote, Theresa May’s decision to go back to the people a full three years before her term as Her Majesty’s First Minister was to expire has also proved to be a grave political miscalculation.

India’s strong economic fundamentals, low inflation and interest rates on a declining trend are ideal for bond investors, writes a financial markets expert.

London & Partners, the Mayor of London’s official business development company, has long been focusing on attracting inward investments into London, which is arguably the cultural and business capital of the world. This initiative, which started well before Brexit, sought to reinforce London as the gateway between America and Asia. It could become very important for London if it loses access to the Passport to European Financial after the UK exits the European Union (EU).

Indian project exports are gradually gaining scale by winning increasingly bigger contracts with a little help from the Indian government.

When spectators troop in to watch the likes of Lionel Messi match his skills against Neymar in the 2022 World Cup Football tournament in Qatar, India will have an unseen presence in the 40,000-seat Al Rayan Stadium.

A Reuters report recently said Indian contractor Larsen & Toubro (L&T) has won the $135-million contract, through a joint venture, to build the stadium that will host some important matches for the 2022 football World Cup.

India’s Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Arun Jaitley, just completed a packed tour of the UK during which Prime Minister Theresa May dropped in to a Downing Street meeting with his British counterpart, Chancellor Philip Hammond. ‘India Investment Journal’ caught up with the senior Indian Cabinet minister in London to explore his message for foreign investors, a possible free trade agreement (FTA) with post-Brexit Britain and the next phase of his dramatic reform agenda for the Indian economy.

A US Federal Reserve report forecasts that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) has the potential to hike India’s GDP by nearly $100 billion.

The US Federal Reserve has confirmed what many people, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, have been saying for a long time.

Countering nay-sayers, they have maintained that the Goods & Services Tax (GST), which will come into force from July 1 this year, will push India into a higher growth trajectory and improve India’s GDP growth rate to 8 per cent and beyond.

Now, an International Financial Discussion Paper (IFDP) at the US Federal Reserve (FED) has calculated that the rollout of GST could increase India’s GDP by Rs 6.5 lakh crore ($100 billion) or 4.2 per cent. It did not mention the time frame by which this will be achieved. The additional output is almost double the government’s borrowing programme of Rs 3.48 lakh crore ($54 billion) for the current financial year.

From a silent film set to the tunes of the sitar at the Taj Mahal to a travelling exhibition celebrating Indian achievements in science, this year promises to take India-UK cultural collaboration to a whole new level.

The Taj Mahal will form the backdrop of a rare screening of a silent film set to live music by sitar maestro Anoushka Shankar as part of a wide range of celebrations to mark UK India Year of Culture 2017.

The Europe chief of the world's largest outsourcing and technology services specialist for diplomatic missions worldwide gives his insight on the India-UK travel landscape.

As we celebrate 2017 as the UK-India Year of Culture alongside the 70th anniversary of Indian independence, travel between the UK and India is thriving like never before. Britain is the largest G20 investor in India – with a total inflow of $23.12 billion, while India invests more in the UK than it does in the rest of the European Union (EU) combined. There are over 100 flights from India to Britain a week, with over 30,000 seats capacity. Such powerful and deep links between the two countries make smooth, seamless and simple travel essential.

‘Winning Partnership’ edited by Manoj Ladwa, takes a fresh 360 degree look at a 400-year-old relationship and comes up with several interesting suggestions for keeping it relevant in the 21st century.

What can you say after everything has already been said? Not much, right? Wrong.

With so much literature on UK’s relationship with the former jewel in its crown, it takes a very intrepid intellectual to gather all his bravery to attempt to shed new light on the subject.

‘India Global Business’ analyses UK-India relations and identifies key areas of cooperation that the two countries must build upon and key areas of divergence that they must bridge in order to fulfil the potential of the relationship.

The potential of the relationship is massive, but India and the UK are barely scratching the surface. The optimism that the two countries would sign a trade deal in the immediate aftermath of Brexit and signal closer all round ties has waned considerably but leaders and analysts on both sides remain confident about the future.

Now that Mrs May has triggered formal divorce proceedings with the EU, India Inc. CEO Manoj Ladwa explains how the UK could learn a lesson or two from the Japanese on getting up close to Modi's India.

The late Sir James Goldsmith, the billionaire financier who spent a considerable part of his personal fortune on a campaign to force Great Britain out of the European Union, once famously said: “When a man marries his mistress, he creates a job vacancy.”

A Dealmaker for the British government does some tough-talking to explain the secret behind clinching a good deal.

For the past decade as the UK government’s Dealmaker within UKTI’s [UK Trade and Investment] Global Entrepreneur Programme, I have been responsible for bringing the most innovative young companies from India, China and South East Asia to the UK. I have had an unusual insight into what help they need, and a lot of success in helping them do it, so I’ve put together some of my thoughts for those of you looking to make UK connections and secure that expansion deal.

Suma Chakrabarti has been charged with one of Europe’s leading development banks for five years and has spent considerable energy in striking a strong connect with India. Sir Suma tells ‘India Global Business’ how Indian companies can take the lead in re-defining the world’s development agenda.

What is your bank’s engagement with India like?

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) already works with a number of Indian companies in our countries of operation and we want to engage even more with the Indian private sector.

We have shown the way with Indian companies in our region. We have brought in Tata Beverages, Tata Power, the Jindal Group, SREI, among others, and they have all worked with us on projects in Russia, Georgia and other places.

There is a real opportunity for Indian businesses. When we look at the BRICS [Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa], very few of their companies are global leaders. One of the Interesting things about India is that it does have some global names.

There is a real opportunity for India with this shift in development practice towards more of a private sector approach to be first and through the door.

As many as 800 Indian companies in the UK generated £47.5 billion in combined revenues in 2016 and contributed significantly to Brexit-bound UK’s economic growth outlook, a new report reveals.

The ‘India meets Britain Tracker 2017’, released annually by professional services major Grant Thornton in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), has found that Indian companies employ around 110,000 employees in the UK and last year had a combined capital expenditure of £4.25 billion.

Britain’s minister in charge of international trade makes the case for an open global trading order with the Commonwealth as its cornerstone.

I hosted the inaugural Commonwealth Trade Ministers’ Meeting, an event that brought together politicians, officials and policymakers from over twenty Commonwealth nations.

It is a testament to the strength of the Commonwealth that so many of its countries were represented at this landmark meeting, during which we discussed the opportunities for trade, investment, and enhanced friendship that lie ahead.

Our cover story this time is aptly titled 'Yeh Dosti'. Indian readers will be familiar with the eponymous song from the iconic Bollywood blockbuster 'Sholay', which, even 42 years after its release, remains synonymous with undying friendship and renewal of relationships.

To dwell a little further on the renewal analogy, here in the UK, we have the custom of spring cleaning, where in anticipation of sunny times, and coming out of the winter months, we clear out the clutter and put our house in order.

The tide of history has brought India and the UK to such a turn in the road. Coincidentally, PM Narendra Modi’s vision of embracing globalisation to expand India’s economy and realise its ambitions of taking its rightful place at the global high table has some resonance with PM Theresa May’s ambition of a post-Brexit "Global Britain".

There are, or will emerge, vast areas of synergies the two countries can exploit for mutual benefit as well as for the greatest common good of all humanity. Or, in Narendra Modi’s language: “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas”.

But it will not be a straight and easy road. The challenge is to prevent the relationship from becoming transactional. There will always be the clear and present danger that we may have become too comfortable, and mistakenly assume that cultural affinity and a centuries-old bond will survive the ravages of a rapidly churning world order.

India and the UK need to re-imagine the relationship, re-calibrate the scales by which we judge proximity and warmth and do it fast.

Trade is the obvious area of synergy. India is the third-largest source of FDI into the UK and the UK is the largest G20 investor in India. Despite this, UK trades more with Sweden, which has a GDP that’s just about a fourth of India’s, than with India.

We can obviously do better. And, despite my view that the UK should have remained in the EU, Brexit could just offer that opportunity.

A renewed relationship also means May’s government must show greater empathy for Indian demands for concessions on immigration, as higher education for its youth and free movement of its professionals are key to keeping the wheels of its services-dependent economy greased. At the same time, India must accept the compulsions of Her Majesty’s government to respect the Brexit sentiment, which was, in essence, a vote against untrammelled immigration.

But movement has been slow. For instance, several months ago Britain's international trade minister, Dr Liam Fox, announced a working group to start pencilling in the contours of a new post-Brexit trade and investment relationship with India. This is a welcome step forward. But we must avoid bureaucratic fudges. Its work must be open, transparent, and allow a wide cross-section of stakeholders to engage in a meaningful manner.

Modi has called the Indian diaspora in the UK the “living bridge” between the two countries and has actively sought to engage them in the process of bilateral cooperation. But does the DTI or British High Commission in India have a strategy for diaspora engagement?

Taking a leaf from Modi’s book, May’s government, too, can reach out to this living bridge – and the ongoing India-UK Year of Culture presents just the right platform.

My fabulous team has made a small beginning by recognising and celebrating the achievements of such people with the India Inc. curated 'UK India 100' list of most influential people.

The potential is there for all to see. The tide is right and if May and Modi can take it at the flood, it can lead on to a great future for both countries.

History is replete with examples of individual leaders transcending their situations to lead their countries to ever greater heights. In the UK and India alone, there are examples such as Winston Churchill, Mahatma Gandhi and, potentially, Modi himself.

Can he and May move to the melody of 'Yeh Dosti'? If they do, they will have re-written the future of UK-India ties in golden letters.

Manoj Ladwa is the founder of India Inc. and chief executive of MLS Chase Group @manojladwa

Carbon capture and storage is a field India and the UK have great potential to collaborate on, writes the founder of a clean carbon company.

The UK and India have a history of collaboration when it comes to energy, something which looks set to continue for the foreseeable future. Notably, ahead of the November 2015 Paris climate summit, the two countries penned a comprehensive package of collaboration on energy and climate change, including commercial deals worth £3.2 billion, and a £10-million joint research partnership into new low-carbon technologies.

It may be time to anoint New Delhi as a hub for a reimagined Commonwealth, writes India Inc. CEO Manoj Ladwa.

This week the Commonwealth Secretariat has launched a report which claims that if the UK and India sign a Free Trade Agreement (FTA), this could boost bilateral trade by a staggering 26 per cent. I am somewhat sceptical about the speed at which an FTA could be agreed and the figures. But nonetheless any moves in this direction is positive. It is also here that the larger canvas of the Commonwealth could provide a fillip to a much more meaningful UK-India relationship of the future. There are, however, some practical and emotional hurdles to overcome before we get there.

