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Published by the Embassy of India, Vienna Year 5 • Issue 51 • March 2015


India Newsletter • 1

Embassy of India, Vienna

The new Government has prepared a five pillar strategy to drive India’s growth, which offer multiple avenues of collaboration and investments

■■ Infrastructure Development

■■ Manufacturing Growth

■■ Skill Development

■■ Energy Sufficiency

■■ Improved Business Environment 2 • India Newsletter



India has just been designated the official Partner Country at Hannovermesse 2015, putting this vast nation of more than 1.2 billion inhabitants squarely in the spotlight at the world’s leading industrial exhibition.


The total pan-India GSM subscriber base reached 687.42 million, with 8.87 million new GSM connections, in January 2015.


The average daily turnover on the bourses was Rs 3.84 trillion (US$ 61.84 billion) in the December 2014 quarter (Q3), more than double the turnover Rs 1.87 trillion (US$ 30.11 billion) in the same quarter a year ago.


Cash holdings of equity mutual funds in India rose by 80 basis points in January 2015, with the aggregate cash pile reaching Rs 12,000 crore (US$ 1.92 billion) by the end of the month.


India has produced 7.07 million tonnes (MT) of steel in January 2015 reporting the fourth highest production level globally.


The Internet of Things (IoT) industry in India is expected to touch US$ 15 billion by 2020.


The casual dining industry in India is expected to touch Rs 12,580 crore (US$ 2.03 billion) by 2020, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18 per cent.


Assets under management (AUM) of India’s mutual fund (MF) sector has touched a record high of Rs 11.8 trillion (US$ 188.14 billion) in January 2015, registering a growth of 12 per cent from the previous month.


India is home to the fourth largest number of billionaires across the world.


Coal production in India grew by 9.1 per cent to reach 426.7 million tonne (MT) during the first nine months of FY15.


India’s billionaire count (individuals with net worth of at least US$ 1 billion) is expected to double to 136 by 2024.


Passenger car sales in India reached 171,727 units in February

2014, registering a growth of 6.2 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y).


Chocolate sales in India has crossed Rs 10,000 crore (US$ 1.61 billion) in 2014, an increase of 24 per cent from last year.


India’s platinum demand is expected to reach 125,000 ounce (oz) in 2015, as compared to 100,000 oz in 2014, a growth of 25 per cent, according to London-based World Platinum Investment Council


India-Asean aim to double trade target to $200 bn by 2022.


Germany is India’s largest trading partner in Europe. Germany has consistently been among India’s top ten global trade partners and was the 6th largest trading partner in FY 2013-14 (5th during FY 2012-13).


Export of leather and leather products from India have increased from US$ 4,935.43 million in April 2013-January 2014 period to US$ 5,628.50 million during the April 2014-January 2015 period, registering an increase of 14.04 per cent. India Newsletter • 3

Embassy of India, Vienna



he Economic Survey 2014-15, was tabled in Parliament on February 27, 2015, by Mr Arun Jaitley, Union Minister for Finance, Government of India. The Survey forecasts a growth rate of over 8 per cent for FY16, as compared to the growth rate of 7.4 per cent in FY15. As per the Economic Survey, India must adhere to medium-term fiscal deficit target of 3 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). Robust reforms, push for Make in India and a better external environment indicate adouble-digit growth trajectory, highlighted the Survey.

■■ Expenditure control with growth recovery and GST will ensure that medium-term targets are met.

The main highlights of the survey are:

■■ Econometric evidence suggests that the railways public investment multiplier (the effect of a Rs 1 (US$ 0.016) increase in public investment in the railways on overall output) is around 5.

■■ Over 6 per cent points decline in inflation since late 2013. ■■ Current Account Deficit down from a peak of 6.7 per cent of GDP (in Q3, 2012-13) to an estimated 1 per cent in 2014-15. ■■ Foreign portfolio flows have stabilized the rupee. ■■ Real GDP growth at 7.2 per cent since 2013-14, after a nearly 12-quarter phase of deceleration. ■■ Inflation likely to remain in the 5-5.5 per cent range, creating space for easing of monetary conditions. ■■ GDP growth expected to accelerate between 8.1 and 8.5 per cent in 2015-16. ■■ Fiscal deficit target of 4.1 per cent appears achievable. ■■ Private investment to be the engine of long-run growth. ■■ Case for reviving targeted public investment as an engine of growth in the short run to complement and crowd-in private investment. ■■ India must adhere to medium-term fiscal deficit target of 3 percent of GDP. 4 • India Newsletter

■■ The quality of expenditure needs to be shifted from consumption to investment. ■■ The direct fiscal cost of all the subsidies is roughly Rs 378,000 crore (US$ 61.15 billion) or 4.2 percent of 2011-12 GDP. ■■ JAM Number Trinity – Jan Dhan Yojana, Aadhaar, Mobile can enable the State to transfer financial resources to the poor in a progressive manner without leakages and with minimal distorting effects.

■■ India has cut subsidies and increased taxes on fossil fuels (petrol and diesel along with a coal cess) turning a carbon subsidy regime into one of carbon taxation. The implicit carbon tax is US$ 140 for petrol and US$ 64 for diesel. ■■ FFC transfers are highly progressive; that is, states with lower per capita NSDP receive on average much larger transfers per capita. ■■ Food grain production for 201415 estimated at 257.07 million tonnes (MT); to exceed that of last 5 years by 8.5 million tonnes. ■■ Food Subsidy Bill stands at Rs 107,823.75 crore (US$ 17.43 billion) during 2014-15 (upto January, 2015), an increase of 20 per cent over previous year. ■■ Groundnut production increased by a massive 105.8 per cent in 201314, shows a remarkable increase of 75.9 per cent in productivity.

■■ Agriculture and allied sectors contribute 18 per cent to GDP and has grown by 3.7 per cent in 201314. ■■ Indian higher education system is one of the largest in the world with 713 universities, 36,739 colleges and 11,343 diploma-level institutions. ■■ As of December 2013 over 720 million citizens had been allocated an Aadhaar card. By December 2015 the total number of Aadhaar enrolments in the country is expected to exceed 1 billion. ■■ With over 900 million cell phone users and close to 600 million unique users, mobile money offers a complementary mechanism of delivering direct benefits to a large proportion of the population. And this number is increasing at a rate of 2.82 million per month. ■■ India has the largest postal network in the world with over 155,015 post offices of which (89.76 percent) are in the rural areas. ■■ Recovery of industrial production is led by the infrastructure sectors namely electricity, coal and cement. ■■ Civil aviation sector has seen healthy increase in international passengers and cargo handled at Indian airports during 2014-15. ■■ Major initiatives are implementation of public-private partnership (PPP) projects at four airports of the AAI, setting up of greenfield airports and development of small airports in tier II and tier III cities. ■■ India’s National Solar Mission being scaled up five-fold to 100,000 megawatts (MW). ■■ Clean energy cess doubled to Rs 100 (US$ 1.61) per tonne to mop up Rs 17,000 crores (US$ 2.74 billion) in NCEF.

