While India’s growth story remains on the track, at the end of three years of Modi-Government there is a clear realization that keeping promises is never as easy as making them. A number unanticipated socio-economic and geopolitical factors influence your plans – in a positive as well as negative manner.
With Britain’s quitting Europe post-Brexit, already frosty relations with Russia, and unpredictability of undemocratic China – puts Europe in a spot to explore self-reliance, and to look for new reliable allies.
Historically, India and Europe have been miles apart, but presently we find each other at a juncture where we can benefit immensely by joining hands – like natural allies!
- European manufacturers of automobiles, machinery, tools and defense equipment will benefit through better access to the growing market.
- Infrastructure and construction industry in Europe will benefit thanks to rising demand in India. India will be able to build better, safer and faster roads, bridges and ports.
- European coach manufacturing, and rail industry will benefit. India can have better Rails and Metros for urban transportation.
- India can partner with European who are leading in manufacturing-related Information Technology – PLM (Product Life-Cycle Management), IoT (Internet of Things), Big Data analytics & Industrie 4.0 initiatives (Smart Manufacturing).
- Europe as the world leader in clean energy technologies (wind and Solar) can help India reach the Paris Agreement commitments. We can collaborate on EV (Electrical Vehicle) – European technology and Indian ingenuity in making the EV affordable.
- Europe as the champion of Waste Management can support India in its 100 Smart cities initiatives.
- A deep understanding of how the European Mittelstand (highly focused medium-sized enterprises) clicks, will provide us insights into how balanced, sustainable, inclusive and employment-driven growth can be achieved.
- India and Europe can work more intensely on skills development – vocational training, and dual education. Europe with its demography and falling working population can depend upon Indian resources – Engineering, IT and Management.
- India and Europe can work more closely on R& D and Innovation. Manufacturing is Europe’s forte, and it is imperative for them to maintain the technological and qualitative edge. India plans to (and must) enhance their manufacturing share in the GDP since only manufacturing can create job-driven, inclusive growth. Different collaborative models of manufacturing can be worked upon between India and Europe.
- GST (Goods & Services Tax) unleashes the power of Logistics and Supply Chain Management in India. Europeans – famous for attention to the details, meticulous planning, and timely execution – can contribute to our Logistics industry while we set the infrastructure.
- Road safety remains our major concern with around 150 000 fatalities on our streets year after year. Europe with its comparable roads length, vehicles on the streets, and moving at much higher speed manages with just 2% of our fatalities – trend reducing. India and Europe can definitely work together on Road Safety to save innocent lives.
- Europe wants to do a lot of developmental activities in Africa in order to uplift the standard of living of Africans, – by providing basic services and infrastructure and modernizing agro-based industries. India – with its strong presence in Africa with the Indian Diaspora can provide good on-ground support.
- With an ageing population, Europe will be more and more in need of getting qualified health technicians as well as nursing personnel. Jointly planned skills development initiative can generate quality healthcare resources.
- Both the countries can work jointly on technology-driven healthcare/diagnostic, and on alternative medicine, and alternative therapies.
India’s ongoing reforms, improving ease of doing business, and the power of rising middle-class coupled with Europe’s focus on strong, innovative and sustainable growth offer us enormous opportunities for working hand-in-hand – and more so in the present geo-political scenario.