For instance, India has been Independent for 70 years but even now some quarters in the country are still very prickly when it comes to discussions on the colonial era and India’s relations with the UK. Fortunately, such mindsets are fast becoming a thing of the past as the post-Cold War, post-9/11, post-Brexit world gets set for the next big challenges.

As one of the former colonies that has, especially with the rise of Modi – India’s first Prime Minister to be born after India’s independence – made a decisive break with the past, India has in my view everything to gain and very little, if anything, to lose from this approach. The Commonwealth could be one such institution that can become a vehicle to drive large parts of the world into the 21st century.

Though there is an urgent need to reimagine it, not as Empire 2.0 as some misguided apologists for the past have done in Britain but as a modern, forward-looking trade bloc that can help its members navigate through the choppy and highly complex waters of the global economy.

I have consistently argued that the UK has to do much of the heavy lifting following Brexit. This may be a good time to put its considerable global heft and prestige behind the move to reform and reinvigorate the Commonwealth and reimagine it as a global trading platform fit for the 21st century and beyond. It is for Her Majesty’s government to convince India, by far the largest Commonwealth member, to become its partner in the process. It is the world’s fastest growing major economy and clearly the nation to watch out for in this century. But over the years, India has viewed the Commonwealth with less than full enthusiasm.

Today, though, the world is a different place. In the era of Donald Trump and with winds of isolationism gathering pace in some Western democracies, India's global aspirations and its far-sighted and global minded leader Narendra Modi stand out as a bellwether in the global community.

Given his penchant for getting things done and for carrying other countries along – as he did with the International Solar Alliance – the place to start would be New Delhi.

To re-imagine the Commonwealth, the following steps need to be taken:

  • Recognition of a rebalancing and redistribution of power within the Commonwealth – not just India, but in key countries like Nigeria, Australia, Canada, Singapore and the East African economies
  • Structural reform with some stronger weightage placed on India from an administrative perspective
  • Anoint New Delhi as the hub or head office of the Commonwealth trading bloc
  • Re-imagining the shared values and shared aspirations on the lines of Modi’s inclusive Sabka Ka Saath, Sabka Vikas credo as large swathes of the Commonwealth remain impoverished
  • The fight against poverty must take centre-stage, not through lecturing but real programmes, such as the export of the Jan Dhan Yojana, India’s highly successful financial inclusion scheme.

Frankly, however, the often referred to issue in the corridors of Lutyens Delhi remains the future role of British monarchy. Having the Queen as the non-political ceremonial head of the Commonwealth has historically served it well, no doubt. And, in my view it is probably not as big an issue as some make it out to be, but the relationship between Prince Charles and Modi will play an important role in the emergence of the Commonwealth in the coming decades. The fact that the two men, who will find they have a lot in common, have not yet met, is one thing that needs to be rectified, and rectified quick.

The advantages are obvious and massive – a readymade, English speaking bloc straddling every continent of the world, with common or similar legal and other systems, a combined GDP of $10.4 trillion or 14 per cent of global GDP and a population of 2.4 billion or a third of the world.

The opportunity beckons. Does Mrs May’s government have the nimbleness to pick up the threads and weave it into a fabric?

That’s the 10-billion-dollar question.

Manoj Ladwa is the founder of India Inc. and chief executive of MLS Chase Group @manojladwa

Baroness Usha Prashar straddles the worlds of politics and arts with comfort and ease. ‘India Global Business’ explores what being a Global Indian means to her.

How would you say the India-UK dynamic has evolved over the years?

India and UK have always had a special relationship but like any relationship it has had its ups and downs. In recent years the relationship has matured. India has become important economically and the relationship is beginning to change.

There is now much more reciprocity and a recognition that the relationship has to be based on equal footing. It is gaining a different dynamic. India @ 70 is more confident and its 70th anniversary is being marked by the UK India Year of Culture.

Automation in the global IT industry threatens to disrupt the sector in -India but it may be a blessing in heavy disguise. For the stagnant industry, robots may pave the way for the next round of growth.

On March 19, news reports suggested Cognizant, the New-Jersey headquartered software services firm may fire between 6,000-10,000 workers in its bid to reduce redundant and non-performing workers. As the news spread and doomsday predictions started ringing, the firm’s spokesperson sought to cool frayed nerves stating this was part of the company’s annual appraisal process when the bad apples are weeded out.

A corporate governance expert explores what transparency really means for businesses.

An organisation that delivers credible and timely information for all its stakeholders is transparent. Such information provides critical insights regarding the performance of a company and therefore it is imperative that companies have a disclosure mechanism in place.

Certain kinds of information are required by regulators and other kinds by investors and other stakeholders. In fact, those working in the area of corporate governance, often use the terms transparency and disclosure as if they were synonyms. There is a fine line though.

A tech expert traces India’s journey from an outsourcing hub of the 1990s to an innovation destination of today.

When I first became aware of the Indian tech sector in 1993, India would have been the least likely candidate to be named an innovation hub. Back then, and for many years, it was known more as a place where you could outsource your software development at low cost. Or in manufacturing, as the then secretary of department of electronics used to tell me, it was becoming known for ‘screwdriver assembly’, whereby product kits were imported and then assembled in India for either local consumption or re-export.

Vivek Gambhir is Managing Director, Godrej Consumer Products Limited (GCPL), and the key architect of the firm s 3x3 strategy to drive international expansion. He talks ‘India Global Business’ through the strategy and the consumer giant’s over-arching goals with a specific eye on emerging markets like Africa.

How would you describe GCPL's Africa strategy and how does it fit into the 3X3 plans?

Over the past few years, we have been scaling up our international presence with acquisitions that fit well in our “3 by 3” strategy – a presence in emerging markets in Asia, Africa and Latin America through three core categories – hair care, home care and personal care. These strategic acquisitions have strongly aided our growth story. Through them, we have both extended our core businesses and implicitly broadened our presence to a wider canvas.

Establishing a strong foothold in Africa is a key part of our strategy, both in terms of business size today, as well as potential for the future. Africa contributes 31 per cent of our revenues from international businesses, with annualised revenues of $200 million. We now have a growing business presence in South Africa, Mozambique, Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Uganda, Tanzania and Angola in the hair extensions, hair cosmetics, hair colours, household insecticides and personal wash categories.

Our expert explains why a sedentary office-bound lifestyle is like a ticking time bomb and how yoga therapy can help counter the effects on our joints.

Studies suggest we are all sitting for an average of 5.5 hours a day. We then go home and sit for a further 2.5-4 hours. The development of Osteoarthritic (joint wear & tear) conditions are a direct result of such a lifestyle.

The management of such low to medium grade conditions is through medication such as Ibuprofen and Celebrex, which are NSAIDS (non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory) medicines and help to manage chronic and acute pain. But they are also known to increase the prevalence of major cardio vascular incidence by as much as 37 per cent. This could be in the form of a stroke or a heart attack.

India is a crucial partner for South Africa’s economy which offers enormous trade and investment opportunities, writes an expert from the region.

South Africa and India relations are enjoying an unprecedented renaissance, founded on shared economic interests and longstanding historical ties since the latter lifted economic sanctions against South Africa after the end of apartheid.

Both countries are major players in the global economy and share a common vision of shaping the development agenda through multilateral engagements such as the Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa (BRICS) and the India, Brazil, South Africa (IBSA), and other related platforms.

Johannesburg is not only the biggest city in South Africa but also considered its vibrant heart. Often referred to as Jo’burg for short, the city has been home to world leaders like Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu and is also famous as Mahatma Gandhi’s inspiration for Satyagraha.

As the Donald Trump administration begins to deliver on his poll promise of cracking down on the alleged misuse of H1B visas, Indian IT companies are feeling the pinch.

Donald Trump’s election rhetoric is returning to bite the Indian IT sector as policy formulations of the new US administration.

First, here are some updates on the bad news on H1B visas, the visa category mainly used by Indian IT companies to ship Indian IT professionals to the US.

The chief of one of India’s leading trade bodies, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), traces some of the lesser known facts behind India’s positive impact on the US economy in this ‘India Global Business’ exclusive.

Over the past two decades, the bilateral partnership between India and the United States had grown in leaps and bounds. Looking back at the trajectory of the relationship, we have truly come a long way – from the cloud of suspicion that hung after India conducted its nuclear tests in the 1990s to the landmark US-India civil nuclear agreement in 2006 – which helped spur sustained engagements at the very highest levels – till today and the establishment of an array of official dialogues encompassing all aspects of our bilateral relationship.

A London-based policy expert weighs up the challenges and opportunities thrown up by Brexit to strike a stronger India-UK dynamic.

Talk of Brexit is never far from the headlines in the UK press. Theresa May triggering Article 50 signaled the start of the process. This presents significant challenges and opportunities for Commonwealth countries, with India being a prime example.

New research from my organisation, the Royal Commonwealth Society, reveals an overwhelming majority of British businesses want to see the Government prioritise trade deals with the Commonwealth. It is significant that nearly three quarters of all UK businesses want an Indian trade deal.

‘India Global Business’ caught up with India’s minister of state for External Affairs, M.J. Akbar, during a recent London visit to attend the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) meeting.

The Commonwealth must become more people-centric and find ways of creating meaning for the citizens of the 52 member countries, India’s minister of state for external affairs M.J. Akbar believes.

In his message at the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG), the minister also highlighted India's hope that the organisation will work towards increasing the things it has in common.

As the number of Indian students coming to study at UK universities continues to register a drop, a new report reveals just what Britain stands to lose.

International students coming to study at UK universities are worth over 25 billion pounds to the British economy, found new research released today.

The latest analysis titled ‘The Economic Impact of International Students’, conducted for representative organisation Universities UK by Oxford Economics, shows that in 2014-15 spending by international students supported 206,600 jobs in university towns and cities across the UK.

François-Philippe Champagne is Canada’s Minister for International Trade with over 20 years’ experience working for major companies worldwide. ‘India Global Business’ caught up with the minister soon after the inaugural Commonwealth Trade Ministers Meeting in London recently to explore the potential of India-Canada ties within a broader multilateral context.

What is the status of the Canada-India free trade agreement?