NEWS ARTICLES India poised to become the second biggest start-up ecosystem in the next two years: Nasscom


ndia saw 800 new technology startups—taking the total number of start-ups to 3,100—setting up their ventures so far in 2014-15, as per ITBPO industry body Nasscom. India is poised to become the second biggest eco-system option after the US in the next two years on account of the ongoing high growth rates. “We expect that within the next couple of years, we will have the second biggest start-up ecosystem in the world,” said Mr R Chandrashekhar, President, Nasscom. He further pointed that the rate at which the start-ups are growing is much faster than Britain and Israel, which are ranked between India and worldwide leader US at present. The report further pointed that such start-ups have received over US$ 2.3 billion in funding since 2010, while over 70 private equity (PE) and venture capital (VC) funds remain active in the segment. Apart from this, there were over 62 angels active in 2014 and there are over 80 incubators and start-up accelerators operating in the country at present. The domestic companies address both opportunities within the country as well as internationally, observed Mr Chandrashekhar. The start-ups are engaged in areas which include wearable technologies, big data and analytics, augmented reality, cloud computing, hardware, education, advertising and healthcare, as per the report. India will have a large number of successful small companies, as against the global experience of having small number of mega successful companies who command huge valuations, pointed Mr Chandrashekhar.

India’s retail market expected to double in next 5 years: report


ndia’s retail market is expected to double to $1 trillion by 2020 from $600 billion in 2015 driven by income growth, urbanization and attitudinal shifts, a new report said. While the overall retail market will grow at 12% per annum, modern trade will grow twice as fast at 20% per annum, and traditional trade at 10%, said the Boston Consulting Group and Retailers Association of India report titled Retail 2020: Retrospect, Reinvent, Rewrite. Modern trade includes supermarkets, hypermarkets and other organized retail outlets, while much smaller grocery stores are classified under traditional channels. Modern trade is expected to grow three times to $180 billion in 2020 from $60 billion in 2015 and e-commerce at an even faster clip to quadruple in the same time to become a $60-70 billion market, said the report. By 2020, average household income will increase three times to $18,448 from $6393 in 2010. Moreover, urbanisation will increase to 40% from 31% and over 200 million households will be nuclear, representing a 2550% higher consumption per capita spend. Also, attitudinal shifts will be seen as 75% of the population will belong to generation I, that is they were below 14 years of age when the economy started opening and hence will have higher consumption levels, said the report. Additionally, digital is also shaping the way consumers buy. There are currently 35 million people buying online and this will increase to 100 million in the next two years, said Gaurav Kapur, head of industry for retail and automotive, Google India at the Retailers Association of India’s Retail Leadership Summit 2015

in Mumbai while sharing that the online growth is being driven by the tier III and tier IV cities. Consumers are buying everything online; even big-ticket items like houses, cars and two wheelers, said Kapur. The rapid growth of e-commerce has retailers thinking of their multichannel strategy. “E-commerce cannot be ignored,” said Neville Noronha, chief executive officer, Avenue Supermarts Ltd, which runs the D’Mart retail chain, adding his company is evaluating its e-commerce strategy. Even the Dubai-based Landmark Group which runs department store chain Lifestyle and Max in India is looking at leveraging different channels. “We want to invest in omni-channel,” said Ramanathan Hariharan, chief executive officer, Landmark Group. In the last year, most brick and mortar retailers Croma, Future Group which runs chains like Central and Big Bazaar and brands like Nike, Puma, Catwalk, Mango and Vero Moda have established their presence online through marketplaces like Flipkart, Amazon and Snapdeal. Currently, most brick and mortar companies don’t have a good multichannel offering and hence, in the short term, pure play e-commerce companies are winning, said Abheek Singhi, senior partner and director, BCG Mumbai while sharing that in the long term, multi-channel retail will gain ground. Meanwhile, brick and mortar retail challenges remain. For instance, the sales per square foot at Indian retail stores at Rs.1,500-2,000 per square foot is much lower than the international average of Rs.8,00012,000 per sq. ft. Even the gross margins are lower in India by 7-8% than the international standards and the rentals are higher by 1.5-3% on an average, said the report. India Newsletter • 5

Embassy of India, Vienna

India stands out among other BRIC nations: Mark Mobius


tating that India stands out among other BRIC nations, Mark Mobius of Templeton Emerging Markets Group told ET Now, “The government’s announcement on 9% reduction in subsidies is a good move.” According to Mobius, the reduction in corporate tax should up capital spending in the private sector. “Announcement on increase of capital spending is a positive,” Mobius added. Analysts gave finance minister Arun Jaitley’s budget an 8.2 out of 10, calling it balanced, progressive and innovative. They said Jaitley’s financial draft for India set the pace for addressing several long-pending issues. Experts felt the cut in corporate taxes, GAAR delay of 2 years, crackdown on illegal money, dropping of wealth tax will auger well for the markets. The Budget has received a mixed response from global rating agencies with the US-based S&P saying that the annual financial document seeks to keep the fiscal deficit in check despite subdued revenue growth. “India’s 2015-16 Budget highlights the government’s commitment to keep the fiscal deficit low despite lower-than-expected revenue growth,” Standard & Poor’s said. Another rating agency Moody’s said the Budget has prioritised growth over fiscal consolidation but it may not have any impact on the country’s sovereign rating. Fitch, however, said that the Budget has both positive and negative elements and that India’s mediumterm fiscal consolidation strategy is less inspiring.

India is fastest growing economy in world: PM Narendra Modi


rime Minister Narendra Modi said that India has become the fastest growing economy in world. 6 • India Newsletter

“India is the fastest growing economy in world with the GDP growth rate of 7.4%,” the Prime Minister said. Addressing a function after inaugurating the multimodal manufacturing project of GE at Chakan, Pune, the PM said that the government is focusing on ease of doing business in India. Talking about steps taken by the government to ease setting up of new businesses in India, the PM said that the number of permissions needed to set up hospitality industry being brought down from 110 to 20. PM Modi also said that the opportunities for manufacturing in India are immense. “Our effort is to make policies predictable in order to attract investments,” the PM said. PM Modi further said that “we are blessed with demographic dividend”. “India offers immense opportunities for ship-building sector,” the PM said, inviting US-based GE to manufacture ships in the country.

