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Pranjal Sharma

Pranjal Sharma has been analysing, commenting and writing on economic and development policy in India for 25 years. He has worked in print, TV and digital media in leadership positions and guided teams to interpret economic change and India’s engagement with the world

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India Delivers Promises At Davos

After years of being considered a sputtering economy, the aggressive marketing led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has added wind to the sails of domestic industry giants as they expand their businesses abroad

Photo Credit : PTI,

Colourful ad campaigns are not new at Davos. Many countries like Malaysia, Azerbaijan, and Ukraine have built strong investment reputations by their presence at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in the alpine village of Davos.

India made a big mark with its campaign in 2006 and since then has maintained a steady focus on being connected with global investors. Indian groups like Mahindras, Tatas, and Reliance spend a lot of effort and resources in positioning themselves with their worldwide partners, clients and investors.

For most of them, the 2018 summit is a milestone. After years of being considered a sputtering economy, the aggressive marketing led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has added wind to the sails of domestic industry giants as they expand their businesses abroad.

India is back in favour among global investors as Mr. Modi is throwing numbers at them that are difficult to argue with. India is set to be the world’s third largest aviation market by 2025. Over 1000 archaic national laws have been scrapped, making it easier to do business in India. Now India emerged as the number one greenfield investment destination. The country is up 21 places on the logistics performance index. India has also moved up 21 places on global innovation index and 42 ranks on ease of doing business report. And IMF has predicted a 7.4% growth of Indian GDP for 2019.

At his meeting with global business leaders and CEOs were offered these numbers and not just promises. The message is not just that India means business, but that India is doing business already. Mr. Modi emphasized that India has begun to deliver on the promises it has been making. A strong delegation of 6 ministers, two Chief Ministers (Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh) and over 100 India CEOs are contributing to India’s comeback story at Davos. The members of the business delegation led by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) are also busy as ambassadors of India’s economic might.

The entire branding and imaging is being managed by Invest India, the national Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency of India which is the first point of contact for foreign investors. Invest India has been set up as a non-profit agency.

The economic reforms driven by the government since 2014 are now bearing results that CEOs are eager to understand. Until 2014, the global focus had moved away from India. In the last three years, the global community has been watching India with rising interest and some skepticism about sustained change. They have witnessed previous efforts of change that sputtered and stopped. Mr. Modi is attempting to shift the narrative about India as a serious place to do business. Last year China stole the show at Davos with Xi Jinping famously declaring that globalization was important for his country. This at a time when US and Europe are becoming increasingly protectionist. In 2018, India has a similar message for the world. India is not retreating from globalization but is embracing it on its own terms. As the fastest growing free market democracy of the world, India has a unique position in the world. Delegates to Davos will not be allowed to forget that.


Tags assigned to this article:
world economic forum davos narendra modi


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