INDIA NEWSLETTER Indian Embassy, Vienna
Published by the Embassy of India, Vienna Year 6 • Issue 72 • December 2016
MAKE IN INDIA ■■STORY SO FAR
India Newsletter • 1
Indian Embassy, Vienna
The Digital India programme is a flagship programme of the Government of India with a vision to transform India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy Digital Infrastructure as a Core Utility to Every Citizen
Governance and Services on Demand
Digital Empowerment of Citizens
www.digitalindia.gov.in 2 â€˘ India Newsletter
Indian Embassy, Vienna
The Government of India 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
www.makeinindia.com India Newsletter • 3
Indian Embassy, Vienna
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced the ‘Startup India, Standup India’ initiative in his Independence Day address last year. Last January 16th, PM Modi unveiled the action plan for startups in the country. He announced a self-certification scheme in respect of nine labour and environment laws and said there will be no inspection during the first three years of launch of the venture. Addressing the first conference of start-up entrepreneurs, Modi announced an action plan to boost such ventures which are seen as key to employment generation and wealth creation. Around 40 top CEOs and startup founders and investors from Silicon Valley attended the event. Here are the top takeaways from the prime minister’s speech.
■■ 1. Compliance regime based on self certification The objective of compliance regime based on self certification is to reduce the regulatory burden on startups. This self-certification will apply to laws like payment of gratuity, contract labour, employees provident fund, water and air pollution acts. ■■ 2. Startup India hub A startup India hub will be created as a single point of contact for the entire startup ecosystem to enable knowledge exchange and access to funding. ■■ 3. Simplifying the startup process A startup will be to able to set up by just filling up a short form through a mobile app and online portal. A mobile app will be launched on April 1 through which startups can be registered in a day. There will also be 4 • India Newsletter
a portal for clearances, approvals and registrations
■■ 4. Patent protection The government is also working on a legal support for fast-tracking patent examination at lower costs. It will promote awareness and adoption of Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) by startups and help them protect and commercialise IPRs. ■■ 5. Funds of funds with a corpus of Rs 10,000 crore In order to provide funding support to startups, the government will set up a fund with an initial corpus of Rs 2,500 crore and a total corpus of Rs 10,000 crore over four years. The fund would be managed by private professionals drawn from the industry while LIC will be a co-investor in the fund. The credit guarantee fund for start-ups would help flow of venture debt from the banking system to start-ups by standing guarantee against risks. ■■ 6. Credit Guarantee Fund A National Credit Guarantee Trust Company is being envisaged with a budgetary allocation of Rs 500 crore per year for the next four years. ■■ 7. Exemption from Capital Gains Tax Currently, investments by venture capital funds in startups are exempt from this law. Now, the same is being extended to investments made by incubators in startups. ■■ 8. Tax exemption for startups Income tax exemption to startups announced for three years ■■ 9. Tax exemption on investments above Fair Market Value
■■ 10. Startup fests Innovation core programs for students in 5 lakh schools. There will also be an annual incubator grand challenge to create world class incubators ■■ 11. Launch of Atal Innovation Mission Atal Innovation Mission started to give an impetus to innovation and encourage the talent among the people ■■ 12. Setting up of 35 new incubators in institutions PPP model being considered for 35 new incubators, 31 innovation centres at national institutes ■■ 13. Setting up of 7 new research parks Government shall set up seven new research parks - six in IITs, one in IISc with an initial investment of Rs 100 crore each. ■■ 14. Promote entrepreneurship in biotechnology Five new bio clusters, 50 new bio incubators, 150 technology transfer offices and 20 bio connect offices will be established. ■■ 15. Innovation focused programmes for students There will be innovation core programs for students in 5 lakh schools. ■■ 16. Panel of facilitators to provide legal support and assist in filing of patent application ■■ 17. 80 per cent rebate on filing patent applications by startups ■■ 18. Relaxed norms of public procurement for startups ■■ 19. Faster exits for startups
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INDIAN DIASPORA & INDIAN STUDENTS ABROAD MADAD (‘MEA’ in Aid of Diaspora in Distress) - a new Consular Services Management System from the Government of India to the Indian Diaspora The Government of India has launched an online portal: MADAD (‘MEA’ in Aid of Diaspora in Distress), a Consular Grievances Monitoring System. Consular grievances regarding compensation, court
cases, domestic helps, imprisonment abroad, transportation of mortal remains, repatriation, salary dues, tracing the whereabouts can be lodged under this portal. Grievances relating to visa and passport, travel documents, attestation of documents will not be entertained in this portal. To register and to monitor the status of your grievances please visit the MADAD portal under madad.gov.in Please register as MADAD user if
you have any grievance related to consular s e r v i c e s o f f e r e d by Indian Missions/Posts abroad or are an Indian student studying/planning to study abroad. MADAD enables online logging and tracking of grievances, and submission of course/contact details of students.
India Newsletter • 5
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India’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 7.3 per cent year-on-year to Rs 29.63 trillion (US$ 432.4 billion) in July-September 2016 quarter, led by healthy growth in agriculture and construction, according to data from the Central Statistics Office (CSO).
Morgan Stanley has increased its exposure to India by 250 basis points (bps), thereby making India the largest overweight in its 27-nation Asia-Pacific excluding Japan/ emerging market portfolio, owing to better equity valuations, bottoming of the growth cycle, and higher correlations with world equities.
The Ministry of Finance has launched a campaign to open bank accounts for all the unbanked workers in the organised and unorganised sectors by November 30, 2016, in order to facilitate financial inclusion and timely payment of wages.
The Ministry of Labour and Employment has successfully opened around 915,431 bank accounts since November 26, 2016, for workers especially in the unorganised sector, as part 6 • India Newsletter
of its campaign to promote and ensure cashless transfer of wages to workers.
network), owing to less extensive investment in its legacy infrastructure.
The Government of India’s decision to expand the scope of e-tourist visas, and include short term medical needs, will likely give a fillip to the medical tourism sector in the country.
The Government of India plans to work on increasing India’s weight in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index, in order to boost foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) inflow into the economy, as most large passive global funds apportion money to emerging markets depending on the index weight of key global indices such as the MSCI EM or the FTSE Emerging Markets Index.
The Indian luxury market is expected to grow at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25 per cent to US$ 18.5 billion in 2016.
Several European countries, including Greece, Netherlands, Georgia and Sweden, have shown interest in signing an open sky agreement with India, following the change of rules in India’s National Civil Aviation Policy (NCAP), which is expected to significantly enhance the country’s international connectivity.
Intel Corp, has stated that India can quickly accelerate to 5G (fifth-generation mobile
Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi stated that Rs 5 lakh crore (US$ 73.4 billion) has been deposited so far in banks since the demonetisation decision, which will help banks lower interest rates, thereby helping to revive economic activity in the country.
General Electric Co., views India as becoming a better place for doing business, owing to government’s focus on infrastructure, Goods and Services Tax (GST) reform, and improving transparency.
India has become an Associate Member State of the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN), which will increase the collaboration between India and CERN’s scientific and technological endeavours, and will increase participation of Indian physicists, software engineers and electronics hardware in global experiments.
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EVENTS REPORT Forum “India: Back to Business”
The event was opened with an optimistic speech by the President of the WKO, Dr. Christoph Leitl,
followed by an equality forwardlooking speech by Ambassador of India to Austria, H.E. Rajiva Misra. The Embassy of India (Vienna) set up an “India Stall” at the event, where a wide collection of informative material on business in India was being distributed. The most recent publication issued by the Mission entitled “Indian Economy and Investment Opportunities – A Stateby-State Snapshot” was the highest on demand. The commercial wing of the Embassy also took the opportunity to network and hold B2B talks with
Austrian companies interested in doing business with India. The day event counted with presentations and panels by several leaders in the India-Austria business circle, all of which shared very encouraging statements about the emerging huge business opportunities in India. The overall sentiment was that Austrian companies are not only invited but are also a very good match to take part in all initiatives of entering into mutually beneficial businesses with India. Some impressions of the event:
Celebration of the
Buddhist Studies of the University
the winners of the Essay Competition
Constitution Day on
of Vienna. The talk was followed
were also awarded prizes during the
by a Q&A session. The Embassy
celebrations on 25th November.
also screened the 1st episode of
The celebration on the occasion
Members from Indian community
the Rajya Sabha TV Documetnary
of the Constitution Day was held
and local Austrians were present at
in Vienna on 25th November. The
the event in good number.
the formation of the Constituent
celebrations consisted of a talk on
“The Indian Constitution and the
being faced by the makers of the
Constituent Assembly Debates” by
Constitution of India. The Embassy
Prof. Dr. Martin Gaenszle, an expert
also organised an essay competition
on Cultural and Intellectual History
for school students on the topic
of Modern South Asia, from the
of “Salient Features of the Indian
Institute of South Asian Tibetan and
Constitution”. The participants and
As part of the “Going International” trade promotion initiative of the Department of Foreign Trade of the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber (WKO) and the Ministry of Economy, the WKO together with the Austrian Trade Commission in Delhi, organized the Forum “India: Back to Business” in Vienna on 08th November 2016.