Exports key to the success of Make In India initiative – Nirmala Sitharaman


overnment to set up an Advisory Committee to suggest key measures to boost export performance. Union Minister for Commerce & Industry Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman said in Mumbai, that exports play a key role in ensuring success of the Make In India initiative. Speaking at the ECGC Dun & Bradstreet Export Performance Award ceremony in the city on Saturday night, the Minister said “ manufacturing in India can be much more than what it is today, from the point of view of what it contributes towards the GDP. When I say manufacturing in India, both in volume and value, I include our exporters, who even in difficult times have kept their nose above water.” Ms Sitharaman reiterated government’s commitment to ‘ease of doing business’ and assured the gathering that similar measures will be extended to the export sector as well. For this purpose, the Minister

said, she is planning to constitute of Committee, that can suggest thrust areas and key measures which can yield quick results as well as help formulate a long term export strategy. “This is a government that is fully willing to hear, fully willing to listen and fully willing to act. “ she added. The Minister asserted while a lot is being said, a lot is being done also at the government level. She said the e-biz portal launched recently by the Finance Minister was a great boon for the manufacturers and exporters. Another portal helps exporters gather information about which product is in demand where. Ms. Sitharaman said the profile of the Indian exporters has changed over the last two decades and our products are no longer considered of inferior quality. “ It is no longer the story that we would hear 2030 years ago, that Indian products need quality enhancement, they need to be trustworthy, there are no arguments of this kind anymore. Many of the products like pharmaceuticals, automobile components, textiles, are reaching certain standards which make the nation proud “ Sitharaman added. She further said access to markets abroad is restricted not because Indian exporters are found lacking in quality or product diversification, but because of the protectionist measures of countries which want to keep Indian exporters at a distance, in order to help their own exporters or protect their smaller and upcoming industries. The Minister later presented ECGC D&B Indian Exporters’ Excellence Awards 2015 to 33 companies from various fields like overall export performance, innovation, risk management practices, SEZ exports, women entrepreneurs etc. Companies with minimum 10% revenue from exports during FY 201314 were eligible for nominations. Indian software major TCS bagged the Best Overall Exporter award in the large companies category, while Pune based Serum Institute of India

was won the Best Manufacturer Exporter award. On the eve of the International Women’s Day, Nirmala Sitharaman expressed special appreciation for the Bengaluru (Bangalore) based Himatsingka Seide in which women constitute 90% of the employees. MD & CEO of Bank of Baroda, Ranjan Dhawan, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Commerce & Industry Arvind Mehta, Geeta Muralidhar, CMD of ECGC, key personnel of financial institutions, export houses, industry bodies and corporate attended the event.

WABAG JV wins EUR 30 million JICA funded Ganga Action Plan Project in Varanasi, India


A TECH WABAG Ltd., India won an order for a value of around EUR 30 million for Design and Construction of 140,000 m3/d Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) at Dinapur, Varanasi including Operation and Maintenance for ten years. The scope for WABAG includes Design, Engineering, Supply, Installation, Testing and Commissioning of the Sewage Treatment Plant whereas the civil construction will be carried out by the JV partner. The order is part of JICA – Funded Ganga Action Plan Project and the implementation agency for this project is Ganga Pollution Prevention Unit of UP Jal Nigam, Varanasi. WABAG would employ the Activated Sludge Process with Biogas based Power Generation for this project. This process will help the plant to generate power from biogas and the plant would largely be selfsustainable using this “Green Energy”. This will not only help the project to reduce its operational costs but will also reduce the carbon emissions and thus will qualify for carbon credits. Commenting on the development, Mr. S Natrajan, Head – Sales, WABAG India said “We are proud to be part of this Ganga Action Plan Project at Dinapur, Varanasi and this order once again demonstrates our proven capabilities in execution and

operation of power neutral sewage treatment plants.”

Voestalpine Steel to Decide on EUR 140 Mln Investment in China by Mid-2015 In a press conference where Wolfgang Eder, CEO of listed Austrian steel group Voestalpine, announced the decision on the construction of a EUR 140 million stainless steel plant in China in H1 2015, he also commented that the group is expanding in India and plans to “massively develop” there, the CEO said. Voestalpine’s biggest investment, the EUR 550 million facility in Corpus Christi, Texas, is “nearly in two-thirds completed,” Eder added. Voestalpine is currently focusing its investments outside Europe due to the low European growth rates.

India, Asean aim to double trade target to $200 bn by 2022


s the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) looks to coalesce into an economic community with a single market and production base at the end of this year, India is looking to deepen its interaction with the region with further liberalized tariff lines and a maritime transport pact. Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj, inaugurating an India-Asean meeting attended by policymakers and think-tanks from both sides, said India shared maritime boundaries with many Asean countries, which was important from a trade perspective. “We have started negotiations on an Asean-India maritime transport cooperation agreement, and hope that it will be finalized by the end of the year,” she said, noting that bilateral trade had crossed $76 billion in 2013 and that it was largely balanced, reflecting the strong complementarities between the Indian and the Asean economies. The trade target for this year is $100 billion and both sides are aiming to

double it to $200 billion by 2022, Swaraj said adding: “We will have to significantly augment the utilization level of the agreement on trade in goods (signed in 2009) and further liberalize the tariff lines. I am glad that the process has started to revive the Asean-India trade negotiations committee to kick-start these discussions.” India, she said, was focused on reorienting its partnership with Asean to “make it more pragmatic, actiondriven and result-oriented. For this, we need to intensify our cooperation in security, trade, investment, connectivity and capacity building and strengthening people-to-people linkages.” India began its interaction with the Asean in the early 1990s with the launch of its Look East policy. It was mainly aimed at increasing economic engagement and interaction between India— especially its underdeveloped northeasterrn region—and Asia’s high growth economic grouping. In her speech, Swaraj described India’s Northeast as a “land-bridge to the Asean” and added that India was looking at expanding air connectivity between the region and Southeast Asia. Starting out as a sectoral dialogue partner in 1996, India was elevated to a strategic partner of Asean in 2012. Swaraj noted that two-way investment flows were “substantial,” with the Asean accounting for approximately 12.5% of investment flows into India since 2000. Indian investments in Asean over the last 7 years topped $31 billion, while foreign direct investment equity inflows in India from Asean over the same period crossed $25 billion, according to Indian government figures. With Prime Minister Narendra Modi launching the Make in India campaign to boost India’s manufacturing base, “Asean companies could look for investments in a large number of sectors such as smart cities, roads and highways, ports, railways, power and India Newsletter • 7

Embassy of India, Vienna

urban infrastructure. The India-Asean agreements on trade in services and investment (expected to come into force in July) will also unleash large potential for mutual investment.” she said. On increased connectivity, Swaraj said India was engaged in several projects like the trilateral highway project that was looking at “seamless connectivity” from Moreh in Manipur in the Northeast to Mae Sot in Thailand through Myanmar. “We have also started negotiations on an India-Myanmar-Thailand Transit Transport Agreement to address soft connectivity issues,” she said. Another project is the Kaladan multimodal transport project for a road and riverine link between Myanmar and Mizoram. In his comments, Thai deputy prime minister and finance minister Tanasak Patimapragorn described India as a “strong” Asean partner, noting that the two sides had a combined gross domestic product of $4 trillion. “We are excited about India under Prime Minister Modi,” he said, adding that his country was ready to be India’s gateway to Southeast Asia. “Conversely, India can be Thailand’s gateway to South Asia and Middle

German specialty chemicals maker Evonik acquires Monarch Catalyst


erman specialty chemicals manufacturer Evonik Industries AG said it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Mumbai-based catalyst supplier Monarch Catalyst Pvt. Ltd. The two firms did not disclose the value of the transaction. The transaction is expected to close during the first half of 2015 after the required approvals are received, Evonik said. “Monarch’s global oils & fats hydrogenation catalysts business is a broadening of the Evonik catalysts portfolio,” the firm said in the release. Evonik has a presence in almost 100 countries around the world. It serves life sciences and fine chemicals, industrial and petrochemical market segments. It reported sales of €12.9 billion in financial year 2014 and an operating profit of about €1.9 billion. Monarch is a family owned enterprise founded in 1973 by Dr. K. Muthukumar and Shantibhai Vadalia with its production site in Dombivli (India), near Mumbai. Avendus Capital Pvt. Ltd was the sole financial advisor to Monarch Catalyst for the transaction. The Monarch deal highlights the continuing attractiveness of Indian chemical sector for strategic foreign investors. Last November, Japanbased Nihon Nohyaku Co. Ltd announced that it is acquiring 74% stake in Hyderabad Chemical Ltd for an undisclosed amount. Hyderabad Chemical is a agrochemical manufacturer with its own distribution network and research and development function.

