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August - September 2009


Business Forum

UKIBC AND HSBC RESEARCH REPORT REVEALS INDIAN DIASPORA INCREASING INVESTMENT IN INDIA DESPITE WORLDWIDE DOWNTURN

The report ‘Global Indians: A study of investment attitudes’ provides new insight into non-resident Indian (NRI) attitudes towards the Indian economy. The report reveals that the global downturn has made India even more desirable to NRIs, who are bullish about India’s growth and continue to invest heavily in India. The survey and case studies within the report were conducted by the UKIBC and supported by HSBC. HSBC’s partnership with the UKIBC, which also includes a series of business events Insight India, is part of its summer celebrations of Indian culture surrounding the bank’s sponsorship of Indian Summer at the British Museum, a season of exhibitions and events focusing on India.

The report reveals that the global recession has made India a more attractive prospect to businesses overseas, together with India’s business potential ranked as good or excellent by 97.6 per cent of the sample. 95.3 per cent of respondents felt that India would fare better than their country of residence during the downturn, mainly due to sluggish growth and saturated markets in developed countries, coupled with strong domestic demand driven by the expanding middle classes in India.

The most alluring sectors were found to be ICT, followed by the built environment, life sciences and creative and media. This is consistent with UKIBC’s and UK Trade & Investment’s priority sectors for UK Plc in India. ICT was considered to be the fastest growing industry sector in India. In light of the findings, the UKIBC and HSBC held three Insight India events in July, to provide businesses in Leicester, Manchester and Birmingham with practical advice on how to enter and flourish in the Indian market.

Commenting on the report, Sharon Bamford, UKIBC CEO said: “Global Indians have an overwhelming confidence in India’s emergence and this is reflected in their existing and planned investment and business links with India. The current economic slowdown has made them more, not less, committed to India and those profiled demonstrate what can and is being achieved.”

Zarir J Cama, Group General Manager International and Continental Europe, HSBC Holdings plc added: “Undertaking this research report with the UKIBC reinforces HSBC’s commitment to doing business with, and in, India and further reflects our position at the forefront of fostering trade ties between the two countries. This partnership forms part of HSBC’s Cultural Exchange programme; which this year focuses on India through HSBC’s sponsorship of Indian Summer – a season of exhibitions and events at the British Museum focusing on India.”

Manoj Badale, the co-founder and managing partner of Blenheim Chalcot, which has various operations in India and appears as a case study in the report, said: “The recession has forced everyone to review their business plans and strategies. I think the long-term growth of India makes it an even more attractive investment destination, and the recent post-election political clarity will be a real boost.”

The report ‘Global Indians: A study of investment attitudes’ surveyed global NRI professional and business communities in the US, the UK and Singapore with the case studies, from Manoj Badale, Imran Hakim, Lord Rana, Jag Mundhra, Dr Shyam Bhaskaran, Shobha Tsering Bhalla and Balwant Jain, echoing the current optimism towards India and the Indian economy.

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