India Newsletter • 7
Indian Embassy, Vienna
IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT FOR AUSTRIAN CITIZENS e-Tourist Visa (e-TV) for Austrian citizens The Government of India has extended e-Tourist Visa (e-TV) scheme to the citizens of Austria w.e.f. 26th February 2016. Under e-Tourist Visa scheme, citizens of Austria may now apply online (https:// indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa. html) four days in advance to obtain the Electronic Travel Authorisation for travelling to India.This facility is in addition to the existing Visa services. This facility is also available to the citizens of Montenegro as well.Queries related to e-TV; for any assistance call 24x7 Visa support centre at +91-11-24300666 or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
INDIA-AUSTRIA NEWS ARTICLES Jaguar I-Pace to be built by Magna Steyr Jaguar, a British brand owned by an Indian company, will use a Canadianowned contract manufacturer to build full-electric crossovers in Austria. The I-Pace will be built by contract manufacturer Magna Steyr’s factory in Austria, Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralf Speth told Automotive News Europe. JLR signed a contract to build vehicles at Magna’s Graz plant in July 2015 but at that time the company didn’t specify which models would be produced there. Automotive News sibling publication Automobilwoche reported then that Magna would manufacture an electric vehicle and the new Land Rover Discovery for JLR. Speth confirmed that the I-Pace would be one of two vehicles that Magna builds for JLR. He declined to confirm whether the second model would also be an EV or whether it 8 • India Newsletter
would be a Land Rover. Construction has begun on an extension to Magna’s factory in Graz to prepare for output of two JLR models. IHS Automotive foresees production of about 13,000 I-Pace models with Magna in 2019, the EV’s first full year on the market. Jaguar previewed the I-Pace at this month’s Los Angeles Auto Show. The production version will go on
sale globally in the second half of 2018, providing the U.K. brand with a rival to EVs planned by German competitors Audi and MercedesBenz. Magna currently builds the Mercedes G class for Daimler and the Mini Countryman for BMW Group in Austria. Output of the Countryman will end this year and be replaced by production of the BMW 5 series.
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NEWS ARTICLES Isro picks private consortium to build two satellites In a step towards entrusting the private sector with satellite making, Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) issued a contract to a consortium of six companies to manufacture two remote-sensing satellites. Isro will pay an undisclosed amount to the consortium for building these satellites to its specifications in the next 18 months, said a senior official with the space agency. The companies selected are Alpha Design Technologies, New Tech Solutions, Aidin Technologies, Avantel Systems, DCX Cable Assemblies, Vinyas Innovative Technologies. Alpha, which has already been working with some defence projects and aerospace projects, will be the lead partner of the consortium. This is part of Isro’s effort to hand over the works of making complete standard satellites for future use. So far, firms such as Avasara Technologies, Larsen & Toubro and Godrej have supplied components and systems for the satellites Isro builds to hurl into space. Isro Satellite Centre’s director M Annadurai said the total period given to them to build the two satellites was around 18 months. He added that Isro would shortly come out with similar assignments for some more satellites. “Now we have got a good number of industries that have an interest in the segment. The people who have gone through this process will have one more chance to express their interest for the next project, but that will be a different satellite,” he said. For the first two satellites, the final rundown to the selection of consortium had 17 companies participating. The work assigned to the consortium
includes assembly of the electrical and mechanical hardware, testing, and handing over the satellite for launch. The basic software both onboard and the ground is already available, which could be used by the consortium for testing of the satellite, to get the data out, etc. To start with, the private players will be using Isro infrastructure, while the ownership will remain with the space agency. Annadurai said the decision to outsource the manufacturing of satellites was taken after due deliberation. It will free Isro scientists for other purposes such as research & development. Involving the private sector will also result in the emergence of a set of industries that could work on the global space market, to take up orders from abroad and make satellites that are of high quality, a model the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has developed in the US. Once Isro standardises a satellite, it will hand over the process to the industry, which they can replicate to make more satellites. Isro will be paying the consortium to do the first two satellites to start with. Later, there is a possibility that it can get orders from global players to make satellites. The consortium will be working under Isro’s supervision, on the space agency’s premises, and there will be adequate measures to ensure security. The raw material for these two satellites will be sourced and provided by Isro.
We’ve adopted ‘born in France, made in India’ approach: Jean-Michel Casse, AccorHotels India AccorHotel announced that it has reached its 45 hotels and resorts milestone network growth across India. The recent openings of Hotel Formule1 in Nashik and Chennai has led to the brand operating in 18 cities with the portfolio ranging from
luxury and midscale to in-demand economy brand segments, Accor said. It added that ten of AccorHotels globally acclaimed brands have a presence in India, with ibis Styles making its debut earlier in 2016 with the opening of a 197-rooms hotel in Goa. The company said it will continue to accelerate its pipeline for 2017 which will see an additional ten hotels bringing its network growth to over 55 properties. The group now has an 8,000 room inventory across its ten brands, which include Fairmont, Sofitel, Pullman, Swissôtel, Grand Mercure, Novotel, Mercure, ibis, ibis Styles and Formule1. AccorHotels said its growth strategy in India is led by its focus on the midscale segment with the Novotel brand which celebrated its tenth-year anniversary presence in India this year and the popular indemand economy brand, ibis. There are currently 28 hotels operating under the Novotel and Ibis brands across various key cities in India. Jean-Michel Cassé, Senior Vice President, Operations, AccorHotels India said, “Our strong network growth of 45 hotels and resorts across India is a milestone achievement with the quest to deepen our roots in the country. We have adopted the born in France made in India approach by growing more AccorHotels properties across the country with a projected growth of over 10,000 rooms across India in 2017 with a presence in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities.” This year, AccorHotels completed a decade of operations in the country. Its openings in 2016 include ibis Chennai City Centre, Mercure Hyderabad KCP, Grand Mercure Mysuru, The Bheemili Resort managed by AccorHotels, ibis Hyderabad HITEC City, ibis Styles Goa Calangute, Hotel Formule1 Nashik and Hotel Formule1 Chennai. The acquisition of FRHI earlier this year resulted in the addition of two brands - Fairmont Jaipur and India Newsletter • 9
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Swissôtel Kolkata, to the AccorHotels growing portfolio. “As we move forward, densification remains a major growth strategy for AccorHotels in India, with the intent to be a leader in the markets we operate in. In 2016, we emerged as the largest hotel operator in major cities such as Hyderabad and Goa. We will continue to increase our growth presence across major cities in 2017.” Jean-Michel Cassé added.
Govt and Intel join hands for developing solutions for real-time air and river water quality monitoring Indian government and the US multinational technology company, Intel, joined hands for development of state-of-art solutions for realtime air and river water quality monitoring. Aim of this initiative of the department of science and technology (DST) and the Intel is to develop key technologies for sensing, communication and analysis of large-scale data collected from autonomous networks. This will be followed by integration and deployment for water and air quality monitoring in real-time. Under the joint initiative, proposals from academic and research institutions are invited on developing online ‘Water and Air Quality Monitoring’ (WAQM) systems. The selected submissions will be provided grant-in-aid support. An amount of Rs 33 crore has been set aside for the project. Elaborating on the DST-Intel collaboration, minister of state for science and technology YS Chowdary said, “I hope global experience will come in handy to tackle local challenges”. The programme will be administered by the Indo-US Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF). This will eventually lead to development and deployment of low-cost, low-power, autonomous wireless sensor networks to provide a finegrained view of several critical water and air quality metrics over large 10 • India Newsletter
geographic areas (cities, rivers and watersheds). The minister said this programme was very critical for the restoration, conservation and preservation of the environment. “Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, top priority is being given to R & D in science and technology to come out with appropriate solutions to challenges facing the nation”, he said. These online sensor networks for river water and air quality monitoring will provide the pre-remedial quality status. It is expected that the real time data will significantly strengthen and complement the missions of national priority like Namami Gange Programme and others by serving as critical data feeders for pre and post treatment analysis. “Such networks may also eventually replace the current paradigm of environmental quality management via localized stations. The development of such an Internet of Things (IoT)-based solution will require innovations in sensor technology for miniaturized platforms for continuous, alwaysconnected multi-modal sensing, ultra-low power radios for efficient communication and energy harvesting technologies to enable very long or perpetual operation of sensor nodes”, said a statement of the ministry of science and technology. It said, “These key blocks will need to be woven together by a data analytics framework that spans edge devices, gateways and cloud-based analytics, to enable inferencing and sense-making in a low-latency manner”.
