#March2024 #ASEAN #Asia Pacific #Market

Is India the New China +1?

India is attracting interest as investors’ eyes shift away from China and Vietnam.

‘Only the most attractive destinations are attracting attention from investors. In Asia, that’s India. My old firm began in China 25 years ago and it was only China until 10 years ago. Now, they’ve laid off half the China team and doubled the India team.’

India's manufacturing sector is growing, with a blue-collar boom and white-collar recession.

‘For the first time in India, which is predominantly a service economy, you're seeing a slowdown in services and growth in manufacturing, thanks to Modi’s “Made in India” and “China Plus One.”’

Why it matters: Investments in manufacturing are surging.

‘India is one of our fastest-growing markets. We're looking to double down. Our CEO is now looking at moving more global roles into this part of the world.’

By the numbers: Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the fastest growing sector, contributing 34% of India’s total manufacturing and 130 million jobs.

‘SMEs are India’s engine of growth. Obviously, there are challenges, but this segment is our biggest goldmine.’

Yes, but India will not replace China.

‘For the past 15 years, I have been hearing that India would be the next big thing, but this time it might be true. However, it is not the next China; there is only one China.’

Government regulations and lack of clarity on investment policies often make shifting operations from China to India hard.

‘While there are a lot of “eye-opening” opportunities, the restrictions are “eye-watering”. We spent two years just to incorporate an office.’

India’s consumer market has been an enigma for MNCs for decades. Not everyone has the skill or the stamina for it, but those who do can reap rich rewards. Our latest report, Ten Insights on India Consumer Markets, reveals what it takes to succeed in this highly competitive market.

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