The negotiation of the Canada-India Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) began in November 2010. Nine rounds of negotiations have been held to date; the latest of which was in March 2015. And, last fall, my predecessor, Chrystia Freeland, met with her Indian counterpart, Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, during the 3rd Ministerial Dialogue on Trade and Investment in Toronto.

India holds the key to taking the Commonwealth lead in sustainable solutions for development.

We face an immense global challenge of developing sustainably. We know climate change already contributes to migration and conflict. Some Commonwealth countries are unable to generate the economic growth they badly need to become more resilient. In contrast, India has developed successfully into the world’s seventh largest economy, and third largest by purchasing power parity, hence increasingly a world leader in economic growth.

It is time for the Commonwealth to introspect on its role for the 21st century and look at adding new members and acquiring a sharper financial focus.

As a British citizen of Indian origin born in Uganda, I enjoy a triple connection with the Commonwealth. I was therefore drawn towards speaking in a recent debate on the Commonwealth in the House of Lords — almost like a magnetic field.

The Commonwealth held a first-of-its-kind trade ministers’ meet recently to inject much-needed vigour into the organisation. The man behind the summit writes exclusively for ‘India Global Business’.

The inaugural Commonwealth Trade Ministers Meeting (CTTM) on 9th March 2017 was an important moment for the Commonwealth. As many as 35 trade ministers from across the world, including Australia, Bangladesh, Canada, Kenya, Malaysia, Malta, New Zealand, Nigeria, Singapore, South Africa and the UK, came together not just for the sake of old ties, but to consider how the network can build an “Agenda for Growth” that will challenge economic stagnation and a growing protectionist clamour in global markets.

The northern part of the United Kingdom is making a strong case for Indian businesses to choose Scotland as a base for their UK expansion plans.

Scotland’s people are famous for the warmth of their welcome. Home to just over five million people, it is estimated that for every person living in Scotland, another five people living across the world have Scottish ancestry. With such close and extensive connections to every corner of the world, it is no wonder that overseas visitors to Scotland are made to feel like they are returning home!

Nicola Sturgeon is the outspoken First Minister of Scotland who has been campaigning for a voice for Scotland in the post-Brexit scenario. Her call for a second referendum on Scotland’s independence from the United Kingdom has raised the spectre of a new kind of exit – Scotland’s exit from the UK (Scexit).

Nicola Ferguson Sturgeon is the first woman to become leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) and First Minister of Scotland, a post created in 1999 when the Scottish Parliament was reconvened following a referendum in support of devolution from the UK in 1997.

There are seemingly insurmountable hurdles in the path of reinventing the Commonwealth as a multilateral free trade bloc but the potential upsides could make it a proposal worth pursuing.

There is a superstition in some parts of India which posits that inauspicious beginnings beget the best outcomes. If this proposition contains even a grain of empirical truth, then the proposal to reimagine the 52-nation Commonwealth as a 21st century trading bloc couldn’t have got off to a better start.

In the run-up to the Commonwealth Trade Ministers’ Meeting in London in March, an unnamed British official dubbed the discussion in some circles to reimagine the Commonwealth as a trade bloc as “Empire 2.0” – exactly the kind of language that raises the hackles of people in the former colonies.

Cyber Security is the protection of information assets, which are highly valuable to an organisation, writes a security expert.

In the early days of the internet, Cyber Security wasn't of importance since most computers linked to the internet were part of academia, where trust played a major role. In addition, traditional networking wasn't secure by design, and did not encompass elements of security.

As the internet grew, organisations started realising the efficiency and productivity the internet brought, and applications and software were developed. The vast repository of information, and ability to cause damage sitting anywhere in the world, led to a proliferation in the number of cyber attacks.

The comprehensive strategic partnership between New Delhi and Hanoi is playing an important role in ensuring balance of power in Asia

Rarely, if ever, does India weigh heavily on the minds of foreign leaders when they meet their counterparts from third countries. But when Chinese President Xi Jinping recently met Communist Party of Vietnam’s General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong in Beijing, seasoned observers could sense that New Delhi was the invisible elephant in the room.

Outbound FDI from India will increasingly be driven by a need to fill knowledge and product gaps aimed at the domestic market.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has greased the wheels of the investment cycle with allocations of almost $90 billion for building roads, railway infrastructure, inland waterways, ports, airports and rural infrastructure for 2017-18. This massive public spending spree, marking a humungous increase over the figures for the current year, is expected to translate into large contracts for Indian and foreign companies.

Donald Trump and his fellow travellers in Europe are doing their countries a disservice by recklessly pulling up the drawbridge on immigration.

Everyone knows that whenever their fortresses and castles came under siege, kings of old would pass the order to pull up the drawbridges and every able man would take up position to repel the invaders. And most of you will be familiar with the story of Don Quixote, the fictional medieval Spanish nobleman, who attacked windmills under the delusion that they were dangerous enemies.

Combine these two narratives and you get a very disturbing picture of the present and the future.

An assertive China presents Prime Minister Modi with his most intractable foreign policy challenge, but there are indications that Beijing may be getting a little edgy.

China considered itself to be a rival of the US. In its world view, India was a regional player, at best the first among equals in South Asia.

David vs Goliath

In absolute terms, there is some merit in this argument. China’s $11.4-trillion economy, the world’s second largest, is five times India’s, which is world’s sixth largest, with a GDP of $2.3 trillion in 2016.

Last year, China’s per capita income, at $8,260, was five times the comparable figure of $1,718 for India. It is the world’s largest manufacturer of goods, its biggest trading nation and its military budget, at $131 billion is more than three times larger than India’s annual defence spending of $40 billion.

Asian equations, specially between the two giant economies of China and India will be in focus with the installation of Donald Trump as the 45th US president.

Trump’s belligerent ‘America First’ foreign and commercial policy stance, will in all likelihood, force China to curb its manufactured goods exports to the US, with whom it has a whopping and patently unsustainable trade surplus of nearly half a trillion dollars! It is unlikely that even US MNCs, which have huge export bases in China, could prevail upon Trump to not push back imports from China. This should push Chinese exporters to look for alternate markets during the next five to 10 years, during which China completes its planned switch to greater reliance on domestic consumption. India, with its growing and potentially large domestic markets and long track record of trade deficits, would offer a tempting opportunity for Chinese exporters looking to divert their exports and utilising their installed capacities.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has struck a delicate balance of engaging with China where there is mutual benefit and standing up to the South Asian neighbour where India’s strategic interests demand.

Dealing with China is arguably Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s most daunting foreign policy challenge. That’s because it is difficult to fit the Middle Kingdom into any of the comfortable stereotypes that Indian diplomats have got used to.

A foreign policy observer believes it is time for India to move towards a more flexible approach towards China.

It has been suggested that New Delhi’s bid for membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) was an “extraordinary exercise in realpolitik”, that the Indian government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi “is not easily rattled by disapproving noises at home or abroad”. One analyst referring to China’s opposition put it rather colourfully that Beijing behaved “not as an enlightened power but as a strategic small-timer, with the petty, perfidious and short-termist mindset of a Pyongyang dictator or a Rawalpindi general”.

Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw is a consistent presence on definitive global lists as one of the world’s most powerful women. As the Chairman and Managing Director of Biocon Limited, she is a trendsetter in the field of biotechnology in India. Here she takes time out for ‘India Global Business’ to give us an insight into her entrepreneurial drive and India’s own biotech journey.

Just days after Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th US President, there is much upheaval around his series of unilateral executive orders. There is yet another draft reportedly awaiting his signature, which could hit Indian professionals hard.

American billionaire Donald J. Trump marked his first days in the Oval Office in characteristic style by signing some of the most controversial executive orders in history.

The suspension of the US refugee programme for 120 days and a cap on 2017 numbers came alongside a ban on anyone arriving from seven Muslim-majority countries – Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The instant effect was felt at airports in the US and around the world, as people were stopped from boarding US-bound flights or held when they landed in the US.

One of India’s leading international businessmen traces the factors behind India’s natural instinct towards going global.

The question isn’t whether India can turn global; it is how quickly will India be accepted among the leading nations in the world.

Global trade and business is not new for India. The past is replete with examples of India’s contribution to world trade; in fact, India actually taught the world how to trade, be it spices or fibres or cotton yarn. In the year when the British came into India – India as a single entity accounted for 21 per cent of world trade. Great Britain was then doing one per cent of world trade. In 1947, when it left India, Britain was doing 21 per cent world trade and India made up 1 per cent!

India Inc. has envisioned its first-ever Go Global Expo & Conference 2017 as a hub for Indian companies on a decisive global expansion march as well as new start-ups ready for the leap. Here ‘India Global Business’ delves into the high-profile launch of the event in New Delhi.

There was a time barely two centuries ago, when India accounted for 21 per cent of global trade and Great Britain barely 1 per cent. At the height of the British Empire, this relative ratio had been turned on its head, with the United Kingdom as the most dominant trading nation in the world with more than a one-fifth share of world trade and India reduced to a peripheral player with only a 1 per cent share.

Pankaj Lal was among a handful of scientists to be honoured by outgoing US President Barack Obama with the Presidential Award. ‘India Global Business’ caught up with him to trace what led to this prestigious achievement and what being a Global Indian means to him.

What does an honour like the Presidential Award mean to you?

I am honoured and excited to receive this prestigious award. It’s always exciting for your peers to see the significant value in our work and for federal agencies to invest resources for this. This said, sharing the success with family, friends and students is the greatest reward.

Harnessing science for social good and developing sustainable energy and managing natural resources well are some of the grand challenges facing modern society, and I feel satisfied that that our work is contributing a bit towards improved understanding of this area. This award is a testament that hard work will be rewarded at the opportune moment, and will continue to keep me striving for more in the future.

The new Indian high commissioner to the UK believes India and the UK can work together towards a win-win visa regime.

“In the field of IT, our professionals are renowned the world over. It is very important that our IT professionals can come and work and go back. They will contribute immensely not only to the local economy but also the global economy, which is what they are doing in Silicon Valley and the rest of the world,” says the Indian high commissioner to the UK, Y.K. Sinha.

There are not too many countries towards whom the new United States President, Donald Trump, has shown a consistently friendly demeanour. India is one of them.

As Trump told Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his most recent phone conversation to New Delhi, he saw India as a “true friend”. India is seen, strategically, as a kindred spirit by President Trump and his team.