Cabinet approves MoU between India and the UK to support Ease of Doing Business in India The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its ex-post facto approval to the MoU between India and United Kingdom (UK) to support Ease of Doing Business in India. The MoU was signed earlier this month.
The MoU shall enable exchange of officials from both the Governments to facilitate sharing of best practises, offering technical assistance and enhanced implementation of reforms. The collaboration shall also cover State Governments in its ambit. The UK government has shown interest to offer expertise in the following areas: ■■ Support to small businesses and start ups ■■ Starting business and registration ■■ Paying taxes and tax administration ■■ Insolvency ■■ Construction permits ■■ Getting electricity ■■ Risk based framework for inspection and regulatory regimes ■■ Trading across the borders ■■ Competition economics ■■ Getting credit ■■ Drafting of laws and regulations ■■ Reducing stock and flow of regulation ■■ Impact assessment of regulations Currently, India is ranked 130th out of 190 economies (as per Doing Business Report, 2017). The UK Government has achieved phenomenal improvement in Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) rankings in recent years. The beneficiaries include the officials from Central Government Ministries / Departments and State Governments through sharing of best practises, capacity building etc. Each side shall bear the cost of travel and logistics for its officials as well as for co-hosting trainings/ seminar/ conferences. The MoU shall facilitate various agencies of the UK government to offer professional courses on better regulation drafting for officials, capacity-building of frontline inspectors, sharing of best practises, etc. The collaboration is expected to expedite adoption of innovative practises by the Government of India, State Governments and their agencies leading to easing of regulatory environment in the country and fostering of conducive business climate in India.
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India and Israel to step-up Science and Technology Cooperation A high level Israeli delegation led by Minister for Science, Technology and Space Mr.Ofir Akunis, including three members of Israeli parliament met Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Science, Technology and Earth Sciences. The visit of the Israeli S&T and Space Minister to India follows the visit of the President of Israel to India last month. In the meeting between the two Minister’s both sides agreed to give boost to the bilateral cooperation in science and technologyunder the aegis of the S&T Agreement concluded between India and Israel in 1993. Next year will mark 25 years of diplomatic relationship between the two countries. Welcoming the delegation, Dr. Harsh Vardhan remarked that India values its science and technology cooperation with Israel which is a leading innovative nation of the world. He further added that we would like to identify new opportunities and mechanisms to expand and upscale our cooperation agenda by creating a value based relationship which can contribute to the 21st century knowledge economy. India and Israel together have implemented a large number of cutting edge research projects in applied areas covering Agricultural and Medical Biotechnology; Human Genomics; Advanced Materials & Nanotechnology; Imaging Sensor & Robotics; Solar Energy; Communication & Information Technology; and Lasers & Electro-optics. This has led to new knowledge creation through high impact publications in peer reviewed international journals. As a follow-up to the India-Israel Joint S&T Committee meeting which was held in Jerusalem earlier this year, the two Ministers agreed to step up the collaboration in the next two years by providing U.S. dollar 1 million from each side to support new R&D projects in the cutting
edge areas of ‘Big Data Analytics in Health Care’ and ‘Security in Cyber Space’. The joint projects will be awarded to the partnering academic and R&D laboratories from the two countries during the next year. As a part of these projects, student exchanges will be encouraged in order to connect the next generation and sustain the pipeline of future collaboration. In recognition of the importance of promoting women in science it was agreed to consider special initiatives to support women in science and technology through new joint programs in this area. Further, in order to engage best and bright researchers from India and Israel who can provide the future excitement in the science and technology relationship, it was suggested to hold ‘Frontiers of Science and Engineering Symposium’ targeted to the next generation future leaders, cutting across disciplinary and institutional boundaries. The potential avenues and mechanism for collaboration particularly leading to establishment of ‘Networked Research Centers’ between the academic and R&D institutions from the two countries was also mooted. The virtual networked centre mechanism will help to leverage collaborative advantage by connecting the best performing research groups. To this effect, a joint declaration of intent was signed by the two Ministers for further follow-up. The science and technology relationship between India and Israel has been unique in also promoting industrial R&D cooperation through academiaindustry participation which has the potential to create new intellectual property, prototypes and products. This collaborative program is particularly significant in context to the Make in India and other national missions of the Indian government. The international industrial R&D cooperation of Department of Science & Technology (DST) with MATIMOP, the Israeli Industry
Center for R&D, is administered through the Global Innovation and Technology Alliance (GITA) platform of Confederation of Indian Industry(CII). Dr. Harsh Vardhan remarked that by connecting the academic institutions and industries from both countries we will not only stimulate new knowledge creation but also foster innovation and technoentrepreneurship. Both countries should continue their commitment to further strengthen this strand of our bilateral S&T cooperation which is of mutual relevance and in line with our national priority.
Mahindra to purchase Netherlands’ OFD Holding for €5 million Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd, through its unit Mahindra Agri Solutions Ltd (MASL), has agreed to acquire a stake of up to 60% in the Netherlandsbased fruit distribution company OFD Holding BV for around €5 million (approximately Rs36 crore), it said in a statement. The group has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the stake. “…we have entered into a partnership with OFD Holding BV, which takes us closer to achieving our vision of being a significant player in grapes. We have been working with farmers in India for a long time and this association will bring a lot of synergy by giving access to new markets to our farmers,” MASL managing director and CEO Ashok Sharma said. Mahindra and OFD already have a supplier-customer relationship which shall be further strengthened to address market needs. The acquisition will provide access to large sourcing base to both the companies across the globe i.e India, South American countries and South Africa as well as a distribution base in Europe and China. The deal is expected to be completed by the end of January 2017. Vikram Puri, executive vice president of Mahindra Agri Solutions said, “Our investment into OFD Holding BV India Newsletter • 11
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gives us a presence in the European and Chinese markets, allowing us to reach new customers and strengthen our relationship with existing customers.” OFD Holding is a fruit import and distribution company operating through its subsidiaries in Europe and China on the market side and South America on the sourcing side. “India is an increasingly important supplier of grapes to our markets and Mahindra is one of the largest exporters, which is giving us access to a growing volume of excellent quality grapes. We are looking forward to intensifying our cooperation with the Mahindra team and the growers, to jointly develop innovations, new markets and customers,” said Corne van de Klundert, MD of OFD Holding BV & Origin Fruit Direct BV.
Revised Indian e-visa policy to benefit medical tourism industry The Government of India’s policy to expand the scope of e-tourist visas, and include short term medical needs, is expected to give a fillip to the medical tourism sector in the country. “This is indeed a welcome move. Medical tourism is an inherent strength of our country and our healthcare system. The country is at the unique cusp of cost effectiveness with cutting edge expertise. India attracts over a million patients every year from over 121 countries and we have the most inflow from the Middle East, Africa and South Asia. But this is the tip of the iceberg; India can serve millions more who are keen to be treated in our nation,” said Dr K Hari Prasad, president hospitals division, Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Ltd, in a statement. At present India’s medical tourism is estimated at about $ 3 billion, which is a miniscule share as compared to the global market pegged at $ 17 billion. Progressive changes in policies coupled with regulatory changes will ensure easy travel and will bring down this disparity between Indian and global 12 • India Newsletter
medical value travel market. This will help companies in the Indian healthcare industry to capitalise on the opportunity that the sector offers. “India which has already been attracting patients for care, will emerge as a destination of choice due to more liberal e-visa policy. The step will boost our commitment to make India the ‘Healthcare destination for all’,” added Dr Hari Prasad. Estimates show that medical procedures in India allows patient to save about 65-90 percent as compared to cost of certain procedures in the US. For instance, a heart bypass surgery, which costs about $130,000 in the US, will cost the patient just about $7,000 in India. He stated, “Over the years we have seen many patients travel to India for medical treatment and majority of travellers choose India for solid organ transplants (liver, kidney, pancreas, heart, lung, and intestine), treatment and management of cancer and cardiovascular diseases, excellence in orthopaedics (joint and spine; sports medicine) and neurosurgery. Reproductive (fertility, IVF, women’s health) treatment, weight loss (LAP-BAND, gastric bypass) surgeries along cosmetic surgery and dentistry (general, restorative, and cosmetic) have also started attracting patients recently. With government’s positive outlook to ease certain policies, India will soon shine as a desired destination for excellent medical care.”