East,” he added. The Thai deputy prime minister later held talks with Swaraj and defence minister Manohar Parikkar, a person familiar with the development said. Swaraj would be visiting Thailand in June, the person added. 8 • India Newsletter

Indian companies continue to witness rise in deals: Grant Thornton


uring February, Indian companies witnessed 113 deals worth $3.4 billion, an increase of 40% in terms of volume and around 36% in terms of deal value as compared to the same

period last year, according to the latest Deal Tracker report by Grant Thornton India Llp. Inbound deals continue to witness upward trend, led by a pharmaceutical deal in which US-based Mylan Inc. agreed to pay $800 million including contingent payments of $50 million to acquire certain female healthcare businesses of Famy Care Ltd. This was the fourth largest pharma deal in the country to date. Last month, three other deals valued over $100 million were announced, the report added. In the private equity (PE) segment, transactions continue to be driven by e-commerce firms and PE investment activity witnessed 135% increase in volumes as compared to the previous period in February 2014. Though the deal value fell by 7%, during last month, PE firms invested $737 million in Indian companies as against $794 million during the corresponding period last year. The largest transaction last month was Equis Funds Group’s investment in a real estate project of Bangalorebased Assetz Property Group. The fund invested $116 million according to the Deal Tracker data. Other deals include online recharge company raising $80 million from Tybourne Capital, Valiant Capital, Sequoia Capital, Sofina and Ru-Net. “Last month saw two listed companies raising capital through qualified institutional placement and collectively raising $425 million. February 2015 saw a 125% increase in domestic deal values,” the Deal Tracker report added. Cross border transactions witnessed a fall of 65% in terms of volume but deal value has gone up by 36%. Off the 17 cross-border deals, eight deals were struck by Indian companies in foreign shores. The deal value for outbound transactions was recorded at $278 million as against $122 million last year in the same period. Even during January, 118 deals were closed worth $3.4 billion, up by 36% in terms of deal volume and 112% in terms of value, as compared with the same month last year.

India is key to connect billions across the world to the Internet: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg


ndia is the key to connect billions across the world to the Internet, Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg said, as the social networking giant tied up with Reliance Communications to launch the app in a country where smartphone sales growth is among the fastest globally. The app will offer users access to free basic Internet services for health, education, jobs and communication. “One day, we will connect everyone, and the power of the Internet will serve every community across India and the world. That day is coming,” Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post. “But to continue connecting the world, we have to connect India.” Zuckerberg was referring to the over 1 billion of India’s 1.2 billion population without an Internet connection, although most of them have mobile phones. As of December end, India had almost 944 million mobile phone users. Comparatively, India had over 243 million Internet users at the end of last year, of which 86 million had broadband access. He recounted his visit in October to Chandauli, a small village in

northern India, which recently got connected to the Internet. Students at a computer centre in the village were learning to use the Internet for the first time. “Knowledge and tools were starting to make life better for everyone,” he said. Facebook intends to take this initiative forward through the launch of initially in six states - Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Kerala and Telangana - and then gradually across the country. This is the first time the app will be available in the region. is an initiative to provide Internet access to those who don’t have it, along with free basic services. Gurdeep Singh, Reliance Communications’ chief executive (wireless business), estimated that about 60 million users will experience data for the first time through this application. “For me, even if this brings customer loyalty and reduces churn, it is worthwhile,” said Singh. The company has a high number of customers that leave and enter the network. Getting a new user is associated with costs typically equivalent to three months of customer spends on the network. provides access to popular websites and services with zero data charges in order to make

it easier for people to access the Internet, across both 2G and 3G platforms, the two companies said in a joint statement. RCom customers in the six states will now have access to more than three dozen services ranging from news, maternal health, travel, local jobs, sports, communication and local government information. Besides accessing Facebook, RCom subscribers can also browse 33 websites. “Over the last year, we’ve rolled out free basic services to countries with more than 150 million people total across Africa and Latin America,” Zuckerberg said. “More than 6 million people are already connected to the Internet who previously weren’t.” Facebook has tied up with Bharti Airtel to offer in two African countries. RCom customers in India can access these services in the Android app at from the start screen of the Opera Mini mobile web browser and using the Android app UC Browser for For other phones, the service can be used directly through the browser. Most of the services will be available in English, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Gujarati and Marathi.

INDIAN EMBASSY LIBRARY EMBASSY’S LIBRARY ■■ The Embassy’s library is opened daily from 10am to 1pm without appointment. ■■ Our collection contains more than 2000 titles in dozens of categories. ■■ For scheduling an appointment outside the opening hours or to inquiry on a book or topic of interest in our collection, please contact the information assistant under infoasstt@ or 01 505 8666 33 ■■ Download our latest catalog of books under EmbassyLibrary.pdf India Newsletter • 9

Embassy of India, Vienna

MAKE IN INDIA Summary ■■ 3rd biggest biotech industry in the Asia-Pacific region. ■■ 2nd highest number of USFDA– approved plants. ■■ USD 3.7 Billion to be spent on biotechnology from 2012-17. ■■ No. 1 producer of Hepatitis B vaccine recombinant. ■■ USD 4.3 Billion bio-economy by the end of 2013. ■■ USD 100 Billion industry by 2025.

Reasons to Invest ■■ India is amongst the top 12 biotech destinations in the world and ranks third in the Asia-Pacific region. ■■ India has the second-highest number of USFDA–approved plants, after the USA. ■■ India adopted the product patent regime in 2005. ■■ Increasing government expenditure will augment the growth of the sector — the government aims to spend USD 3.7 Billion on biotechnology between 2012-17. ■■ India is the largest producer of recombinant Hepatitis B vaccine. ■■ India has the potential to become a major producer o  f transgenic rice and several genetically modified (GM) o  r engineered vegetables.

Statistics ■■ The Indian biotech industry will grow at an average growth rate of around 30% a year and reach USD 100 Billion by 2025. ■■ The Indian bio-economy grew to USD 4.3 Billion at the end of 2013, up from USD 530 Million in 2003. ■■ The Indian biotech industry grew by 15.1% in 2012–13, increasing the market’s revenues from USD 3.31 Billion in 2011-12 to USD 3.81 Billion in 2012–13. 10 • India Newsletter

■■ The market size of the sector is expected to rise up to USD 11.6 Billion by 2017 due to a range of factors such as growing demand for healthcare services, intensive R&D activities and strong government initiatives. ■■ The Indian biotechnology sector is divided into five major segments — bio-pharma, bio-services, bio-agri, bio-industrial and bioinformatics. ■■ The bio-pharmaceutical sector accounts for the largest share of the biotech industry with a share of 64% in total revenues in 2013, followed by bio-services (18%), bio-agri (14%), bio-industrial (3%) and bioinformatics (1%). ■■ Revenue from bio-pharma exports reached USD 2.2 Billion in 2013, accounting for 51% of total revenues of the biotech industry

exports and the government’s focus on the sector.