David Landsman is the Executive Director of Tata Limited and recently took charge as the Chair of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) India Business Forum (IBF) in the UK. He took time out for ‘India Global Business’ to talk about this new role, his wider perspective on post-Brexit India-UK ties and the need to address a decline in India’s exports to Britain.

What does the post-Brexit era hold for Indian companies looking at UK/Europe for expansion?

Over the past few years, more and more Indian companies have been expanding their activities in the UK and across Europe as part of their globalisation strategies. There is no doubt that there will continue to be important opportunities for Indian business, both in the UK and the rest of Europe. It is early days for Brexit and much remains to be clarified.

Delhi-headquartered logistics technology solutions company FarEye recently announced its foray into Europe as Belgium’s leading postal service, TBC Post, opted for its services. The CEO and co-founder tells ‘India Global Business’ what sets Indian tech solutions apart in the global marketplace.

The FarEye logistics technology solution is unique in that it is a home-grown technology product and solution combination that has gained global acceptance in a short period of three years.

Let me share what FarEye’s powerful mobile platform does. Our logistics technology solution digitalises enterprise operations by empowering field workforce. The solution includes intuitive dashboards that deliver real-time visibility to CXOs (corporate executives) to better serve their customers. This empowers the enterprises to build a competitive advantage by improving agility.

A new report released the UK’s Free Enterprise Group makes the case for Britain to prioritise free trade agreements (FTAs) with key Commonwealth nations like India following Brexit. ‘India Global Business’ explores the rationale behind this strategy.

‘Reconnecting with the Commonwealth: The UK’s free trade opportunities’, released by the British MPs led Free Enterprise Group, suggests a five-step plan for the UK government as it gets ready to leave the European Union (EU).

With Brexit around the corner, one of Britain’s neighbours is making a play for Indian investments as a member of the European Union (EU).

Ireland has a strong proposition for any company choosing to do business in Europe. A part of the European Union (EU), the country’s impressive offering includes large and small companies, MNCs and indigenous companies, universities and research institutes in the technology, ICT, life-sciences, financial services and advanced manufacturing sectors.

The Indian pharmaceutical industry is holding on to a sliver of hope that it could become the supplier of choice for the US market.

Indian IT sector CEOs aren’t the only ones weighing every word uttered by US President Donald Trump for nuances and burning the midnight oil wondering how to maintain their lead in their largest market.

Many companies establish a professional board of directors comprising “stars”, but sometimes even star teams with sophisticated individuals may take bad decisions, writes a corporate governance expert.

From among many factors that could be responsible for such decisions, two stand out: availability of information and a board agenda.

Good decisions can follow if appropriate and adequate information is shared. To make a high quality “informed” decision, the board should get as much information about an issue as possible. What happens in reality?

Our yoga expert offers some simple tips to make yoga a part of your daily working lives in this ‘India Global Business’ exclusive.

Exercise at the work place is an interesting subject because obviously one should be working when at the desk as opposed to doing lunges, hanging off the desk performing tricep exercises, stretching, bending and conducting all manner of cubical calisthenics. It’s just not very normal, is it?

Some of India’s leading pharmaceutical majors made their mark with acquisitions in recent months.

Aurobindo Pharma buys Portugal firm

Aurobindo PharmaceuticalsAurobindo Pharma has announced the acquisition of Portugal’s Generis Farmaceutica SA.

The Hyderabad-based company said a definitive agreement was signed by its step-down subsidiary, Agile Pharma, Netherlands. The acquisition will be from Magnum Capital Partners for an all-cash deal, the company said.

It will include a manufacturing facility in Amadora, Portugal, which has the capacity to produce 1.2 billion tablets or capsules annually. After the acquisition, the Aurobindo Group will be the largest in the generic pharmaceutical market in Portugal, with a portfolio of 271 generic products.

Generis has a wide portfolio of products, with a major share in therapeutic areas such as cardiovascular, central nervous system, anti-infective, and the genitourinary system.

Aurobindo expects to complete the deal by next month, after the Portuguese Competition authorities clear the deal.

Parag Saxena is the CEO of New Silk Route Partners, one of India’s largest Private Equity (PE) funds with a primary focus on India and the Southeast Asia markets. He tells ‘India Global Business’ about the company’s journey since inception in 2006 to becoming a leading Asia-focused growth capital firm with $1.4 billion under management.

How is New Silk Route contributing to the Indian growth story?

New Silk Route was formed with the belief that as India’s GDP per capita grows, the scope to fulfil the basic needs of the country’s large part population will also grow. Our investments have therefore been structured around themes that meet these various needs.

We have a million people graduating every month. If we don’t find good jobs for them, we will turn what the world regards as our demographic dividend into a demographic disaster. Education and skill development is a crucial theme for us.

In our fund right now, we have one of the largest companies in the tutoring business. They tutor children for medical school and engineering entrance examinations. The period that we have been an investor in the company in the last five years or so, they have significantly increased the number of students that they are providing services to – now nearly half a million. And, the company itself is succeeding and is one of the major successes of our portfolio.

Skill development is a very frequently used word but not enough is being done about it.

Tech Mahindra, an Indian software major specialising in digital transformation, consulting and business re-engineering, opened its new Centre of Excellence (CoE) in Dublin in January 2017.

The centre, to be operational in the first quarter of calendar year 2017, will be central to Tech Mahindra’s operations in the country and would focus on emerging technologies such as Robotics and Automation, Business Analytics, Cloud Infrastructure and Digital Services. The new centre would employ around 150 engineers over the next three years.

The US remained among the key destinations for Indian companies on a global expansion spree.

JSW Steel to restart US coal mining

JSW SteelsJSW Steel plans to restart coking coal mining in the US, according to Indian media reports.

JSW Steel owns nine coking coal mines with cumulative resources of 123 million tonnes at West Virginia in the US. These mines, which were acquired from a string of US-based companies in 2010, could not be developed due to a fall in coal prices following global financial crisis and the subsequent economic slowdown. Spot coking coal prices have more than trebled from $90 a tonne to $310 a tonne since July, on the back of strong demand from China and predictions of worst-ever cyclone in Australia.

Seshagiri Rao, Joint Managing Director, JSW Steel, said: “We will restart coking coal mines in the US by March next year and then take up iron ore mining in Chile. We will not bring the coal to India but it will act as a financial hedge as we are largely dependent on imported coal to operate our plants in India.” International coking coal prices have gone up sharply because of Chinese imports.

From someone who vigorously campaigned for the UK to remain in the European Union, Alok Sharma now finds himself on a rather different kind of pitch as the Foreign Office Minister charged with Asia. His post-Brexit appointment led to a flurry of visits to Asia to deliver Prime Minister Theresa May’s “Brexit means Brexit” message.

London attracts many of India’s new adventurers looking to expand globally. A trade and investment expert from the mayor’s team tells ‘India Global Business’ why that will continue to be the case in the New Year.

It is crucial London further strengthens ties with the great cities across India, because when it comes to business, we already share a special bond.

To say that the year 2016 shook up the very foundations of the European Union (EU) would not be an exaggeration. The reverberations from the Brexit vote in Britain aside, the economic bloc is undergoing its biggest existential crises that will continue to unravel in the New Year.

The underlying mood may be tetchy, but overall India-China relations covered some important ground in 2016.

In 2016, particularly following the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG) plenary in Seoul in June, India-China relations became decidedly testy. Several reasons were attributed to this and it is possible all of them had a bearing on the outcome. Critics of the Indian government’s attempt to gain acceptance as a full member of the NSG blamed that motivation. They argued the bid was premature and grossly underestimated the Chinese ability to veto India’s entry, or Beijing’s ability to stand up to a request from Washington DC.

India has got its electricity under control but still does not have an answer to its unrelenting thirst for imported crude. India has invested heavily in building up power plants to the extent there is a glut-like situation today. This year, India’s installed power capacity crossed 300 GW while peak power consumption is estimated in the range of just 140 GW.

Indian companies are collectively the third largest foreign investor in the UK and the largest employer in its manufacturing sector. Then, Indian IT companies employ about 100,000 US citizens in that country. No wonder countries across the world are inviting Indian companies to invest in them and are laying out the red carpet for them.

Indians have seen senior government functionaries from the Prime Minister downwards hard selling India as a an ideal destination for FDI from the West, China, Japan, South Korea and the ASEAN. But even as the PM and his council of ministers woo foreign investments, the developed countries of the West as well as many others are actively courting the movers and shakers of India Inc to invest in their countries.

Trade deals are about more than just tariffs, they are about relationships and the movement of people, writes Lord Bilimoria.

I came to the UK as a student in the early 1980s, where I knew I would receive a world-class education. The UK has, along with the US, the best universities in the world and those who study in the UK form lifelong connections with British people and the nation itself.

The year 2016 will undoubtedly go down in history as having changed the political landscape of the world, not least as a result of Britain’s vote in June’s referendum to leave the European Union (EU). As the immediate aftermath of the seismic shockwaves on the financial markets subside, we look back at what made Brexit the most-used word of the year.

India will do well to take the initiative in correcting the anomalous situation of Indo-US B2B relations and take some immediate steps to project itself as a willing and receptive partner for a Trump presidency, writes a foreign policy expert.

Donald Trump, the first billionaire, to have been elected POTUS, defied all pollsters’ forecasts and cleavages in the Republican party by striking a chord with US voters anxious about their future in a rapidly changing world.

India will adopt a wait and watch policy on the new US President-elect until there is greater clarity on issues of importance.

The world is still trying to come with a Donald Trump presidency in the US. Pick up any newspaper or switch on any current affairs channel anywhere in the world and the hot topic is what the chief executive-elect of the world’s most powerful country means for (depending on which city you are in) the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the Paris Climate Pact, ties with Russia, the war in Syria, the Pivot to the East, immigration and outsourcing.

India’s bilateral trade with Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam has grown exponentially from $460 million in 2000 to almost $12 billion in 2014.

Till recently, they were considered the poor cousins of ASEAN’s more prosperous members, but the four countries – Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam – known by the acronym CLMV have emerged as the new cynosure of investors’ eyes –both for their economic potential as well as for their strategic value.

The automobile industry continued to make a mark in global sweepstakes during 2016 and looks set to drive through further barriers in the New Year.

While unveiling the new version of its compact sports utility vehicle EcoSport at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show earlier this month, Michigan-based Ford announced it would be exported to its home country – US – in 2018 from its factory in Chennai.