Govt aims to up India’s weight on global index The government is looking at ways to boost India’s weight in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index. It has appointed a team of officials from the finance ministry, the Reserve Bank and the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) to achieve this, said sources. India’s weight in the index has risen 180 basis points to 8.1 per cent, from 6.3 per cent only four years earlier. However, in the past month,
it slid from an earlier high of 8.7 per cent, after demonetisation and the resulting turmoil, said market players. “A case is being prepared to ensure India gets a higher share in the index,” said a person familiar with the matter. An increase in weight will lead to a commensurate rise in flow from foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) since most large passive global funds apportion money to emerging markets depending on the index weight of key global indices such as the MSCI EM or the FTSE Emerging Markets Index. The MSCI EM index consists of 23 countries, representing a tenth of world market capitalisation. It covers about 85 per cent of the free float-adjusted market capitalisation in each of these countries. In the past, foreign brokerages such as CLSA have said India deserved a higher share of weight in the MSCI EM. It figures below South Korea and Taiwan in the index, although its total market capitalisation is higher than these two. High promoter holding is the biggest hurdle in raising India’s weight, say experts. “It’s a legacy issue,” said Rakesh Arora, partner, Go India Advisors and former research head of Macquarie Capital Securities (India). “Most of the businesses are driven by individual promoters and they tend to hold majority stake, limiting the free float market capitalisation, a key criterion for assigning the MSCI weight.” FPIs, one of the largest drivers of Indian equities, had invested about $410 billion in Indian shares, representing 27 per cent ownership, as of September. Controlling stake holders, or promoters, owned 47.4 per cent of the shares. “Though India is much more important than the MSCI weight suggests, our free-float capitalisation is much lower than other emerging markets,” said U R Bhat, managing director, Dalton Capital Advisors (India). “In several cases, Indian firms have not increased the FII (foreign institutional investor)holding above
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the threshold of 24 per cent, which needs a special resolution by the shareholders.” Promoters will dilute their stake only when the next stage of private sector investment picks up, say experts. “They will raise money from the market when they see a growth opportunity, which will result in some dilution,” said Bhat. The government’s stake sale in stateowned firms, either as strategic divestment or to meet Sebi’s minimum public shareholding (MPS) rule of promoter holding below 75 per cent, can help increase free float market capitalisation. A 10 per cent stake sale in Coal India, for instance, will free $2.5 billion in the free-float market cap. The government and its arms would need to sell shares worth at least Rs 1.26 lakh crore in listed state-owned entities in eight months to comply with the MPS norm. Year-to-date, FPIs put $4.2 billion in Indian shares, higher than in Indonesia ($1.5 bn), Thailand ($2.2 bn) and Brazil ($4.1 bn).
Apple plans to set up a distribution centre in India Apple will move to a dedicated distribution centre for its products in India for the first time, consolidating its logistics operations to ensure common pricing for offline and online sales and acquiring greater control over the supply chain. Apple’s global logistics partner DB Schenker will own and operate the centre, which will come up at Bhiwandi near Mumbai, two senior industry officials said. DB Schenker, one of Europe’s largest logistics companies, has signed an agreement to run the Indian centre, which will help to ensure that Apple products are rarely sold out at the retail level, as it happened after the launch of the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus in October. Currently, iPhones, iPads and Mac computers are brought into India through Chennai, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chandigarh, New Delhi and Hyderabad – where value-added
tax rates vary – and transferred to distributors from the airport itself. Online sellers often source the devices from low-VAT markets, gaining a price advantage over their offline rivals. “The distribution centre will allow Apple to stock its products adequately, will ease operations and streamline its logistics and supply chains. It will also help in maintaining uniform price for its products, which will become much easier under the Goods and Services Tax regime,” said one of the executives. Email queries sent to Apple and DB Schenker seeking comment did not elicit any immediate response. Apple is expanding in India, widening distribution to the smaller cities and working with application developers. The company was the country’s second-largest smartphone maker by revenue in 2015-16, pipping local rival Micromax Informatics after sales increased 54% to Rs 9,997 crore. One industry executive said the distribution centre will help Apple provide hardware such as Mac computers tailored to the needs of business customers. “Earlier, this flexibility was not there. The company is currently reviewing this and any such effort will be for enterprise clients only,” he said. Apple allows customisation only for consumers who place orders through its online store, which would require retail foreign direct investment approval from the government. Its retail and online store plans are still stuck after the government revised its FDI policy this year.
India bags second spot with 27 varsities entering top 300 India is the second mostrepresented country in the newly expanded Times Higher Education BRICS and Emerging Economies University Rankings, with the Indian Institute of Science becoming the first Indian institute to break into the top 15. In the 2017 list, which ranks universities based on teaching,
research, international outlook and knowledge transfer, the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) is placed 14th, up two spots from a year ago when it debuted in the top 20. This time round, India has 27 universities in the top 300. Last year, 16 Indian universities had made it to the top 200. China continues to dominate with 52 places in the top 300 and six in the top 10. “India is making great strides. Its flagship university, the Indian Institute of Science, breaks into the top 15 for the first time this year, thanks to improved scores for its teaching environment and research influence, while the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay climbs three places to 26th, its highest ever rank, due to improved scores across all of the five pillars underlying the methodology,” said Phil Baty, editor of the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. Baty said India could soon overtake Taiwan as the second mostrepresented country in the top 200 of the table. “Overall, India has 19 universities in the top 200, up from 16 last year, while Taiwan has 21, down from 24,” Baty said. This ranking uses the same 13 indicators as the overall World University Rankings. India has eight institutes in the top 100. Apart from IISc and IIT Bombay, these include IIT Delhi and IIT Kanpur (both ranked 32nd), IIT Madras (35th), IIT Roorkee (joint 62nd), IIT Kharagpur (71st) and Jadavpur University in 99th place. Indian institutes in the 100-200 bracket include IIT Guwahati, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, University of Delhi, Punjab University, Tezpur University, Savitribai Phule Pune University, Aligarh Muslim University, University of Calcutta, Sri Venkateswara University, NIT Rourkela and BITS Pilani. Acharya Nagarjuna University, Amrita University, Osmania University and Andhra University are ranked 201-250, while Amity University, Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, Manipal India Newsletter • 13
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University and Cochin University of Science and Technology bring up the rear in the 251-300 bracket. Baring India and China, the other BRICS nations have not fared well, largely due to increased competition as a result of expansion of the list to rank 300 universities from 41 countries, up from 200 institutions in 35 nations last year..
India the only bright spot in steel production: Moody’s Investors Service Moody’s Investors Service has said India is the only area of strength with rising demand and protectionist measures in place even as it predicted a negative outlook for Asian steelmakers in 2017 as earnings will weaken amid declining production and lower profitability. “We expect EBITDA per tonne to weaken in 2017, given that the robust profitability recorded by steelmakers in mid-2016 is unsustainable against the backdrop of persistent oversupply and the limited ability to pass on rising raw material costs to customers,” says Jiming Zou, a Moody’s Vice President and Senior Analyst. “For 2017, we see India as the only area of strength -- with rising demand and protectionist measures in place,” adds Zou. Moody’s conclusions were contained in its just-released report, “Steel - Asia 2017 Outlook – Weakening Production and Earnings Keep Outlook Negative”. “In India, growing domestic demand, minimum import prices and antidumping duties will support steel producers, but the increase in their steel production will not offset the fall in regional production,” the report said. The country only accounts for only about 8% of Asian steel production. Moody’s expects Asian steel production volumes to fall in 2017 because demand from China -which accounts for about three quarters of Asian steel production -- will contract, while rising trade barriers will constrain exports from Asia. 14 • India Newsletter
One of the main drivers for declining demand in China is the forecast that property sales volumes will decline moderately following the tightening of regulatory measures in September and October 2016. In this context, continued infrastructure investments are insufficient to avert a decline in China’s demand, and its manufacturing activities remain vulnerable to slowing GDP growth and are therefore unlikely to boost steel demand. With Japan, Korea and Taiwan, which export around 40%-50% of their steel output, increasing trade frictions will curb their steel exports and production, Moody’s said.
India becomes Morgan Stanley’s biggest overweight India has become Morgan Stanley’s biggest overweight in the AsiaPacific, excluding Japan/emerging market portfolio. The brokerage has increased India weightage by 50 basis points to 250 bps in its 27-nation portfolio for the region after the domestic markets fell as much as 10 per cent in dollar terms since November 8 owing to demonetisation. “The current low return environment that India seemed to be trapped in may get a breather in 2017 thanks to better equity valuations, the bottoming of the growth cycle (disrupted temporarily by the recent de-monetisation) and higher correlations with world equities on which we are more constructive,” Morgan Stanley said in a note. Besides India, China, Taiwan, Peru, Chile and Czech Republic are some of the other overweights for Morgan Stanley. Australia, South Africa, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and Qatar are the underweight markets. Morgan Stanley has reduced South Korea to equalweight from overweight and upgraded China from equalweight to overweight. Overweight or underweight means high or low weight than
the benchmark index. Equalweight means similar weight as in the benchmark index. “Overall, we think that emerging markets face significant headwinds in 2017 and that the chances that a new secular bull market for the asset class began in 2016 are now lower than before,” the brokerage said in a note.