Growth Drivers

FDI Policy

■■ The sector has seen high growth with a CAGR in excess of 20% and the key drivers for growth in the biotech sector are increasing investments, outsourcing activities,

■■ Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) up to 100% is permitted through the automatic route for greenfield and through the government route for brownfield, for pharmaceuticals.

■■ A strong pool of scientists and engineers. ■■ Cost-effective capabilities.


■■ The setting up of national research laboratories, centres of academic excellence in biosciences, several medical colleges, educational and training institutes offering degrees and diplomas in biotechnology, bioinformatics and biological sciences. ■■ For global companies looking to economise, outsourcing to lower cost economies results in a cost arbitrage of more than 50%. clinical ■■ Fast-developing capabilities with the country becoming a popular destination for clinical trials, contract research and manufacturing activities.

Sector Policy

Financial Support

Investment Opportunities



■■ The

■■ Service tax exemption for services provided by operators of common bio-medical waste treatment facilities to a clinical establishment by way of treatment or disposal of bio-medical waste or processes incidental thereto.

biotech parks  in various parts of

■■ Refund of customs duty paid at the time of import of scientific and technical instruments, apparatus, etc. by public funded and other research institutions, subject to submission of a certificate of registration from the Department of Scientific & Industrial Research.

Pradesh, Bangalore in Karnataka,

STEM CELL RESEARCH 2O13: ■■ The guidelines have been laid down to ensure that research with human stem cells is conducted in a responsible and ethical manner and complies with all regulatory requirements



biomedical research in general and of stem cell research in particular. ■■ These guidelines apply to all stakeholders including individual researchers, organizations, sponsors, oversight/regulatory


and any other associated with both basic and clinical research on all types of human stem cells and their derivatives. ■■ GUIDELINES







Similar by


Central Drugs Standard Control Organization




Department of Biotechnology (DBT) lay down the regulatory pathway for a biologic claiming to be similar to an already authorized reference biologic. ■■ The




regulatory pathway regarding the manufacturing process and quality aspects for similar biologics. ■■ These guidelines also address the pre-market regulatory requirements including a comparability exercise for quality, preclinical and clinical studies and post-market regulatory requirements for similar biologics.

■■ OTHER INCENTIVES: ■■ Depreciation allowance on plant and machinery has been raised to 40% from 25%.






the country to facilitate product development,



innovation, and the development of biotechnology industrial clusters. ■■ Operational



are located at Lucknow in Uttar Kalamassery and Kochi in Kerala, Guwahati in Assam and Chindwara in Madhya Pradesh. ■■ The








facilities for solvent extraction and laboratory and office spaces. ■■ India constitutes around 8% of the total global generics market, by volume, indicating a huge untapped opportunity in the sector.

■■ Customs duty exemption on goods imported in certain cases for R&D.

■■ Outsourcing to India is projected

■■ Customs and excise duty exemption to recognised Scientific & Industrial Research Organisations (SIRO).

■■ Hybrid seeds, including GM

■■ 150% weighted tax deduction on R&D expenditure.

to spike up after the discovery and manufacture of formulations. seeds,




opportunities in India based on yield improvement.

Foreign Investors

■■ A 3-year excise duty waiver on patented products.

■■ Limagrain (France)

■■ 100% rebate on own R&D expenditure.

■■ Mylan Inc. (USA)

■■ 125% rebate if research is contracted in publicly-funded R&D institutions.

■■ Abbot Laboratories (USA)

■■ Joint R&D projects are provided with special fiscal benefits.

■■ Endo Pharmaceuticals (USA) ■■ Sanofi Aventis (France) ■■ Fresenius (Singapore) ■■ Hospira (USA)

Agencies for Contact

■■ The setting up of a venture capital fund to support small and medium enterprises.

■■ The



■■ Promoting innovations through BIPP, SBIRI, BIRAC and biotech parks.

■■ The Association of Biotechnology

Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India Led Enterprises India Newsletter • 11

Embassy of India, Vienna

PERSPECTIVES ON INDIA Moving on – Some observations regarding the economic outlook for FY16 by Dr. Wilfried Aulbur, Managing Partner, Roland Berger Strategy. he Indian economy has faced a few tough years recently. This article looks at the current economic environment, actions taken by the government and their impact, in particular on the commercial vehicle industry as a key economic indicator, and will provide an outlook towards FY16. The current economic environment As Fig. 1 shows, the last 2-3 years have been challenging for the Indian economy. However, the last 2 quarters have provided us with the first rays of hope after a long time. Quarterly GDP figures lead to an average growth of 5.5%, clearly higher than growth in FY14. Inflation has come down dramatically. In November 2014, Wholesale Price Inflation was 0%, Consumer Price Inflation as low as 4.4%. The main drivers were food inflation (reduced from 9.6% in May 2014 to 4.9% in December 2014) and fuel inflation (10.5% in May 2014, -8.5% in December 2014). As a consequence, RBI was able to reverse monetary policy and to reduce interest rates by 25 bps. Capital inflows into the economy have been strong and quarterly FDI has been consistently above USD 7 bn over the last 3 quarters. Business confidence indices such as IMA’s BCPI and HSBC’s Purchasing Manager Index point solidly towards expansion. Some areas of concern remain and indicate that a full recovery is yet about to happen. IIP numbers still fluctuate around zero and passenger car sales have been a somewhat erratic surging strongly after the election of the new government and falling into negative territory in September and October. Non-food credit growth remains in the low double digits indicating that full confidence into the turnaround of the economy is yet to emerge.


12 • India Newsletter

For OEMs, dealers and fleet operators, the overall environment has improved markedly. Falling diesel prices and reduced interest rates had a positive impact on the profitability of transporters. At the same time, truck capacity utilization has improved and drives transporters to look seriously at both new purchases and replacements. Hikes of 25-40% in rail haulage charges lead to a 15-20% cost advantage of road transport vs rail and drive additional traffic from railways to the trucking industry. Strict overloading bans and their enforcement lead to additional capacity addition, the phasing out of the excise duty led to a significant prebuying effect. Auctioning of coal, iron ore, copper, zinc, bauxite and other mines bodes well for tippers. As a consequence, the MHCV cargo segment is likely to see an overall growth of 12% and end up at about 2/3 of FY11 volumes. While ICV and MCV Cargo will contract by 13.2% and 5.3%, respectively, Rigids (> 16t, including tippers) will grow at a respectable 20.6% and Haulage Tractor-Trailers (> 26.4t) show a very strong performance with growth of about 82.7%. With this growth, Rigids will be at close to 70% of FY11 volumes while Haulage Tractor-Trailers will be at 83%, respectively. Overall, a clear shift to higher tonnage vehicles is visible across the segments. For OEMs, this is good news. Margins in the MHCV segment are typically good and OEMs have worked hard to increase efficiencies during the last 2-3 years. Many monetized noncore assets, reduced working capital, reinforced product line ups, increased their focus on alternative business areas such as exports and defense business, etc. Tata Motors reports a reduction of breakeven points in the CV business to 35-40% from an earlier 50%, a number that is far better than that of most Triad competitors. With higher capacity utilization in key factories due to stronger sales, we are likely to see stronger results coming