Bright sunny days over, Indian IT industry braces for big churn

With revenues of $ 160 billion employing a workforce of nearly 4 million, the Indian information and technology (IT) sector is without exception the first industry that showcased India’s prowess at low cost problem solving to the wide world. Kick-started largely thanks to the Y2K scare that gripped the world in late 1990’s, India firmly established itself at the forefront of outsourcing game.

India-Russia ties have been rooted in history but 2016 marked a shift in gears to give the relationship a solid 21st century dimension.

President Vladimir Putin’s visit to India in October marked a boost for the Make in India programme with the signing of a slew of deals for the co-production of military helicopters. India also signed up to the purchase of Russian missiles and frigates.

India’s proactive Act East policy hinges heavily on the ASEAN free trade group and it is the many emerging economies in this collective that offer growth opportunities for Indian companies.

The Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) comprises of the Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Brunei, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam. India’s focus on a strengthened and multi-faceted relationship with ASEAN was reinvigorated at the 12th ASEAN India Summit in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, in November 2014, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi formally flagged up the Act East Policy.

Of all the foreign policy challenges facing the Modi government, the one on how to deal with China is, arguably, the most difficult and vexed problem.

China’s rise to the top league of the world’s leading nations has been accompanied by increasing muscle flexing towards it neighbours, with many of which it has unresolved border problems.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, with whom Modi shares close ties, is close to becoming India’s “all weather friend”.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has spoken of the “Arc of Democracy”, with Tokyo and New Delhi as its two ends and encompassing the ASEAN, Australia and South Korea in between as the ideal architecture for the 21st century, which many have already dubbed Asia’s century.

The cancellation of the 2016 SAARC summit in Islamabad, Pakistan, marks a major turning point in the geopolitical configurations in South Asia.

Bimstec wasn’t a term many people outside of government circles in Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Nepal and Bhutan were familiar till recently. Then, India, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Bhutan and Sri Lanka decided to pull out of the SAARC Summit in Islamabad citing Pakistan’s continuing support for and export of terrorist groups as part of its state policy.

The chief executive of Brussels-based trade group Eurochambres analyses whether the traditional trade agreement format is viable any more when it comes to India’s relationship with the European Union (EU).

India has become the world’s fastest-growing large economy. It is the world’s seventh-largest economy in terms of gross domestic product (GDP), overtaking the G7 members Canada and Italy as well as Brazil. In 2015 India’s economy expanded despite agriculture facing a second consecutive drought year, with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) estimating in July 2016 that the Indian economy was on track to meet its projected growth target of 7.4 per cent in 2016-17, supported by brisk consumer spending and an uptick in the rural economy.

India has lots of ground to cover in the African continent with its own version of economic diplomacy and the New Year will mark another chapter in the India-Africa outreach programme.

The Modi government has made much headway in its outreach to Africa but India still has lots of ground to cover before it can match Beijing’s heft in that continent.

Governance systems developed ground-up in India can be replicated in other places in the world.

Over the last two centuries, India has adopted, or been forced to adopt, standards and systems imported from the West and imposed, except in some cases, from above. So, India’s judicial system is a copy of the British legal system, its education system is a product of Lord Macaulay’s disdain for all things Indian, its link language is also a gift from the former colonial masters and the Westminster model of democracy that India follows is a close replica of the British parliamentary system.

India’s auto industry has arrived on the global stage but has to learn to adapt to go further.

With annual sales of over 20 million units, the Indian automobile industry is one of the largest in the world. It is the fourth largest market for cars behind China, US and Japan and trails only China in the global pecking order for two wheelers. It has also been one of the fastest growing automobile markets in the world at a time when there are fewer takers for cars around the world. Many believe India will emerge as the third largest market for cars as early as the turn of this decade.

As India looks set to increase its GDP fivefold, to about $10 trillion, by 2040, it is axiomatic that the country’s energy demand will rise in tandem.

India recently took a small first step towards ensuring its energy security by commissioning three underground storage units of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve Project with a combined capacity of 5.33 million metric tonnes of crude.

The Tata Group is India’s most successful global firm but its geographical spread may not always be a good thing.

The Tata Group is a much respected, admired and valued conglomerate in India and one that is also highly successful. Very often the two do not go hand in hand. It is also perceived as a very ethical corporate group, having played a significant role in nation building since its inception in 1868 – creating country’s first steel plant, power station, luxury hotel, domestic airline and information and technology company.

Mehul Kapadia is the vice-president of Tata Communications and managing director in charge of the Formula One Business of the firm. F1, one of the most technologically advanced sports in the world, holds races across five continents and 21 countries. Here the Tata Comms chief explains why they chose the Indian tech giant and how the year 2016 has been a good one.

Russia remains India’s largest supplier of defence and strategic equipment. It is important the relationship strengthens in other areas too to avoid a slow burnout.

The Russian Ambassador to New Delhi said all the right things. Russia, he insisted, remained India’s BFF (best friend forever for the uninitiated) despite its recent flirtation with Pakistan. But it will take a lot more than mere protestations of undying love to convince New Delhi that its ties with Moscow are still what they were at the peak of the Indo-Soviet romance during the Cold War.

India and Japan signed off a strategic civil nuclear agreement in November. Will it clear the way for a wider and deeper role for Japanese business in India?

Narendra Modi is famously fixated with productive use of time. The man hours he has spent on Japan during a career dating back more than a decade to his days as chief minister in Gujarat, are eye-popping. He has always been drawn to Japan’s world-beating manufacturing, engineering processes and a perception of capital as a long-term partner as the preferred route to India’s own development.

From a passive acceptance of SAARC’s irreplaceable role as a platform for economic integration and developmental cooperation in the region, the Narendra Modi led government has changed India’s approach.

In the autumn of 2016, the cancellation of the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) summit scheduled to be held in Islamabad was a defining moment in the life of this 30-year institution. The first SAARC summit was hosted by Dhaka in December 1985. Following that, heads of government of member countries were expected to meet every year.

A leading Indian diplomat based in Africa shares his views on why the continent is important to India.

Any observer of Indian foreign and strategic policy may well raise the question: Why Africa? Why should a developing country like India expend its limited political, diplomatic, human and financial resources on Africa when there are myriad problems to be resolved within the country. Moreover, given India’s limited resources spent primarily cultivating the P-5 and other great powers like Germany and Japan, our immediate neighbourhood (SAARC, ASEAN, CIS) and on crucial multilateral systems like the UN, why should the country’s initiatives be spread thinly across the 54 countries that make up continental Africa.

Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam (CLMV) collectively hold a lot of promise for Indian companies, both as a market and source of raw materials.

Most Indians are quite familiar with Vietnam. Apart from etching itself into the India’s (and the world’s) collective consciousness for its heroic and successful fight against a superpower in the 1960s and 1970s, it has also emerged recently as a close Indian ally in South East Asia against a new Chinese assertiveness.

The UK may be vehement that it remains outward looking and open to global talent but developments over 2016 reflect the opposite. The overall anti-immigrant rhetoric in the build up to Brexit, a crackdown on work visas and the continuing drop in Indian students choosing UK universities have contributed to the image of a country closing its doors.

The year that began with lots of hope is drawing to a close on a note of concern and some cautious optimism. In between, there was shock, some not so pleasant surprises and renewed promise of a better future. It’s always a huge risk to pre-judge history but I think I’ll still go out on a limb and declare that when the definitive history of globalisation is written, 2016 will stand out as the year in which the idea of the flat world, the global village and the credo of freer and fairer markets and open borders (for trade in goods at least) suffered several body blows.

India-EU ties can attain great heights but Brussels needs to be a little more sensitive towards New Delhi’s needs

Even as Britain’s “leave” vote in the Brexit referendum continues to grab a disproportionate amount of media attention, the Narendra Modi government and bureaucrats in Brussels are working quietly to realise the full potential of India’s relationship with the European Union (EU), which, many analysts believe, is as, if not more important, than New Delhi’s ties with London.

It is of utmost importance that the views of the business and policy communities from both sides are represented in a constructive negotiation process.

The EU-India Trade and Investment Agreement is still under negotiation. After the EU-India Summit in March 2016, some steps have been taken from both sides to improve the collaboration but still a lot needs to be done to reach a successful conclusion of the deal.

Though cut from the same cloth, the eldest in the next generation of the Munjal family has taken a divergent route from his predecessors. A staunch advocate of reversing the ill effects of climate change, Rahul Munjal is quickly gaining prominence in the green economy and already has India's largest rooftop solar installation and first certified commercial green bond to his name. Inspired by his father who founded what was to become world's largest two wheeler maker--Hero MotoCorp, the junior Munjal is hoping his venture would be as successful in its own way.

Manpreet Vohra took charge as the Indian Ambassador in Afghanistan last year and has already presided over some high-profile bilateral developments. The former Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has solid credentials behind him to handle the rigours of his latest diplomatic posting, also having served in the Indian High Commission in Pakistan. He took time out for ‘India Global Business’ to address some pressing questions as well as take stock of ties with Afghanistan, where India has invested over $2 billion in aid and reconstruction.

‘India Global Business’ reviews India’s growing investment interests in the UK as the second-largest job creator for the country. Official UK government statistics for 2015-2016 reveal India’s firm hold among the top three source markets for foreign direct investment (FDI) into the UK.

With the shadow of Brexit hanging over India-UK ties, the latest figures for Indian investment into Britain paint a fairly promising foundation for the UK to build on. As the country negotiates its terms of exit from the European Union (EU) and seeks to strike out stronger partnerships with other economies, there are clear reasons...

India’s state-owned energy major, NTPC, recently celebrated its Green Masala Bond listing at London Stock Exchange (LSE), raising $300 million double the initial target set. ‘India Global Business’ caught up with Kulamani Biswal, finance director of the company, in London to explore what lies behind this first-ever Indian quasi-sovereign’s masala bond issuance, the proceeds from which will be invested in the renewable energy market in India.

India has laid down a very aggressive road map for solar power in the country, with an overall target being 100GW by 2022 – nearly five times from current levels. Co-founder of Rays Power, a pioneer in the field of solar power generation in the country, gives his view on achieving this goal. There is a very huge requirement for equity capital investment in the Indian solar sector and a lot of that capital will come from foreign markets. London, as one of the financial centres of the world, has shown a growing interest in solar in India as a promising story.