European countries make a beeline for India’s open skies Requests have started pouring in from various European countries for having an open sky agreement with India after the government announced a change of rules in the National Civil Aviation Policy (NCAP). An open sky agreement between two nations allows carriers from respective countries to operate any number of flights to any city in that country. Under the NCAP, India has decided to enter into open skies agreement with SAARC countries and with those beyond 5,000-km radius from Delhi. However, the aviation ministry has restricted the number of stations that a foreign airline can operate in, under this agreement. “The first request came from Greece, with which we have already signed an agreement. We are also hopeful of having similar agreements with Netherlands and Sweden for which talks have been held. We have also received a request for open skies from Georgia,” said a senior aviation ministry official. Under the agreement with Greece, while Indian carriers can operate any number of flights to any destination in that country, airlines from that country will be allowed to fly to six Indian cities. Having an open skies agreement with countries beyond 5000 km radius, a brainchild of aviation secretary RN Choubey, should help significantly enhance India’s international connectivity, say experts. “There is a huge Indian diaspora in the West. Indian carriers have
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limited international operations and other than Air India and Jet Airways none operates long haul flights. Removing restrictions on flights from these countries to India will enhance connectivity,” said an expert. The aviation ministry has through the external affairs ministry written to all countries with which India has bilateral air services agreement informing them about the open skies policy. “Those countries which are beyond 5000 kms are free to come and renegotiate the air services agreement with us,” said a ministry official.
88% of households in India have a mobile phone When the results of the 2011 census were published, one stark finding stood out: more households had mobile phones than toilets in India. Fifty-three per cent of households had a mobile phone, while only 47% had a toilet within their homes in that year, the census statistics showed. Five years later, the gap between the two seems to have widened as the march of telecom connectivity has outpaced the march of water connectivity in the country. While the proportion of households with toilets has moved up, the proportion of those with mobile phones has grown even more sharply, according to fresh data from a nationally representative household survey. Eighty-eight per cent of households in India today have a mobile phone, according to the ‘Household Survey on India’s Citizen Environment & Consumer Economy’ (ICE 360° survey) conducted in 2016. The same proportion of households have access to electricity, but far fewer households have access to toilets or tap water, the survey shows. Access to tap water is a function of class, the data suggests. So is access to toilets. Apart from poverty, the other key factor behind the widespread prevalence of open defecation seems to be the lack of running water in many households. The data shows that 6% of households
nationally (and 9% of rural India) defecate in the open despite having toilets. Many researchers have drawn attention to this phenomenon, pointing to the role of education and behavioural change in convincing people to use toilets. But the survey seems to suggest that a key reason why people with toilets may still defecate in the open is the lack of running water. Of households that defecate in the open despite having toilets, 63% reported having toilets without running water. Of households without toilets, 92% defecate in the open. The proportion is lower in urban India because a significant chunk of people without toilets have access to community or public toilets. The ICE 360° survey was conducted by the independent not-for-profit organization, People Research on India’s Consumer Economy (PRICE), headed by two of India’s bestknown consumer economy experts, Rama Bijapurkar and Rajesh Shukla. The survey is among the largest consumer economy surveys in the country. The urban sample of the survey is comparable to that of the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) consumer expenditure survey conducted in 2011-12. While the NSSO surveyed 101,651 households of which 41,968 (41.3%) were urban households, the ICE 360° survey covered 61,000 households of which 36,000 (59%) are urban households. The rural sample of the ICE 360° survey is less than half of the NSSO sample. Nonetheless, all the estimates of each region have been derived by adjusting for the respective population of those regions. The ICE 360° survey shows a significant improvement in household amenities such as access to electricity, tap water and even toilets, compared to the 2011 census. The proportion of households with an electricity connection has moved up 20 percentage points to 87.6% over the past five years, the survey suggests. Over the same period, the proportion of households with tap water in their homes has increased
by 26 percentage points to 52.6% in 2016 and the proportion of households with toilets has seen a 16 percentage point change, as per the survey. Even access to liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) connections seems to have risen sharply, with 54.5% households surveyed reporting using LPG as cooking fuel as against 28.5% such households in 2011. Much of the increase seems to be driven by gains in rural India. It needs to be kept in mind that while the 2011 figures were based on a complete census, the 2016 figures are estimates based on a survey and hence need to be interpreted with greater caution. Nonetheless, estimates such as these based on a nationally representative survey usually provide a fair sense of the direction of change even if they under-state or over-state the pace of change because of sampling errors. And the trends seem to suggest a significant improvement in access to household amenities across the country over the past half a decade. It is also worth keeping in mind that much of this change may have preceded the election of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government in May 2014. Data from the baseline ICE 360° survey conducted in 2014 (which had a smaller sample size of 20,195 households, and hence is not strictly comparable) suggests that much of the improvement in access to household amenities may have occurred between 2011 and 2014, rather than post 2014. For instance, 87.3% households reported access to electricity, 60.1% reported access to toilets and 36.5% reported access to tap water in the 2014 survey. Thus, most of the improvements in the 2011-16 period seems to have occurred by 2014. Given that rural India leads most of the gains in access to amenities, this may not be so surprising since the period 201114 saw a significant boost to rural fortunes. While ownership of mobile phones has spiked, access to the Internet has lagged, the latest survey shows. Only 10% of households reported India Newsletter • 15
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having access to Internet, the ICE 360° survey 2016 shows. Like almost everything else, Internet access too is a function of the income class you belong to and the place you stay in. Barely 1% of households in the bottom quintile have access to Internet but 21% in the top quintile do. A notable feature of this survey is that it is representative at the level of economic clusters. Urban India has been divided into four clusters: metros (population more than 5 million), boom towns (2.5 to 5 million), niche cities (1 to 2.5 million) and other urban towns (less than 1 million). Based on a district development index, rural India has been sub-divided into three different
clusters: ‘developed rural’, ‘emerging rural’, and ‘underdeveloped rural’. The first category includes districts such as Bhatinda (Punjab) and Kangra (Himachal Pradesh). The second category includes districts such as Latur (Maharashtra) and Kamrup (Assam), while the last category includes districts such as Kalahandi (Odisha) and Bastar (Chhattisgarh). The survey shows that around a quarter of households living in metros have access to Internet but only 3% in under-developed rural areas have such access. Access to tap water is also deeply uneven. Ninety-five per cent of those living in metros have access to tap water, but only 22% of those in under-
developed rural areas have access to tap water. There is a similar divide when it comes to access to electricity as well, the data suggests. Long power cuts remain a routine feature of life in rural India; people in the metros have fewer and shorter power cuts. Tadit Kundu in Mumbai contributed to this story. This is the fourth of a 16-part data journalism series on how India lives, thinks, earns and spends, based on the results from the ICE 360° survey conducted by the People Research on India’s Consumer Economy (PRICE) in 2016 (www.ice360.in). The next part will look at how India earns.
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MAKE IN INDIA What is Make in India? ■■ Make in India Initiative was launched globally in September, 2014 as a part of the Government of India’s renewed focus on invigorating the country’s manufacturing sector. The Make in India initiative has made a tremendous impact on the investment climate of the country as shown by significant growth of 46% in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) equity inflows and highest ever FDI inflows at US$ 55.5 billion in 201516. After the launch of Make in India initiative, India has emerged as the fastest growing major economy with GDP growth rate above 7.6% in 201516 and projected to grow above 7% till 2020 as per International Monitory Fund (IMF). ■■ In the last two years, the government has drastically improved the business climate of the country, pushing it towards the trajectory for high and sustainable growth. From a call-to-action to becoming a platform for national development, ‘Make in India’ has made its presence felt across the globe.
What has been the journey for Make in India so far? - The Key Milestones ■■ September 2014 ■■ The Department of Industrial Policies and Promotion (DIPP) of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry took up a series of measures to improve the Ease of Doing Business to simplify some of the existing rules. ■■ January 2015 ■■ Spice Group announced an investment of US$ 75.16 million to set up a manufacturing unit for budget smartphones in Uttar Pradesh. ■■ February 2015 ■■ Chinese technology company Huawei made a huge investment of US$ 170 million to set up a new Research and Development (R&D) campus in Bengaluru. The campus, sprawled across an area of 20 acres,
SEPTEMBER 2O14 TO DECEMBER 2O16
can accommodate 5,000 engineers. ■■ March 2015 ■■ Magneti Marelli, Fiat’s component manufacturing arm, started operations for manufacturing of Electronic Fuel Injection (EFI) in a joint venture with leading two-wheeler maker Hero MotoCorp in Manesar. ■■ May 2015 ■■ Hyundai Heavy Industries partnered with Hindustan Shipyard Limited, Visakhapatnam to help build naval ships in India, this collaboration would help India’s shipbuilding industry to leap forward tremendously. ■■ Daimler India Commercial Vehicles Pvt. Ltd. (DICV), a 100% wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler AG, Stuttgart, Germany, announced the inauguration of its new bus manufacturing facility in Oragadam, Tamil Nadu and unveiled its second wave of products – BharatBenz and Mercedes-Benz buses as well as a new range of new BharatBenz highpower engine trucks and BharatBenz heavy-duty tractors. ■■ India moved 13 positions ahead from 65th to 52nd rank in Tourism and Travel Competitive Index as per the World Economic Forum (Davos) Report.