out of these OEMs going forward. The improved business environment will also lead to a gradual reduction in discounts. Current discounts are still around 10% but have come down from 15+% during the height of the crisis. This will lead to better financial health of OEMs and dealers alike. Unfortunately, the picture is not uniform across all segments at the moment. Due to severe difficulties in financing, the SCV segment continues to contract in FY15. Extrapolation of sales figures for FY15 indicate a 53% drop vs FY14 in the SCV passenger segment and a 14% drop in the SCV cargo segment. With official NPAs at 4-6% (and off-line discussions that indicate 3-5 times higher dud loans), banks will shy away from financing assets that are perceived as risky for some time to come. For LCVs, the scenario is slightly more positive. Volumes in FY15 for both, the Passenger and Cargo segment, are likely to stagnate at FY14 levels. Impact of the new government The positive momentum and desire for development, growth and transparency that brought the BJP to power about 8 months ago, led to BJP victories in Haryana, Maharashtra and Jharkand as well as a strong showing in Jammu and Kashmir. Since then, the government has amended the companies act, repealed about 90 obsolete laws, introduced the GST bill and issued ordinances regarding the new coal and insurance bill, the amended land acquisition act, the allowance for spectrum auctions and the regularization of Delhi’s unauthorized colonies, among others. Steps taken to remove discretion and simplify procedures, e.g., related to factory inspection and forest and environmental clearances are also noteworthy as are the clearance of 186 of 557 pending projects to the tune of INR 6.9 trn and the increase in FDI limits through the automatic route to 49% in Defense. Banking reforms and a protection of bank PSUs from political influence are being talked

about and would go a long way in safeguarding the banks from getting into the kind of trouble that they are currently in. On the foreign policy front, the government has struck a vital and remarkable alliance with the US and Japan and continues its friendship with its largest trading partner, the EU. These alliances will drive benefit for India in terms of increased investments and better market access. All these steps are positive stimuli for FY16 and beyond and a GDP growth of 6.5% for FY16appears realistic. With this kind of growth, India may be poised to grow faster than China. To keep the momentum and increase the impact of these measures, a strong, pro-growth budget is necessary. Key steps are increased investments and ensuring that investments that are cleared are spent during the fiscal year, an introduction of GST, labor reforms, tax reforms to simplify taxes for companies and individuals, and a stringent drive to cut red tape as well as a recapitalization of key banks. These reforms and their implementation are crucial. Take GST as an example. Lack of adequate infrastructure and an integrated tax structure continues to lead to severe inefficiencies of truck operators. On average, a truck covers 280 km/day vs a global average of 400 km/day and 700 km/day in the US. Logistic inefficiencies in India lead to an escalated logistics cost that is 200 bps higher than that of best-in-class countries with significant negative impact on the Indian economy.

the amount at approximately USD 85 bn, is potentially necessary to correct this situation. The sudden drop in oil prices is a windfall profit for the government in some sense. It has driven inflation down and allowed the government to increase its war chest of forex reserves to record highs. Low inflation does give RBI an opportunity to lower interest rates. If inflation remains subdued in FY16, a further rate cut of 50 to 75 bps should be possible with corresponding benefits for private consumption. Low oil prices are also a reflection of global political instability and economic weakness. Contrary to the initial years of the UPA government, the current government will not be able to sail a wave of global economic expansion. It is likely to have more head- rather than tailwinds from the global economic environment increasing the need to drive reforms and get the job done within India. If the government tackles this challenge successfully, however, it does have the opportunity to position India as the next growth superpower surpassing traditional rivals such as China. Outlook on FY16 - the good days should soon be here As discussed in the previous two

sections, the overall environment is positive for India as an economy and as a consequence for the Commercial Vehicles sector. Based on solid GDP growth of 6.5% in FY16, we should see strong double digit growth in MHCVs. MHCVs reflect the overall strength of the economy and are normally the first facing decline when the economy is in a recession. They also serve as an lead indicator of better times when the economy turns around. Based on this rule-of-thumb, we should see a turnaround in the SCV and LCV segments latest in the second half of FY16 with overall growth rates in the upper single digits. Interest rate reductions and their impact on increased consumption will have a major impact on these segments since they are focussed on last mile distribution. The financial situation of OEMs, operators and dealers should gradually improve during FY16, however, new capacity additions are unlikely to happen before FY17 since capacity utilization rates still have some way to recover to reach 80+%. In short, with a focus on implementation of reform and a strong, pro-growth budget, we are certain to finally reach the light at the end of the tunnel.

Recapitalization of banks is another example. With potential dud loans of banks being 3 to 5 times higher than the 4-6% NPA that are published, we may face a situation where dud loans are large enough to wipe out bank equity capital. Together with more stringent guidelines such as Basel III, banks will stay away from financing risky assets such as steel and mining projects that typically require spreads that are 4-5% higher than the base rate. A recapitalization, some estimates put India Newsletter • 13

Embassy of India, Vienna

INDIAN TRADE FAIRS INTERESTED IN VISITING A TRADE SHOW IN INDIA? In case your company is interested in visiting a tradeshow/B2B event in India, be it one listed here or another one that came to your attention, get in contact with us via to get more information about possible assistance/subsidies.

14 • India Newsletter

INDIAN HOUSEWARE AND DECORATIVES SHOW At IHDS you’ll find what you’re looking for and discover what you yearned for ... IHDS is India’s foremost b2b consumer products show, presenting indulgent of selections in houseware, kitchenware, tableware, bathroom accessories as well as decoratives. Aptly timed for year-round sourcing, the attractive setting of the show and the select premium exhibits offer an unrivalled opportunity to source houseware collections. A first of its kind show in India, it will prove to be the sourcing destination for all importers, wholesalers, distributors, retail chains and specialty

stores for a variety of houseware products. The fair’s unique potential in the home and gifts sector is perfectly aligned with the expectations of an evolving market. With an extensive choice of mercandise on offer, the emphasis is on material, design, value addition, utility and competitively priced products. IHDS is tailored to be an unmatched one-stop fair for all your sourcing needs for a variety of houseware products. This show is being held concurrentlly with two other complementing premium industry shows under the banner - HOME EXPO 2015. Exhibitors are 350 leading manufacturers of houseware, decoratives and allied products from the length & breadth of the country.

India Newsletter • 15

Embassy of India, Vienna

INDIAN FURNISHINGS, FLOORINGS AND TEXTILES SHOW The best of ideas, the most stimulating of impluses, the most exciting of products - don’t miss this unique event, conceived only for those desirous of sourcing niche products from India. Profit from a hand picked range no matter whether you buy in small or large quantities. Designed for international buyers to source a premium choice in textiles, furnishings and floorings from Indian manufacturers, IFFTEX 2015 is bringing together 250 select manufacturers &

16 • India Newsletter

exporters of textiles and allied products from all over India. This is a premium platform displaying the best of the best that India has to offer in home furnishings, textiles, accessories, floorings and carpets, etc. While the show is all set to play host to buyers from India’s main textile markets like USA, Germany, UK, France, Italy, Australia and sweden, it is expected to route in buying representation from other EU nations, Latin America, Middle East, CIS countries and the ASEAN region.


