A panel of experts recently met to discuss India’s role in driving global growth and the future of globalization.
Speaking at a private breakfast hosted by the CII and BCG during the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman, the minister for Commerce and Industry, India said, “India has a bearing on everything that is happening globally. The three forces that will change globalization are the three in which India is making a difference: digitization, the restructuring of global supply chains, and the change in institutional frameworks."
She outlined how India is addressing these three key areas through a number of measures, including opening up many sectors that have not had previous significant investment, encouraging startups so as to make India a more innovative economy, and increasing public investment in infrastructure and rural areas.
Speaking about the investment in infrastructure and rural areas, Mr. Nitin Gadkari, the minister for Road Transport and Highways and Shipping, India, detailed the dynamic growth in India’s infrastructure and the competitive advantages that such growth brings.
“We are making dramatic additions and improvements to roadways, expanding express highways, investing in ports, including tourism, as well as electric buses, electric cars, and biofuels,” says Dr. Gadkari.
“We are also prioritizing agriculture and rural development, an important sector that has much potential. Our government is committed to growth and development; we are ready to take a lead in global development.”
Global economic power
India has been and continues to be a vibrant global economic power. As Dr. Naushad Forbes, the president of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) noted, “Every projection says that India will be one of the ten best-performing economies over the next 25 years, as it has been over the last 25.
“The strength of the Indian economy rests on a very strong and vibrant private sector, which adds to the richness of the economy. This contributes to a sense of resilience and strength going forward. India is very well positioned to be a driver of global growth.”
In his remarks, Mr. Chandrajit Banerjee, the director general of the CII, mentioned that globalization is facing headwinds and that India has the opportunity to lead and champion the cause of globalization.
Dr. Arindam Bhattacharya, a senior partner at The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and the leader of BCG India added, “Many are saying that globalization is dying. But global services and, within that, global digital services are growing rapidly.
“Pessimists are saying that the emerging-markets growth engine is faltering. But India is very well positioned in terms of some of the key drivers for strong growth. We have to look to the future to find a globalization for ourselves.”
As summarized by Dr. Hans-Paul Bürkner, BCG’s chairman: “Globalization has brought enormous benefits to billions of people around the world; billions of people have joined the world as active consumers, participants, and contributors.
“Globalization is under attack, and it needs to change its pace. India, as one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, has the strength to deliver on its promise to its people and the world.”