■■ June 2015 ■■ French aircraft manufacturing company LH Aviation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Indian OIS Advanced Technologies (OIS-AT) for manufacturing of tactical drones in India. ■■ India rose to 1st position in the Baseline Profitability Index in 2015. India was ranked at the 6th position in Baseline profitability index in 2014. ■■ July 2015 ■■ In the Global Startup Ecosystem Rankings 2015 Bengaluru moved to #15 in 2015 from #19 in 2012 (this was driven by the second highest growth rate in exit volumes and VC investment among the Top 20). ■■ Mercedes Benz India inaugurated its second manufacturing facility in Chakan , which shall double the plant capacity to 20,000 units per annum. The total investment in the manufacturing facility now stands over US$ 148 million since inception. ■■ August 2015 ■■ Taiwan’s Foxconn, the world’s largest contract electronics manufacturer and a key supplier to Apple Inc., signed a pact with Maharashtra to invest US$ 5 billion over five years in a semiconductor manufacturing facility. India Newsletter • 17
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■■ The electronics manufacturing sector received a further boost, with Lenovo and Motorola announcing their plans to manufacture smartphones in India in a 40,000 square feet factory in Sriperumbudur near Chennai. The facility currently can create 6 million smartphone units per year. ■■ Xiaomi launched local manufacturing in Visakhapatnam in August 2015 under the Make in India program. The plant exclusively assembles Xiaomi phones and is Xiaomi’s second manufacturing unit outside China. ■■ September 2015 ■■ “Make in India Mittelstand initiative” was launched in partnership with Indian embassy in Berlin, Germany for providing Market Entry Support Services like strategic consulting, tax & legal support, project financing, technology collaboration and facilitation of approvals to German Mittelstand organizations. ■■ Japanese electronics giant Sony got on to the ‘Make in India’ bandwagon. After nearly a decade, the company is getting back to manufacturing in India, with plans confirmed for two models of its television brand Bravia. ■■ World’s largest internet based retailer Amazon opened a warehouse in Pune in September 2015 taking the total count to over 21 with a cumulative storage capacity of over 5 million cubic feet. ■■ October 2015 ■■ India moved up 12 places and reached 130th position in “Ease of Doing Business 2016” report, (World Bank). ■■ India moved up one position to become the world’s seventh most valued ‘nation brand’, with an increase of 32 per cent in its brand value to $2.1 billion in 2015. It was the 8th most valued nation in the world in 2014 and ranked 9th in 2013. ■■ November 2015 ■■ India attracted over US$ 18 billion worth of investments since September 2014 from companies 18 • India Newsletter
viewing the country as a potential electronics manufacturing powerhouse. Some of the major ones including Samsung, Bosch, Phillips, LG and Flextronics have shown a keen interest in creating their manufacturing bases here. ■■ International Tractors Ltd. (Sonalika) invested US$ 75 million for setting up its new Hoshiarpur plant in Punjab with the capacity to manufacture 0.2 million tractors per annum. The plant would contain a single production line for all variants and models and an engine assembly line for 500 engines/day. ■■ December 2015 ■■ General Electric Transport and Alstom won contracts worth a combined US$ 5.6 billion to supply India’s railways with new locomotives. These foreign companies will help improve the vast but old stateowned network. ■■ Following Japanese PM Shinzo Abe’s visit to India, Japan announced setting up a US$ 12 billion fund for ‘Make in India’ related projects. This investment will be in the name of ‘Japan-India Make in India Special Finance Facility’ that will also strengthen the relationship between the countries. ■■ February 2016 ■■ The multi-sectoral Make in India Week (MIIW), a mega event held in Mumbai, was a platform to showcase nation’s focus towards design, innovation and sustainability. MIIW was a resounding success which was attended by over 0.9 million visitors from 102 countries and over 8000 B2B/B2G/G2G meetings was conducted over the course of the week. ■■ March 2016 ■■ India achieved its highest ever FDI inflow for a financial year in 2015-16 at US$ 55.5 billion ■■ Japanese technology giant Hitachi announced its plans to roll out ATMs in India - one of Asia’s largest ATM markets - with the investment capital of US$ 15 million.
■■ April 2016 ■■ US chipmaker Qualcomm plans to establish an innovation lab in Bangalore to provide technical and engineering assistance to the selected companies. It has launched ‘Design in India’ initiative with the aim to mentor up to 10 Indian hardware companies who have the potential to come up with innovative solutions. ■■ India moved up to sixth position amongst the world’s leading manufacturers. India has jumped by three positions from ninth position in the previous report. The growth rate of Manufacturing Value Added (MVA) of India was 5.5 % in 2014 and 7.6 % in 2015. ■■ May 2016 ■■ India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate for quarter January-March stood at 7.9 per cent as against 7.3% in October – December, thereby making it the fastest growing major economy in the world. ■■ June 2016 ■■ In a sweeping overhaul of FDI norms, the government radically liberalised key sectors like defence manufacturing, civil aviation, pharmaceutical and food processing, making India as one of the ‘most open economy’ in the world. ■■ India jumped 13 positions and was placed second in retail potential in the 2016 Global Retail Development Index (GRDI). India was rated 15 in the 2015 Global Retail Development Index. ■■ July 2016 ■■ Actual work on the ground has started on 25% of investments commitments signed during the Make in India week. ■■ August 2016 ■■ India jumped 15 spots to reach 66th position in Global Innovation Index 2016. India was ranked 81 in 2015. ■■ India improved its performance on Logistics Performance Index by 19 positions when compared with its ranking in 2014. India’s ranking has jumped from 54 in 2014 to 35 in 2016.
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■■ September 2016 ■■ India jumped 16 places to the 39th rank in 2016 from last year’s 55th position in the Global Competitiveness Index, highest jump of any country for this year. In 2014 India was in 71st position as per GCI 2014. India has thus jumped 32 positions in two years. ■■ October 2016 ■■ Schneider Electric is preparing to make India its export hub on the back of government’s policies such as Make in India, Digital India and Smart City Mission.28 Schneider Electric
have 28 factories, R&D centers and further plans to invest around US$ 110 million in the coming five years and will keep investing in skill development. ■■ The World Bank’s annual Doing Business 2017 report placed India in 130th position, recognizing India’s achievements in implementing reforms in four of its ten indicators – Trading across Borders, Getting Electricity, Enforcing Contracts and Paying Taxes. Additionally, India’s Distance to Frontier score improved on 6 out of the 10 indicators, showing that India is increasingly progressing
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towards best practice.
The Future ■■ Make in India has now become a calling card for investors to come and invest in the Indian growth story. To further the Indian manufacturing capabilities, the government is focusing on the development of sectors that are going to be the key focus in the coming years. By introduction of new reforms in policies along with a positive economic atmosphere, it has created a fertile ground for businesses to thrive in India.