Organized with the primary objective of bringing before the world, a select repertoire of furniture & accessories from India, IFAS - Indian Furniture & Accessories Show is an exclusive international b2b show, being held at India Expo Centre & Mart, New Delhi from 16-18 April, 2015. IFAS showcases the finest in craftsmanship & artistic elements in perfect harmony with modern designs and new product developments. Sure to lure are classy wooden furniture with or without intricate metal sheeting & etching work, intricately carved woodware, marble tabletops with colourful blossoms or geometrics

in inlay, copper bathware for a theme bath area, EPNS decor items and elegant wrought iron furniture, squeky clean looking interesting quartz furniture, aluminium, steel and other metal furniture, refreshing bamboo to warm up cozy spaces, stone and metal figurines to liven up outdoor spaces and even leather and burlap lending a rustic touch to multi-utility items. myriad textures, colours and finishes too cast their spell! Exhibitors are 250 leading manufacturers of furniture, woodcraft and other allied products. Expect furniture & accessories from all major manufacturing hubs like Jaipur, Jodhpur, Saharanpur, Moradabad, Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Bareilly, Chennai, North-East region, etc..

India Newsletter • 17

Embassy of India, Vienna



The exhibitors will showcase new products along the entire industrial value chain. The world’s leading show for industrial technology highlights innovations and groundbreaking solutions in all the core sectors - i.e. industrial automation and IT, energy and environmental technology, industrial supply, production engineering and services, as well as research and development.

18 • India Newsletter

INVEST INDIA Federation House, Tansen Marg New Delhi—110 001 0091-11-23765085, 23487278


nvest India is the country’s official agency dedicated to investment promotion and facilitation. Set up as a joint venture between FICCI (51% equity), DIPP (35% equity held by the Department of Industrial

policy and Promotion, Ministry of Commerce & Industry) and State Governments of India (0.5% each), its mandate is to become the first reference point for the global investment community. It provides granulated, sectorspecific and state-specific information to a foreign investor, assists in expediting regulatory approvals, and offers hand-holding services. Its mandate also includes assisting Indian investors make informed choices about investment opportunities overseas.

India Newsletter • 19

Embassy of India, Vienna

SPIC MACAY a voluntary movement that organizes events of classical music, dance and art forms in educational institutions throughout the world. SPIC MACAY is committed to promoting an appreciation of Indian culture by rendering programmes of Indian classical music and dance, folk, poetry, theatre, traditional paintings, crafts & yog primarily in schools and colleges. SPIC MACAY is organising its 3rd International Convention at the Indian Institute of Technology - Bombay (IIT-B) in Mumbai from 31st May to 6th June 2015, where about 1800 participants will gather from all over the country and abroad to rededicate themselves to this voluntary movement. At this weeklong event, over 300 artistes would be participating from different parts of the country. There would be performances of classical music & dance, folk, theatre and talks by several inspiring and eminent artists. We would also be having intensives and workshops conducted by inspiring gurus and master craftsmen. National Conventions are the congregation of the people associated with this Noble Cause, who spend one week in a unique ashram-like atmosphere. The Annual Convention is a unique experience where participants get to witness great 20 • India Newsletter

artists performing classical music & dance, folk and theatre. Several intensives and workshops are organized where the participants learn the form from the inspiring gurus (inspiring Masters) for 5 days. The day starts at 4 am where the participants do the naad yog followed by hatha yog. Crafts village is one special feature of the convention where Master craftsmen sensitise the participants about various crafts for 5 days. Screenings of cinema classics include the great works be legendary film-makers like Akira Kurosawa, Satyajit Ray, Charlie Chaplin, Ingmar Bergman, Shyam Benegal, etc. Several talks by inspiring people and panel discussions are organized. The convention culminates with an over-night series of concerts. The performances at this convention will include Kishori Amonkar ( vocal ), Dr L Subramanyam (violin), Girija Devi (vocal), Shiv Kumar Sharma (santoor), Shankaranarayan ( Carnatic Vocal) and others The Conventions have been organized in different cities of the country every year. The lodging and boarding is arranged by SPIC MACAY for the participants without any costs. Participants will need to find their own travel costs. For online registrations and further details, please visit

TOURISM State Profile: Andhra Pradesh


ndhra Pradesh attracts the largest number of tourists in India. 3.2

million visitors visit the state every year. With more than 600 tourist locations, the second largest coast line in the country, 1000 years of history and pilgrimage centres of every major religion of India, AP is truly “The essence of India”. Andhra Pradesh’s capital city, Hyderabad has the atmosphere of an Arabian Nights fairy tale. Whimsical palaces, erstwhile stately homes and crowded bazaars filled with shops selling Hyderabadi pearls, incense and copper utensils character-ise the city, while in the distance looms Golconda Fort. The city’s historical connection traces itself to the rulers or Nizams whose wealth was legendary. Rooms full of jewels and currency notes, a garage full of gleaming Rolls Royce’s are all now part of history, but a unique culture lives on, colouring the city with its distinctive charm. The Epicurean tastes of this most exalted royal house of princely India gave rise to a fabled cuisine based on painstaking preparations and slow cooking. Much of Hyderabad’s old town can be covered on foot. The city’s important landmarks include Char-minar, a 16th century gateway; the Salar Jung Museum which ex-hibits priceless treasures alongside trivia that made up the person-al collection of the owner; Mecca Mosque and Golconda Fort. Na-garjunakonda is the site of ongoing excavations which have revealed Buddhist temples, stupas and monasteries. India Newsletter • 21

Embassy of India, Vienna

State Profile: Odisha


disha has a chequered history which has successfully assimilated and synthesised the best of Buddhist, Jain and Hindu cultures. Odisha or Kalinga as it was then called was a settlement of non-Aryan and Aryan settlers. It was a formidable maritime empire with trading routes stretching up to Bali, Sumatra, Indonesia and Java. The key to international trade and immense wealth, it was coveted by many rulers. In fact, it was here that the famous Battle of Kalinga was fought in 261 BC, which made the great Mauryan Kshatri-ya (warrior caste) king Ashoka forsake war. He became a follower of Buddhism and spread the spirit of ahimsa and peace, the message of Buddhism, to Ceylon (modern day Sri Lanka) and the Far East, Exquisite remains of the Buddhist past still remain in the are-as of Udaygiri, Lalitagiri and Ratnagiri. Kharavela, who came to power in Kalinga, around 1st Century BC, was a staunch follower of Jainism. It is to this period that Odisha owes its Jain art and ar-chitectural tradition. The sophisticated architectural style of the Jain Monastic caves at Udaygiri and Khandagiri are a story unto themselves. During the 7th to the 13th Century AD, Odisha flourished. Trade and com-merce increased and along with it evolved its art and architecture. The style of Hindu temple construction, so unique to Odisha also developed around this time. Bhubaneswar, the capital of Odisha, is also popularly known as the “Temple City of India”. Being the seat of Tribhubaneswar or ‘ Lord Lingaraj ‘, Bhubaneswar is an important Hindu pilgrimage centre. Hundreds of temples dot the landscape of the Old Town, which once boasted of more than 2000 temples. Bhubaneswar is the place where temple building activities of Odishan style flowered from its very inception to its fullest culmination extending over a period of more than one thousand years. The new Bhubaneswar with its modern buildings and extensive infrastructure perfectly complements its historic surroundings. With facilities to cater to every type of visitor, Bhubaneswar makes an ideal tourist destination.