The World Bank’s representative working at the heart of the definitive ‘Doing Business’ rankings revisits the Indian government’s pledge to improve the country’s rating on global charts. The overall assessment is good but there is a long road ahead to achieve a truly business-friendly environment. The private sector is often described as the ‘engine of economic growth’, given its critical role in creating jobs, which enable citizens and countries to prosper. However, several factors, such as lack of access to finance or burdensome processes for starting a new business, can undermine private enterprise and, if left unaddressed, can impede growth.

The Adani Group has interests across agriculture, logistics and energy around the world. The Ahmedabad-headquartered conglomerate filters through its corporate social responsibility (CSR) with an environmentally friendly approach through the Adani Foundation. As I pen down this piece, it evokes me to tread a little back to the 1990s when the writings of Mahatma Gandhi on cleanliness, health and hygiene, were reproduced and hugely circulated post the unfortunate outbreak of plague in Surat, Gujarat. Only for the reason that we were all sensitised and motivated so much on maintaining sanitation and hygiene, Surat was transformed to become one of the cleanest cities of the nation. And, it continues to be so till date.

Amazon’s India chief presents case studies to show how the global e-commerce giant is using technology to evolve and transform lives in this exclusive article for ‘India Investment Journal’. As a rule, Nadeem would come across as a predictable face in a ‘National Geographic’ documentary on Mumbai’s humming Dharavi. His job in a small leather workshop earned him just enough to meet household expenses.

At a time when the passage of India’s tranformational Goods and Services Tax (GST) is promising to turn all of the country into a common market of $2.2 trillion from April next year, the turmoil in Europe over Brexit offers India scope for closer economic, political and strategic ties with the European Union (EU), the world's largest common market with a combined GDP of $18 trillion.

Frugal innovation and new business models for inclusive growth hold the key for a new India-Europe collaboration, argues an expert on Indo-Europe ties.We do not suspect how the global economy has taken a new turn after the great crisis of 2009. Not to redefine the relations between India and Europe in the new global economy in the making is to condemn both partners to misunderstandings and gradually a turn-back.

So Donald Trump “is a big fan of India and a big fan of Hindu (sic)”; is he? At a gathering of about 5,000 American Indians at New Jersey’s Raritan Center, addressing what was probably the first country-specific ethno-religious rally by a US presidential hopeful, the Republican candidate promised a “phenomenal future” for Indo-US ties and said that under a “Trump administration”, the two countries “are going to be best friends”.

This is the first time that Trump has spoken about his vision for the country's relationship with India and has tried to tick all the right boxes. But American Indians remain wary of him, given his earlier protectionist rants, which, if taken...

Nisha Desai Biswal as the Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, US Department of State, is at the heart of foreign policy affairs in Washington DC. Despite a hectic schedule in the lead up to the elections, she took time out for ‘India Global Business’ to track the legacy President Obama is likely to leave behind and what lies in store for India-US ties under a new leader.

The general mood within the US has changed over the last few years, as reflected in the aggressive ‘US first’ stance of both candidates, argues a senior foreign policy expert. In this ‘India Global Business’ exclusive, he weighs up the steps India can take in the post-Obama landscape.

Irrespective of who moves into the White House on November 8, the four key determinants, from the Indian perspective, of establishing robust and mutually beneficial Indo-US relations will remain unchanged.

In August 2016, the UK government issued further consultation on the rules affecting the taxation of non-UK domiciled individuals and inheritance tax on UK residential property. In the lead up to the final legislation which will follow the consultation, a tax expert delves into the impact on Global Indians.

Draft legislation includes details of wide-ranging changes to the tax landscape for so-called “non-doms” and UK residential property, due to take effect from 6 April 2017.

Yoga is today considered a $80-billion market globally but is India, its country of origin, doing enough to invest in truly nurturing the impact of this mega export. Our yoga expert writes about how proverbial bridges between the academic, scientific and spiritual thought leaders could be answer.

My medical history notes read “45 yrs female SSC c LBP”. The lower case ‘c’ is medical shorthand for ‘with’ and LBP means lower back pain. The acronym SSC regularly appears in my consultation notes these days and stands for ‘suffered and survived cancer’.

Flanders is one of three official regions of Belgium in the European Union (EU). ‘India Global Business’ throws the spotlight on this economic powerhouse to see what it can offer Indian companies looking to set up in Europe.

Flanders is all about synergy – synergy between knowledge centers, corporations, universities, markets and culture. The region’s perfect combination of talent, innovation, infrastructure and purchasing power make it a bustling metropolis that gives wings to Indian businesses. Are you ready to take off? The sky is the limit in Flanders.

A Mumbai-headquartered manufacturer shares its reasons behind choosing Flanders as a European base.

The JBF Group specialises in polyester and related products with end-use applications in textiles and packaging. The group’s activities in India are focused on polyester yarns & resin businesses and it recently announced its first foray into the petrochemical business with the setting up of a greenfield Pure Terephthalic Acid manufacturing plant in Mangalore.

Indian IT companies help US companies retain their global competitive edge. This is just one reason why it must roll back visa curbs on Indian IT professionals, argues ‘India Global Business’.

The trickle of bad news buffeting the Indian IT sector is slowly gaining critical mass. Infosys, Wipro and Cognizant, three leading software exporters, have cut their annual revenue guidance to 8.4 per cent from 12 per cent, citing macro-economic factors such as falling ticket sizes of deals, Brexit and a frustrating inability to scale up the skill sets of their workforce.

Jitesh Gadhia is one of Britain’s newest peers and made worldwide headlines recently when he marked his entry to the House of Lords by swearing his oath of allegiance to Queen Elizabeth II on a copy of the ‘Rig Veda’ – the ancient collection of Vedic Sanskrit hymns dating back to around 1,200 BC. ‘India Global Business’ caught up with the 49-year-old investment banker of Gujarati-origin to delve into his new role, India-UK ties and the post-Brexit scenario.

It has been described as the most divisive elections in history and the Indian-origin politicians on either side of the Hillary Clinton vs Donald Trump divide are no exception. Reflecting much of the US Elections 2016 trends, a number of the Trump supporters seem to be rather muted while Clinton has a more gung-ho team. ‘India Global Business’ hand-picks some of the prominent players.

R. Chandrasekhar is the president of the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), the premier trade body for the Indian IT-BPO sector. In this exclusive interview with ‘India Global Business’, the former Secretary in the Indian government’s Department of Telecommunications delves into the trends in the industry, the future of robotics and how the Indian information technology sector can remain ahead of the curve.

The Indian IT sector must reskill its workforce and move up the value chain if it wants to retain its dominant position in the world as well as its double digit growth rates.

On July 15, 2016 a sombre looking Vishal Sikka, the CEO and MD of Infosys Ltd, India’s second largest exporter of IT services announced the company’s first quarterly results. While revenue and profit were below market expectations, what surprised many was the downward revision of annual revenue growth forecast. Markets were swift to mete out punishment. The shares of the company crashed by about 10 per cent in a single trading session, wiping out nearly $3.5 billion in market capitalisation.

Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, a sub-bloc within ASEAN, are all former socialist economies transitioning to the market. India can help this process and increase its economic and strategic footprint across South East Asia.

The acronym CLMV would have elicited blank or quizzical looks at most gatherings even a few years ago. It is still not the stuff of regular cocktail circuit chatter, but many more people now know that it stands for Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.
Many will also know that these countries, all part of the ASEAN, also make up a sub-group that is of particular economic and strategic interest to India.

Mumbai-headquartered Marico Limited is a consumer goods company providing products and services in the area of health and beauty. Vivek Karve, the chief financial officer (CFO) of the firm, speaks exclusively to ‘India Global Business’ about the firm’s global expansion strategy, why Africa has been a focal point for some of its well-known brands and what other Indian firms with global ambitions can learn from its success story.

Organised by the Delhi-based think-tank India Foundation in Singapore, the Indian Ocean Conference of September 2016 sought to locate India in the midst of the ocean that bears its name. ‘India Global Business’ presents a report from the scene.

India’s relationship with the Indian Ocean is political, cultural and economic, historical and contemporary. Its essence can be captured by the following statistics: of all of India’s international trade, 90 per cent by volume and 70 per cent by value moves across the ocean.

Shailesh Vara MP was elected to the British Parliament in 2005 and has held a number of senior positions, including former justice minister and former work and pensions minister. Prime Minister Theresa May recently appointed him co-chairman of Conservative Friends of India (CFI) alongside Ranjit Singh Baxi. ‘India Global Business’ caught up with him to discuss his priorities in a new post-Brexit scenario.

Indian universities have had the dubious distinction of lagging far behind on global rankings for decades. However, this year marked a significant shift, with a record 31 making the grade in the definitive ‘Times Higher Education World University Rankings’ for 2016. ‘India Global Business’ looks into what is behind India being branded the “star” of South Asia this year.

The Indian Parliament had recently passed the Institutes of Technology (Amendment) Bill 2016, which is hoped to mark...

Beats Mylan, Novartis, Torrent, Aurobindo to the post. Promoter says hungry for more

Almost inarguably, October 5th 2016, a Wednesday was the biggest day in the life of 53 year old Binish Hasmukh Chudgar, the highly low profile vice chairman of Ahmedabad based Intas Pharmaceuticals. That day in central London, Intas snapped up Israeli generic drug maker Teva’s assets in UK and Ireland—Actavis UK Ltd and Actavis Ireland Ltd—in a record $ 764 million deal (Rs 5083 crore) out muscling bigger global rivals like Mylan and Novartis or domestic competition like Aurobindo pharma and Torrent Pharmaceuticals in a bidding process that lasted over 6 months.

With just weeks to go, the search for the 45th President of the United States is getting increasingly tighter and fractious. ‘India Global Business’ evaluates the strengths and weaknesses of the two main candidates – Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton – to see what India has in store under a new US President.

Traditionally, the 50 states vote either for the Republican or Democrat candidate largely on a set pattern based on the two parties’ take on a host of issues that confront the world’s most powerful country. This time around, the challenge posed by multi-billionaire businessman Donald Trump – the outsider – who first confounded everyone when he became the Republican candidate and has continued to befuddle his critics and...

In a world where Americans seem split on the advantages of globalisation and liberal trade, we look beyond the wish-list politics of the past to see what a new American regime could mean for India.

What would India want from the next president of the United States? In years and elections gone by, that question would have been answered with a wish list of bilateral agreements and country-specific demands. In 2016, in these troubled and confused times for the global polity and economy, the answer is wider: the new president should renew...