FDI at a Glance
The national investment promotion agency, provides handholding and facilitation services for attracting investments, including: Following up on approvals from Government departments/agencies on behalf of the investor and the investing community.Providing handholding facilitation services from the point of arrival to the point of departure, including land/site identification and entry procedure advisory.Interacting with all States in a Hub & Spoke Model and providing investors with State policies relating to land/labour/capital and investment. Fixing meetings/appointments between investors and different Government departments/agencies. The team of domain and functional experts provide sector- and state-specific inputs, and handholding support to investors through the entire investment cycle, from pre-investment decision-making to aftercare. ■■ Invest India assist with: ■■ Market strategy ■■ Business plan advisory ■■ Location identification ■■ Expediting regulatory approvals ■■ Facilitating meetings with relevant government and corporate officials ■■ Initiating remedial action on problems faced by investors ■■ Contact Information Invest India, The Ashok, Third Floor, 50B, Diplomatic Enclave, Chanakyapuri New Delhi 110 021, India Telephone No: +91-11-2419 0300 E-mail: email@example.com 10 A.M. to 5:30 P.M. IST (Monday to Friday) India Newsletter • 19
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INDIAN STATE ECONOMIC PROFILE RAJASTHAN ■■ Rajasthan, the largest (area-wise) state in India, is located in the northwestern part of the subcontinent. It is surrounded on the north and north-east by Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, on the east and south-east by Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh and on the southwest by Gujarat. ■■ Rajasthan offers tremendous opportunities in the areas of organic and contract farming as well as in infrastructure developments related to agriculture. Rajasthan is the largest producer of rapeseed, bajra and mustard. It is the second largest producer of oilseeds and spices and third largest producer of soya bean and coarse cereals in India. ■■ Rajasthan is a leading producer of limestone, silver, gold, copper, marble, sandstone, rock phosphate, and lignite. The state is the largest producer of cement in India. It has 21 major cement plants, having a total capacity of 55 million tonnes per annum (MTPA). Rajasthan is also the second-largest producer of milk and the largest producer of wool in India. ■■ Rajasthan has reserves of numerous precious and semiprecious stones and is the largest manufacturer of cut and polished diamonds in the country. The world’s largest centre for gemstone cutting and polishing is located in Jaipur. ■■ In 2015-16 (up to December 2015), tourist arrivals in the state reached 36.66 million. Historic palaces, especially those in Jaipur and Udaipur, offer opportunities to expand the luxury tourism segment, 20 • India Newsletter
with increasing number of tourists visiting wild life sanctuaries and desert locations. ■■ The gross state domestic product (GSDP) of Rajasthan expanded at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.38 per cent over 2004-05 to 2015-16. The state has attracted Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) equity inflows worth US$ 1.31 billion during the period April 2000 to March 2016, according to data released by Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP). ■■ The state has immense potential for electricity generation through renewable energy sources and wind power. Rajasthan Renewable Energy Corporation Ltd has actively promoted solar energy and biomass projects. As of June 2016, Rajasthan had a total installed power generation capacity of 17,953.44 megawatt (MW). ■■ The state has a considerable pool of skilled and technically qualified human resources with more than 200,000 students enrolled in technical institutions. In line with this, a number of IT parks with special infrastructure are being developed. ■■ The policy environment has been favourable for the establishment of industrial units. A single window clearance system (SWCS) for investment approvals is operational in the state and the Bureau of Investment Promotion (BIP) was set up to focus on investments above US$ 2.2 million. Rajasthan stands sixth among Indian states in rankings based on ease of doing business and reforms implementation, according to a study by the World Bank and KPMG.
■■ Key Sectors: ■■ Out of the total allocated budget for operating industries and mineral sector, US$ 22.91 million was proposed to be allocated to the Internal and Extra Budgetary Resources (IEBR) of Rajasthan State Mines and Minerals Ltd. In addition, US$ 36.15 million was proposed to be allocated for the Industries Department and US$ 1.05 million for the Bureau of Investment Promotion of the state. ■■ Rajasthan has huge reserves of cement-grade and Steel-MeltingShop (SMS) grade limestone. SMSgrade limestone from Jaisalmer is supplied to various steel plants in the country. ■■ Rajasthan has 21 major cement plants, having a total capacity of 55 million tonnes per annum (MTPA). It is the largest cement-producing state in India. ■■ As per budget 2016-17, US$ 4.16 million was allocated by the State Government for the Mines and Geology Department. The state government has allocated US$ 22.91 million for the environment, road and medical related works during 2016-17. ■■ The Alwar and Jaipur districts are close to major auto production hubs of the country such as Noida (Uttar Pradesh), Gurgaon and Dharuhera (Haryana); offering excellent advantages for setting up of auto and auto ancillary units. ■■ Over 100 units are currently functional in Bhiwadi, Neemrana and Pathredi in Alwar district, Rajasthan. These are the 3 main auto clusters in Rajasthan.
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org to get more information about possible assistance/subsidies.
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INVEST INDIA Federation House, Tansen Marg New Delhi—110 001 0091-11-23765085, 23487278 email@example.com www.investindia.gov.in
policy and Promotion, Ministry INVESTMENT of Commerce & Industry) and State Governments of India (0.5% The National Investment and Infrastructure Fund(NIIF)
■■ Objective: ■■ To maximize economic impact mainly through infrastructure development in commercially viable projects, both Greenfield and Brownfield, including stalled projects. ■■ Other nationally important projects in manufacturing, if viable commercially ■■ Structure: ■■ The NIIF will be established as one or more Alternate Investment Funds (AIF). It refers to any fund established or incorporated in Indian in the form of a Trust or a Company or a LLP or a body corporate. AIF shall raise funds only through private placement
nvest India is the country’s official agency dedicated to investment promotion and facilitation. Set up as a joint venture between FICCI (51% and cannot accept from any equity), DIPP (35%funds equity held investor (Indian or Foreign) whose by the Department of Industrial value is less than 1 crore Indian Rupees and is prohibited from making application to public for subscription to its securities. AIF can be of three categories; ■■ Category I: Investment in Start-ups, SMEs, infrastructure or social ventures ■■ Category II: Investment in private equity and debt funds
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.
■■ Category III: Primarily for hedge funds, which use complex strategies or leverage to invest in unlisted derivaties and trade with a view to make short-term returns India Newsletter • 29
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TOURISM Yumthang: In the presence of mountains by Hugh & Colleen Gantzer. Mountains are a presence. The Alps are old and grave, like senior citizens with a certain benign tolerance. Spain’s Sierra Nevada flaunt their presence with the white maned arrogance of grandees. The Carpathians, when we encountered them in Romania, had a forbidding mystique about them as if they’re still invoking dark wraiths, vampires and werewolves. Our Himalayas, however, are young, rambunctious, mountains involved in passionate, creative, encounters with lashing storms and torrential rains. The people of the high Himalayas would never dream of attempting to ‘civilize’ them as the Alpine folk have done. We have had to learn to live on sufferance, adjusting our lives to the whimsical ways of these titanic Abodes of Snow. And so have the people of Sikkim, as we discovered when we drove out of the capital, Gangtok… clinging picturesquely, precariously to the slopes of the Himalayas … to Yumthang, 123 kms away.
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■■ The Road to Lachung The road was rugged. It wound through forests that were often both dense and drenched with recent rain, and there were so many waterfalls that we stopped counting them after the first twelve. But here, too, we noticed how Himalayan people had adapted to the hazards of the mountains. Wind and water are the two major powers in the young Himalayas. Storms blow down trees, expose the soil, destabilise steep slopes. Rain then pours down and creates landslides that wipe out roads, fields, villages. In self-defence, the Buddhists of these highlands stretch festoons of bright prayer flags between trees and hillocks, seeking to placate the destructive wind, and use it to send fluttering messages to the gods. On waterfalls and rushing torrents they set up water-spinning prayer drums turning the fury of the stream into a force for unending worship. They also pay great reverence to the highest of the high peaks. From the deck of a wayside tea-shop we got a picture of Kanchenjunga: the snow-covered 8,598 meter-high peak, worshipped as the protector of Sikkim. Even the most enthusiastic
mountaineers respect the reverence paid to this great mountain, rising out of its fluffy quilts of clouds: all climbers stop short of setting foot on this holy peak. Further along the snaking road we stopped at the highway hamlet of Phodong to stretch our legs and lunch on our sandwiches and coffee. On the other side of the road was a shack declaring itself to be a Pan Dokan. It was very popular with two crammed van-loads of domestic tourists. But when one of the vociferous visitors noticed that the back of the shack was perched on stilts, hanging over a cliff, there was an exploding chorus of Baap re baaps and a quick exodus! The bamboos on which such structures stand are tall and strong and we’ve not heard of any of them collapsing under the burden of customers, but to the worried eyes of a plainsdweller they seem to be very fragile. We drove on, negotiated tacky surfaces where bulldozers were chewing into landslides and the Border Roads folk had put up cautionary signs saying Slide, flying rocks and flood prone area. Drive carefully or that rather unnecessary bit of historical information
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that this had been a Disturbed area since1967. And after every one of these adventure tourism notifications came the polite apology Inconvenience regretted. This is, essentially, a military highway to make sure that our bhai-bhais! across the border don’t catch us unawares. Not all the work, however, is done by uniformed personnel. At one point we snapped a small group of Nepalese women, road workers, relaxing under a bright garden umbrella, happy with their infants. They told us that they had been Sikkimese for three generations and that their village was a short distance away. At another point, a place called Old Lachung Village, houses stood on stone plinths raised above fields of tall, golden, grain. Here, the first Tibetan traders had settled on the caravan route between their high country and Sikkim. Now, however, they had moved on to the new Lachung where jobs on the road and with the Army were easily available. Roads, as they always do, were changing the culture and demographics of the land. High stone plinths to ward off hordes of leeches, were no longer needed because subsistence farmers had become permanent government employees. Strategic roads have to be kept open twelve months of the year, in spite of the unceasing ravages of Himalayan storms and ice-melt torrents. We kept on being reminded of the prime purpose of this road. All through our long journey, our Inner Line permits had been checked and re-checked frequently by both the police and the Army. At Chungthang, the headquarters of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police personnel spread. These superbly trained men, who guard the world’s highest frontiers, have their command base where the two rivers, the Laching Chu and the Lachung Chu .. there’s the difference of just an ‘i’ and a ‘u’ … meet to form the Teesta. We followed the rising course of the Lachung Chu as it flowed down from a Himalayan glacier in the north.