22 • India Newsletter

State Profile: Kerala


ith foreign influences as disparate as Chinese and Portuguese, Arab and Dutch, Kerala is the spice coast of India. Edged by a thread of unbroken beachline, the state‘s heart is composed of in-tensely green paddy fields and a unique network of rivers and lagoons. Upland Kerala, relatively little visited, is composed of hills thickly wooded with teak and rubber. It is here that Kerala‘s most precious spices are grown in carefully nurtured plantations: carda-mom, pepper and nutmeg. Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum), the state capital, an interna-tional airport, has an exceptionally fine museum set in an amuse-ment park. 16 km away is Kovalam, one of the most popular beaches in the country. Many visitors stay at Kovalam, driving into Thiruvananthapuram for sightseeing trips, rather than the other way round. Sri Padmanabhaswamy temple in Thiruvananthapu-ram, and Padmanabhapuram Palace, a short drive away, are im-portant monuments. Cochin, with a fine natural harbour, has been Kerala‘s center of maritime trade for innumerable centuries. Along the harbour, rows of antediluvian Chinese fishing nets indicate Kerala‘s trade with China, just as buildings along the water‘s edge testify to the erst-while presence of Dutch and Portuguese colonisers. Jewtown, complete with an immaculately preserved synagogue, has a fla-vour all its own, while Tripunathura, at the other end of the city, has many traditional houses with central courtyards. Kerala‘s mul-titude of faiths – Islam, Judaism, and a host of sects of Christianity and Hinduism – all coexist harmoniously in a state that is known for its Marxist inclinations! Kerala‘s traditions of dance forms, which originated from temple worship, can be witnessed at regu-larly held performances. Lecture-demonstrations of the most spec-tacular of these – Kathakali

– are held daily at many centres in Co-chin. Teyyam, at once an act of worship and visual feast; temple festivals complete with caparisoned elephants; Kalaripayata, the indigenous art of self defence; all are a part of Kerala‘s remarkable heritage of performing arts, and can be witnessed at various cen-tres in Cochin and Thiruvananthapuram. A five hour drive from Co-chin leads into thickly forested hills, past rubber

and spice planta-tions, and into southern India‘s tea growing district headquartered at the charmingly old world Munnar. From Kottayam toAlleppey is a world of palm fringed waterways, a route which is covered by motor launch. Elderly sailboats, long barges transporting tons of coconuts and tiny skiffs used to transport children to school are common sights on these backwaters.

India Newsletter • 23

Embassy of India, Vienna

24 • India Newsletter

INDIAN MOVIE EVENING AT THE EMBASSY Due to limited capacity, seats will be given on a first come, first served basis. Therefore, you are highly encouraged to reserve your seats online at, via email under marketingofficer@

Maqbool - A modern adaption of William Shakespeare’s Macbeth ■■ Synopsis: Macbeth meets the Godfather in present-day Bombay. Jahangir Khan, called “Abbaji” as a title of respect, is a powerful and influential Mumbai (the Indian name for Bombay)-based gangster involved in several criminal activities. Through the cooperation of two prophesying policemen (and through them, connections to national politicians), he has never been arrested, and carries on, knowing that money and bribes will assist him throughout his life. Things turn ugly when his mistress, Nimmi, starts to have an affair with one of his men, Maqbool, who has aspirations of succeeding Abbaji one day. Things come to a boil, Maqbool kills Abbaji, and his dreams come true when he takes over as the new underworld leader, without realizing that he, too, has become a target of another faction of Abbaji’s men. ■■ Genre: Crime/Drama ■■ Directed by: Vishal Bhardwaj ■■ Starring: Irrfan Khan, Tabu, Pankaj Kapur ■■ Released: 2003 ■■ Duration: 132 Minutes ■■ Language: Hindi, Urdu ■■ Subtitles: German ■■ Image Quality: Standard

Showtime March 27th, 17:30 Indian Embassy Business Centre (1st Floor, Kärntner Ring 2, 1010 Vienna) India Newsletter • 25

Embassy of India, Vienna


26 • India Newsletter

Getanzte Märchen aus Indien Kaveri Sageder, Kathakmeisterin aus Puna/Indien tanzt – „erzählt-tanzt“ - die Handlungen Martha Jarolim, Schauspielerin und Künstlerin aus Oberösterreich liest die Geschichten. Datum: Mittwoch, 18 März 2015, EINLASS: 18.00, Beginn: 18.30 Echter indischer Chai und Mango Lassi sind auch im Programm! Eintritt: Erwchesene 15 €, Kinder - frei Wo: 1010 Ringstrassen Galerien Im Kunstraum Mag. Hubert Thurnhofer


India Newsletter • 27

Embassy of India, Vienna

NOTICE BOARD EMBASSY’S LIBRARY ■■ The EMBASSY’S library is opened DAILY from 10am to 1pm without appointment. ■■ For a complete list of books available in our library, visit our website ■■ For scheduling an appointment outside the opening hours, please contact the information assistant under or 01 505 8666 33

BUSINESS CENTRE ■■ The EMBASSY’S Business Centre is opened DAILY from 10am to 1pm. ■■ For scheduling an appointment outside the opening hours, please contact the commercial wing under the contacts given below. ■■ Marketing Officer: or 01 505 8666 30 ■■ Marketing Assistant: or 01 505 8666 31

STUDENTS WELFARE OFFICER ■■ Mr. Pawan T. Badhe, Third Secretary in this Embassy has been designated as Officer to look after welfare of Indian Students in Austria and Montenegro. ■■ His contact details are: 0043 1 505 866 15 and

MINISTRY OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS GOES MOBILE Now you can... ■■ Avail services : passport, visa, consular assistance ■■ Ask your Minister : on the go, anytime, anywhere ■■ Follow your PM : on his visits abroad ■■ Find the nearest Indian Mission/Post : for emergency consular assistance ■■ Be informed : about India’s Foreign Relations on the move and form your own opinions ■■ Know more : about how to undertake Kailash Manasarovar Yatra and Haj Pilgrimage ■■ Download and watch : pictures & documentaries on India ■■ Play and Personalize : what you need, when you need ■■ Share and contribute : your views, pics & suggestions All this & much more on your smartphone Ministry of External Affairs proudly presents “MEAIndia” – an integrated smart app for mobile and other hand held devices ‘MEAIndia’ is now available for download on App Store and Google Play Store..

FACEBOOK ■■ Our Facebook page targets the India-Austria community and covers subjects such as Business, Culture, Embassy News, India-related events and programmes in Austria, and much more. ■■ We have reached the 6000 followers mark! ■■ ‘Like’ our facebook page and be the first to know! 28 • India Newsletter

India newsletter 03 2015  
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