It is one of the many perplexities of modern day politics that a politician who has such extreme views on India and Indians can find favour among the Indian diaspora in the US.

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has strong and, often offensive, views on just about anything. From wanting to build a wall to block out Mexicans to denying entry to Muslims into the US, he has gone on record with some of the most outrageous statements from any modern day politician.

As US President Barack Obama gets set to hand over power to either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump in the November 8 elections, ‘India Global Business’ takes a trip to his home city of Chicago. The so-called “Windy City” is not only home to some of the world’s tallest buildings and sky-scrapers but also among the largest Indian American population of around 172,000.

Manjeev Singh Puri as the Ambassador of India to the European Union (EU), Belgium and Luxembourg has a unique vantage point on the unfolding global order following the UK’s referendum result in favour of an exit from the EU. The seasoned diplomat, who took charge in Brussels in January 2014, takes time out for ‘India Global Business’ to give a broad view of what the post-Brexit scenario could look like for India.

The frayed nerves have calmed; the markets have stabilised; and investor attention has turned from the fallout of Brexit to the flight path of the Monsoon clouds over India and the fairly good probability of the long awaited GST Bill finally going through the Rajya Sabha and becoming law.

More than a month after the unexpected vote in favour of Brexit, economists, analysts and policy planners are unanimous that that Britain’s shock decision to exit from the European Union (EU) is unlikely to cause any major long-term damage to the Indian economy as it is still very dependent on domestic consumption, which is mostly insulated from global even.

Priti Patel has taken over as Secretary of State for International Development in the Theresa May led post-Brexit British government. A significant promotion within the UK political establishment for this Gujarati-origin Conservative party MP is expected to bring some good news for India.

The fact that Priti Patel became a key voice of the pro-Brexit camp in the lead up to the June 23 referendum in Britain may have seemed like a political risk at one level but it was a very natural choice at a personal level.

Ashok Amritraj is famous as one of the Indians who made a mark on international professional tennis back in the 1970s, alongside brother Vijay. The 60-year-old is today best known as a Hollywood producer with over 100 films grossing over $2 billion on the box-office worldwide. The Chennai-born filmmaker is based in Los Angeles but truly embodies the Global Indian tag, making regular trips to India as well as the UK.

‘India Global Business’ caught up with the chairman and CEO of Hyde Park Entertainment during a recent visit to London to delve into the business of cinema, breaking the race divide in Hollywood to pave the way for future generations and China beating India in the box-office race.

Global trade slowdown is far worse than projected and the trend is leading to greater protectionism, writes FICCI president.

If you are concerned with slowdown in world trade, think again. It is indeed far worse than what we commonly believe. As the July-report of ‘Global Trade Alert’ pointed out, world trade is not just slowing down – the fact is it has not grown at all since January 2015. Such a prolonged phase of ‘no growth’ in global trade is worrisome and expectedly, it is accompanied by a spurt in protectionism.

A free trade agreement between India and the European Union (EU) has already been nine years in the making and the pro-Brexit vote in the UK to exit the economic bloc is unlikely to come as a fillip.

Negotiations for a free trade agreement (FTA) between India and the European Union (EU) have been in the works since 2007. Neither side has been willing to give up on key concerns. For India, these include easier access for its ...

To say that the UK’s vote to leave the EU has ushered in a period of “uncertainty” would be something of an under-statement.

Even though the UK voted decisively to leave the EU, there is no consensus on what Brexit means in practice. On the one hand, a few politicians, along with much of the press, are celebrating the UK’s new freedom to pursue trade deals with fast-growing emerging economies such as China and India, for now this freedom is...

The India-UK economic relationship is an important one, and would continue to go from strength to strength as the UK exits from the EU, according to the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

CII reaffirms its commitment to building trade and investment ties and positively enhancing business linkages with the UK. There is an increasing level of Indian investment into the UK, and many of these Indian businesses are doing extremely well. A recent Grant Thornton/CII ‘India Meets Britain’ report noted that the number of Indian companies growing at over 10 per cent per year in the UK has jumped to 62 from 36 in the previous year. Telecom and technology companies have achieved phenomenal growth, for example HCL Technologies recorded a growth of 728 per cent.

The CEO of London’s economic development agency, London & Partners, flags up the British capital’s many positives in an attempt to convince Indian companies not to be put off by the recent referendum in favour of Britain’s exit from the European Union.

Last year, London’s economic development company, London & Partners, ran a programme to discover those Indian start-up businesses which are most likely to go global. We flew the most exciting companies in adtech, cyber security, artificial intelligence, ecommerce, analytics and other sectors to London to participate in an acceleration bootcamp programme.

Our aim was to strengthen the economic ties between UK and Indian entrepreneurs and investors, and to show them that London was a great place from which to go global.

The Indian Prime Minister sought to set the tone right and put India-Africa relations on a fast track with his recent African safari.

Narendra Modi’s five day four nation visit to Africa in July was his 51st visit to a foreign country since taking over and 11th this year. While his trips to US, Europe or China generate more newsprint and airwaves, his African safari is anything but less significant. The continent has for long being seen as a potential bright spot in the world economy that will manifest itself after emerging markets like Russia, India, Brazil and China have exhausted themselves. When that happens, the country that has the most solid and traditional foundation and footprint...

The seaside town of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil will play host to the Olympics in August 2016. As all eyes are currently on this city famed for its carnivals, ‘India Global Business’ prepares a handy guide for those planning to make the most of the business opportunities the city has to offer against the backdrop of this great sporting event.

The Indian automobile industry is making its presence felt globally with rising exports, multiple acquisitions and heightened exposure to overseas markets.

In February this year something very uncommon, if not unprecedented, happened in the Indian automotive industry. The country’s largest car maker, Maruti Suzuki India Ltd, exported a batch of 1,800 units of its latest premium compact car Baleno to its home market Japan. Export of cars from India have gained significant volumes and are growing fast but even then this tranche was of special relevance. It was the first time ever that Maruti, where Suzuki owns a majority 54 per cent, was exporting a model from its factories in India to parent Suzuki’s home country. Over the last decade...

An Indian economist gives his views on the unfolding scenario for India and the world after Britain voted to leave the European Union economic bloc in a referendum on June 23.

Last year, India invested more in the UK than in Germany, France and Italy combined. In terms of number of projects, India was the third largest source of foreign direct investment (FDI) to the UK, with around 122 projects generating more than 7,700 jobs in the country (Source: Deloitte). The UK is also one of the largest investors into India, contributing around ...

Indian companies, far from being job destroyers in the US, are actually net employment generators, writes India Inc. Consulting Editor.

Republican Party presidential nominee Donald Trump’s flip flops over H1B visas, which allow Indian IT pros to work in the US, show that large sections of the US are increasingly viewing protectionism as a panacea for its domestic economic problems, including joblessness, even as saner voices point to the positive contributions made by skilled migrants like Indian geeks.

On June 23, Britain voted in a referendum which unleashed a seismic shift in world politics. As the UK begins the process of defining the contours of its exit from the European Union (EU), we rewind to how the debate had divided Global Indian members of Parliament in the country.

As India takes its place as the fastest growing economy within the global economic order, it is about time the government looked at appointing a dedicated “Indian Trade Representative”, argues India Inc. CEO.

Does India need a dedicated office of a Trade Representative (TR) akin to the United States Trade Representative (USTR)? India has ongoing bilateral and multilateral trade negotiations with the European Union, Thailand, Asean and the Gulf Cooperation Council, among more than a dozen countries and blocs. Then, it has, at last count, at least 45 trade disputes with...

India has resisted pressure on opening up certain areas while the US and Europe are not equally forthcoming, with reciprocity being its mantra on global dealings.

Consider this: An Indian company operating in the US will have to pay additional visa fees of $4,000-4,500 for some H1B and L1 visa applications, according to the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2016 that was signed into law by President Barrack Obama in December last year.

A senior academic with expertise in international trade agreements explains why India and the US still have much ground to cover in terms of trade ties.

Notwithstanding their geo-strategic bonhomie, India and the US remain far apart on international trade. The distance arises from their inabilities to reconcile to a bilateral trade relationship simultaneously accommodating both of their major sources of distinct global comparative advantages. These advantages for the US are in export of intellectual property (IP) – intensive goods and services such as pharmaceuticals and entertainment and education products – whereas for India, they are in...

‘India Global Business’ calls out for government hand-holding to make the most of opportunities arising out of this seismic shift in the global order.

A lot has been written on how Brexit will affect the Indian economy. But a disproportionate amount of attention has been paid on the impact on India’s domestic economy and its export prospects. Not enough has been spoken about how it could affect India Inc’s appetite for acquiring British and EU assets – both production facilities and brands – that could help domestic Indian companies ramp up their global presence.

I’m reminded of a famous line from William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, which says: “There is a tide in the affairs of men, which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries.”

We are now riding such a tide. Global economic flux and political uncertainty means world leaders need to figure out new relationships, new opportunities and reset the rules of engagement for a more connected and less secure than before world, where unprecedented migration and the movement of people for safety or for work is leading to anxiety.

These issues need to be...

Mahindra & Mahindra is one of India’s leading automotive giants and among the few global manufacturers of electric cars commercially. The $16.9-billion Mumbai-headquartered conglomerate’s Mahindra Racing was the only team to represent India in the Formula E world racing event for the second consecutive year in London in July 2016.

Dr Pawan Goenka, executive director & group president (automotive & farm sector), shares his insights on the racing season, what it means for Indian electric vehicle (EV) ambitions and Mahindra’s plans to become a leading EV player in the world.

The world as we know it changed significantly today as Britain voted for Brexit but also threw up a historic opportunity for India and the UK to chart their own course within this new emerging scenario in Europe.

India and the UK must work proactively to build on their strategic partnership and seek a new kind of union with the wider the European Union (EU) community. Just as the UK’s Remain camp had stressed, it is not a binary decision – India has the right credentials to strike lucrative agreements with the UK as well as the EU. The one thing that is a given is that doing nothing is not an option for Indian business and political interest.

India Inc. CEO lays out the sharp contrast between India's benign partnership and China’s projection of hard power in Africa and how it could become the template for Indian strategic-economic-political outreach programmes elsewhere.

Looking at India’s efforts at making inroads into Africa, I’m reminded of an old proverb, probably of Chinese origin, which says: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” Fortunately for India, that step has been widely welcomed in Africa, which views India as a benign partner that is helping countries in that continent meet and overcome challenges relating to healthcare, availability of cheap live-saving drugs, education and digital penetration, among several other initiatives that leverage, harness and project India’s soft power. Then, African nations are major partners in the International Solar Alliance, which...