Then, after passing the towering Bhim Falls, the mountains opened into the fairly flat valley of the Lachung river. We were relieved to discover that this was where we would spend the night. ■■ The Hamlet of Lachung Scatttered across the valley, and dotted over the green slopes rising out of it, was the mountain settlement, and Army base-camp, of Lachung . Waterfalls silvered the wooded hillsides and a sign said that we were ‘8,000 feet above sea level’: that’s 1,500 feet above our home in the western Himalayas. At first glance, Lachung did not seem to be remarkable in any way but we had learnt that this seemingly innocuous little place had a unique and very old system of total selfgovernance called the Jumsa. A Sikkimese administrator had said “It’s part of a very old tradition and far more effective than a panchayat. All disputes are settled at this level and if any of the inhabitants tries to seek justice outside, he is shunned by everyone in Lachung” He had nodded to himself, smiled, and added, “This is the main reason why the people of Lachung, in spite of the hard lives they lead, as so contented.” Clearly, it is another response to the Lachungese Himalayan way of life, grown out of the historic isolation of these people. They had to rely on their own resources before the 20th century army road gave them allweather access to the outside world. But just to ensure that everything has a spiritual endorsement, and local netas did not go their own selfserving ways, there is the sobering presence of the hamlet’s revered monastery-gompa. We thought of the Medieval alpine villages in Europe. They also had such a monastic ballast to clip the wings of overbearing robber barons! In fact, when we first set eyes on our hotel in Lachung we thought we were staying in the hamlet’s monastery and wondered if we were going to subsist on butter-tea and tsampa! The oddly named Modern Residency Hotel has been built to resemble a gompa: prayer banners and flags
fluttered in the crisp Himalayan breeze; multi-tiered roofs rose; and carved wood facades, painted in brilliant colours, welcomed us. In our cedar-panelled room, we snuggled into our anoraks and climbed up to the terrace of our little hostelry. It was cold up here. Mist drifted down from the mountains and shaggy, black, yaks plodded home in the dusk. Spreading below us was a truly rural scene: farm buildings with wood neatly stacked for the winter, small kitchen gardens, fields of barley, golden corn cobs hanging from the eaves, the votive fragrance of juniper branches being burnt on home altars, and the sound of rushing streams cascading, white, down the mountains. It could have been a setting for a Tolkien tale. We returned to our warm room, dined on steamed mo-mo dumplings and noodles Sikkimese style. We were tired after a rugged, 6-hour drive along winding mountain roads and had an early-morning call. And so, cosseted and warm, we fell into a deep and dreamless sleep. ■■ The Flower Valley of Yumthang Bird song and a crisp wind blew in the dawn, and at five, the higher slopes were gilded with light. At seven, when we boarded our 4x4 vehicle, the green-walled village was awake. We were heading out to the 12,000 foot high valley of Yumthang where only foresters patrolled, herders plodded, and few tourists ventured. We gave a lift to a team of forest guards and also to a very young traveller. Baby Prema was being taken by her young aunt, Donka, to visit her grandmother, the caretaker of a hotspring on the way to Yumthang. In the remote mountains, everyone helps everyone else because no one knows when they’ll need help in return… Now we entered a slightly ominous land, much like the Carpathians, created for myth and legend. Swiftly, on both sides of our rising road, the character of the mountains changed , as if they hadn’t quite decided what personality they should assume. On either side of the winding, road India Newsletter • 31
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now, wild flowers were a tufted golden rug stretching to the feet of the inky-blue mountains. A lone homestead stood above the road, prayer banners fluttering, a golden spiked commemorative chorten hulking beyond. Chortens or stupas contain the relics of Buddhist saints and spread their protective aura all around. The character of the terrain demanded such spiritual defences. Ahead, the mountains became dark and lurking monsters, looming shoulder to shoulder, one behind the other. But when we glanced back at Lachung, it looked like a Scottish glen with the sun lancing down thorough the clouds in a Biblical woodcut way. Then, without warning, as if celestial scene-shifters had been at work, the mountains opened and a sunlit meadow spread against a wood of green trees. At the edge of the wood was a little Swiss cottage: beautiful, lonely and abandoned like something out of a Grimms Brothers’ tale. It was not, however, trapped under a witch’s isolating spell but ensnared in a government prohibition: officials consider it unsafe for inexperienced tourists to spend the night alone in these remote frontier lands! Now the mountains on our left changed their character again. They became the jagged protrusions of Scandinavian folklore: mistsnagged and austere, the haunted domains of trolls and hob-goblins. Appropriately, the scattered boulders at their feet were covered with blotches of a curious rustcoloured lichen as if they had once been the field of a bloody battle. We had entered The Singba Rhododendron Sanctuary. In the cosseting warmth of summer, this protected place blazes with 24 species of rhododendron in an amazing forest of these shiny-leafed plants. All the rhododendrons in all the gardens of the world had originated in Sikkim. Every year, a forest guard assured us, this sanctuary attracts members of the Rhododendron Society, flying in from all over the world. “The 32 • India Newsletter
mountains have given us this natural wealth” he said fervently, “Our job is only to protect it.” But that is not an easy task because the rugged Himalayan environment, that makes the rhododendrons thrive, also encourages a vampire-like plant. As we got higher and deeper into the sanctuary, we noticed that conifers had appeared. Curiously, some were draped with long, white, filmy beards as if they were stricken with debilitating age. It was, we were told, the symptom of a parasitical disease that would sap the life from the trees attacked by it. Clearly, there are hazards even in this enchanted forest! There are, however, checks and balances, too, built into the web of life, the finely adjusted network we call the ecology. Himalayan people have learnt to discover and use these life-sustaining resources. The trees thinned and a gravel road wound down to a foaming stream crossed by a bridge. Riverrounded stones had been stacked one atop the other to resemble virtue-enhancing chortens or stupas. Prayer banners fluttered on the banks of the stream, sending their inscribed invocations to the heavens. From the far side of the bridge, a path lead up to a cottagelike building backed against the rise of the mountain. Donka carried the little girl into the cottage and united her with her grandmother, the keeper of the therapeutic mineral waters of the Yume-samdong hot spring. The waters bubbling from the fiery depths of the earth were very inviting but, as roiling clouds had begun to mass above the mountains, we had no time to plunge into the spring’s, tempting, sulphur-enriched pools. Leaving Yume-samdong behind us we forged ahead and, a little later, we entered Yumthang Valley. It was serenely, magically, beautiful. From the road, the valley sloped down to the pebbly banks of the Lachung Chu. Looking up the valley we saw that the river was fed by two streams and a waterfall tumbling down from the blue mountains.
And high above, charging them and glinting like a beaten-silver plaque, was a glacier. Slowly, we looked to the left, across this range. The mountains swooped down in a V that cupped another up-thrusting peak, its head rising out of drifting clouds. Occasionally, when the sun shafted through, it glistened like a faceted gem as its crest of ice and snow caught the light. The forest guards thanked us and jumped out to set up their week-long camp. We left our car and strode further into the valley, gratefully stretching our tired muscles, dodging a herd of plodding cattle. The valley grew and widened and the slopes were spangled with wild-flowers: red, pink, blue, yellow, white. They grew out of a soft, mossgreen, carpet that touched the base of the mountains. Rising from this thick rug was a line of prayer banners marching like white sentinels up the slope. They were also massed protectively around an impressive, gold-crowned, stupa standing on its own platform just above the road. Beyond this chorten, closer to the head of the valley, was a greenroofed rest-house. And wrapped around it all was the fragrance and the feel and the whispered sounds of silence. We stood, enchanted, for as long as we could, breathing in the cold, clear, air, allowing the peace and the mystique of the valley to soak into us. Then, very reluctantly, we had to leave. We felt sad, on the drive back, anguished by the conflicts of our profession. Our job is to find the magic that lies at the heart of ordinary people, places and things. But, sometimes, we find places of such all-encompassing serenity that we feel reluctant to share it with others for fear that they will despoil it and rob it of all that makes it so special. Perhaps the ruggedness of the journey will deter the vandals. And so, hopefully, the next time we need to heal the abrasions of our workaday lives, the balm of the high hamlet of Lachung and the flower valley of Yumthang will still survive to spread fragrant serenity over us…
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