India’s minister for power, coal, new and renewable energy, Piyush Goyal, has often been referred to as among the most energetic ministers in the Narendra Modi Cabinet. As someone who thrives on meeting India’s energy targets before time, he is now keen to move the debate towards how India can play a leadership role within the context of Modi’s International Solar Alliance (ISA).
‘India Global Business’ caught up with the minister during a recent visit to London, where he spoke about redefining the Africa story and affordable energy access for every citizen of India and the world.

Investments from India into the UK rose by nearly 65 per cent in 2015, establishing India as the third largest source of foreign direct investment (FDI) into the UK. The number of fast-growth Indian companies in the UK, growing at more than 10 per cent, has nearly doubled from 36 to 62 firms in a year. These are just some of the key findings of a new report by Grant Thornton.

The organisation charged with promoting trade and investment between Commonwealth countries has had a turbulent history but it may have finally found its saviour in businessman and entrepreneur Jonathan Peter Marland, also known as Lord Marland of Odstock. Here we trace the journey of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council (CWEIC) and the promise it holds under Lord Marland’s stewardship.

Sanjeev Gupta is being dubbed the UK’s new “man of steel” after he emerged as a potential saviour of jobs if he were to acquire Tata Steel’s UK assets, which went up for sale in March.

‘India Global Business’ caught up with the founder and executive chairman of Liberty House Group to delve into the crisis in the European steel industry, restarting mothballed steelworks and why he feels his GreenSteel model would prove more resilient.

The Indian ICT industry has been a flag-bearer for the country, especially in the UK and Europe. NIIT Technologies, as a leading player in the field, is well placed to give an overview of the successes and challenges. The firm’s Europe in-charge weighs up the market, how it has evolved over the years and if the upcoming referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union (EU) is likely to have any significant impact on the industry.

Naushad Merali is one of the most successful entrepreneurs in East Africa. The Kenyan-born Gujarati takes pride in his Indian roots and has a knack for striking deals that saw him make a success of a string of businesses, from telecom to tea. He chairs the Sameer Group, a Kenyan conglomerate active in agriculture, construction, information technology, property and finance.

Africa is the new battleground for India and China to carve out their influence. Besides a lucrative market and source of raw materials, the continent offers India strategic significance in the Indian Ocean. India Inc. Consulting Editor analyses if India is close to winning this game of catch-up.

With more than 100 Indian companies active in the region, Malawi offers a much wider market for India in the years to come. One of the country’s leading investment promoters makes his pitch for Indian business.

Malawi has had a cordial long-standing bilateral relationship with India which dates back to 1964, when Malawi gained its independence from the British. Malawi has a functioning Mission in Delhi, which it opened in February 2007.

The life-saving role played by Indian pharmaceutical firms in poorer countries of Africa is one of the real global success stories of our time.

The year: 2001. Africa was facing a major health crisis. Sub-Saharan Africa alone had 22.5 million HIV-positive people. The disease was assuming epidemic proportions. The price of patented drugs supplied by western drug companies was a prohibitive $10,000 per patient per year – way out of reach of the average patient.

Mukesh Aghi is president of the US-India Business Council (USIBC), an influential bilateral agency focused on developing the strategic partnership between India and the US. Dr Aghi is perfectly placed to assess how far this partnership has strengthened, what the Indian Prime Minister can hope to take back from his upcoming American tour this time and what the post-Obama landscape could look like for India-US ties.

As Prime Minister Modi plans his latest visit to the US, a Washington D.C. based Indian industry expert lays out the groundwork for the next chapter in the India-US relationship.

Since May 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Obama have met six times. Three times in the US, once in India and twice at other multilateral dialogues like COP 21 and the 2015 UN General Assembly.

Looking ahead to Narendra Modi’s historic speech to the joint session of the US Congress next week, the India Inc. team presents a draft speech of what many Indians would love the Indian Prime Minister to say about the current status of US-India relations.


Hon’ble Members of the US Congress and Sisters and Brothers of America
It fills my heart with joy unspeakable to rise in response to the warm and cordial welcome which you have given me and my delegation. This visit, my fourth as the Prime Minister of the world’s largest democracy, to the country that is the world’s oldest democracy, comes at a time when our two nations are enjoying the warmest phase in their 70-year-old relationship.
Over the last decade and a half, and especially over the last two years, our two countries have come closer on a range of issues from economic relations to mutually beneficial strategic and military ties to finding much common ground on global trade and climate change. All this has been facilitated by...

India’s banking chief Raghuram Rajan is recognised worldwide among a handful of those who had foreseen risks in the system before the 2008 financial crisis. As governor of Reserve Bank of India (RBI), he has become a leading voice for the developing world in international fora. During a recent visit to the UK, he articulated his traffic signal model to move the world towards a more responsible monetary policy.

Sudhir Ruparelia is among the wealthiest businessmen in Africa, with an estimated net worth of $800 million. The Ugandan-born entrepreneur and investor if the chairman and majority shareholder of the Ruparelia Group which has a wide investment span across banking, insurance, education, broadcasting, real estate, hotels and resorts. His story is unique in that his family was among those expelled by Ugandan dictator Idi Amin in the 1970s but decided to return to the country to set up his business empire.

Vikram Solar is among India’s leading solar energy solutions provider, specialising in high efficiency PV module manufacturing and comprehensive EPC solutions. With an international presence in more than 32 countries, the Kolkata-headquartered firm prides itself as the only Tier 1 Indian manufacturer – an industry ranking that symbolises quality.

Gyanesh Chaudhary, the managing director & CEO of Vikram Solar Private Limited, took time out for ‘India Global Business’ during a recent UK visit as part of an Indian government solar mission. Here he delves into the global lead companies like his are taking in the sector and why he believes India can be the largest installers of solar power in the world.

Indian companies have been fairly active in the African continents, which offers the country an extremely lucrative market. Given China’s head-start in the region, India’s state-owned enterprise interest in Africa is long-overdue. Here are just some recent snapshots of the India-Africa story.

The Indian Pharmaceutical Industry stands the third in terms of volume and 4th in value terms. The global medicine market got more and more attractive. The global markets though critical for Indian companies, proved to be a go to for Indian generic drugs makers and breakthrough inventions in 2015. ‘India Global Business’ presents some of the highlights of this year’s activity in the pharma sector.

India’s rising global profile, its increasing integration into the global economy and expanding geo-political interests are changing the profile of ANZ – from a distant outpost somewhere in the southern hemisphere with hard to beat cricketers and harder to understand accents, these countries have suddenly emerged as important economic, strategic and military partners in India’s Act East initiative.

Effective and efficient deployment of solar power could prove to be major catalyst for empowerment of those on the wrong side of socio-economic divide. Prime Minister Modi described “the sunrise of new hope, not just for clean energy but for villages and homes still in darkness, for mornings and evening filled with a clear view of the glory of the sun”.

Siddharth Jhunjhunwala, co-founder & CEO, & Kavita Jhunjhunwala, co-founder & Digital Lead, of Web Spiders set up their start-up in Kolkata in the early 2000s with just two computers and now have over 300 employees around the globe, with a co-located HQ in Singapore as well as bases in the US and UK. The Jhunjhunwalas relive their fascinating journey with 'India Global Business'.

The European Union and the Republic of India benefit from a longstanding relationship going back to the early 1960s. Since then trade ties between the two have evolved slowly and steadily. From being an acceptor of help and services from the European Union, India has now emerged as an investor in the European countries' development and growth. ‘India Global Business’ traces some milestones in this journey.

India’s most successful export has been what Prime Minister Modi calls “Lok Doots”. The wave of brain drain that started soon after India’s independence until very recently has created communities of what India Inc. calls “Global Indians” in all parts of the globe. 'India Global Business' tracks the Global Indian ambassadors.

India Inc. took stock of the recent visit by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the UK with a high-profile summit to assess the impact on India-UK relations. “This visit has truly been a vibrant illustration of the partnership and the commitment we have to India… the UK will remain the place for India to come to within Europe,” was the message from Priti Patel, Britain’s employment minister.

India and the UK announced deals worth £9.2 billion during Prime Minister Narendra Modi visit to the UK this week. A new rupee bond to fund Indian Railways, a civil nuclear pact and collaborations in the field of defence and cyber security were among the highlights of what British Prime Minister David Cameron described as a "new dynamic modern partnership".

The value of investment in UK-India research from the UK Research Councils, the Indian government and third parties received a £72-million boost during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UK. The research partnership now exceeds £200 million covering programmes across food, energy and water security; health and well-being; smart cities and rapid urbanisation – and increasing access to expertise, resources and facilities.

India and the UK have agreed on a comprehensive package of collaboration on energy and climate change which includes commercial deals worth £3.2 billion during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UK. The UK and India reaffirmed the importance of addressing climate change and promoting secure, affordable and sustainable supplies of energy that will support economic growth, energy security and energy access.

The year 2015 will go down in history as one that laid the groundwork for the promised “acchhe din” (good times), with enough concrete indicators that the Indian economy is set for a bounce. A series of far reaching measures taken by the Narendra Modi government is slowly beginning to bear fruit. The most important of these is the decision to front load the government’s capital expenditure, especially in the roads and highways, railways and rural infrastructure sectors

India’s relations with the 54 nations of Africa have received a much-needed reboot as a result of the India-Africa Forum Summit in New Delhi this week. An additional concessional credit line of $10 billion came alongside pledges for India and Africa to interact closely across areas of mutual interest like energy, climate change, agriculture and terrorism. India also renewed its commitment to help develop infrastructure, public transport, clean energy, irrigation, agriculture and manufacturing capacity across Africa.

The Indian government’s Clean India programme seems to have made a mark with the country being ranked among the world’s top 5 clean energy business hotspots. Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) has ranked India behind China, Brazil, Chile and South Africa in its ‘Climatescope 2015’ report which analyses the attractiveness of 55 countries as best places for renewables companies to do business.

Vardaan Vasisht started his career in consulting at Accenture in India and moved to the US to join a start-up named Beyond Interactive, which at the time was setup in a dorm room at the University of Michigan and emerged as one of the first successful digital advertising agencies in the dot com boom era.

E-Mail* :
 
 
 
 
/category/year/