Skip to main content

No ease in doing business in India: Reliance think-tank expert quotes top German CEOs who were in India

Modi with Merkel at Hanover in Germany: April 2015
By Our Representative
A senior expert, working with the powerful Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL)-run think-tank has said that the top Germans businessmen who had accompanied German Chancellor Angela Merkel to India early this month have outspokenly declared that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has done little to “ease” business environment in India.
The expert, Britta Petersen, who works as senior fellow with the Observer Research Foundation (ORF), quotes Wolfram von Fritsch, Chairperson of Deutsche Messe AG.that Modi had raised “huge expectations” with his 'Make in India' campaign earlier this year at the Hannover in Germany, but “half a year down the line it seems that not much has happened to ease business in India".
Ahead of the German chancellor's vist, a survey by the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce (IGCC) on hindrances of doing business in India in 2015 lists bureaucracy (58 percent), lack of infrastructure (52 percent) and corruption (45 percent) as the main obstacles for companies, followed by tax disputes (32 percent) and lack of skilled people (35 percent), which ORF expert cites to point towards may have gone wrong.
According to the ORF expert Fritsch as also others in the 30-head strong German business delegation, who brought forward their grievances in the meeting that was jointly organised by the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), IGCC, and the Asia Pacific Committee of German Business.
Peterson says, Amitabh Kant, secretary for Industrial Policy and Promotion, may think that "the process of growth" in India has just begun, but German CEOs rather seemed to believe “rating agencies such as Fitch, Moody's and recently the Asian Development Bank (ADB) that cut down India's growth forecast to 7.4 percent from 7.8 percent for this year.”
According to the expert, “For them, this is more than a statistic exercise. Many of the German companies that are already present in India, especially the car and machine building industry, pointed out that they already have over-capacities in India built up during the heydays of the UPA government. And they are afraid to get disappointed by the India story for a second time.”
“Slower economic growth worldwide and a less bullish outlook on India led to a slow-down of the annual trade volume between the two countries. Instead of cracking the much awaited 20-billion Euro mark, it is staggering around 16 billion Euro this year”, says the expert.
“This is all the more regrettable since Germany as one of the leading economies worldwide can play a major role in making Modi's 'Make in India' campaign successful. During the last ten years, German companies have invested more than five billion Euro in India, while Indian companies invested four billion in Germany, conversely”, adds the expert.
The expert quotes Hubert Lienhard, Chairman of the Asia-Pacific Committee of German Business and CEO of Voith, a family-owned mechanical engineering company to say, "At the moment my own company has 20 percent more capacity than we need in the country. I hope that we will meet again here in one year and all the plans of the Indian government have been transformed into action. Then we will continue to invest."
The expert quotes Wolfram von Fritsch of the Deutsche Messe AG as saying that admits he is “already checking on other countries such as Indonesia because a major project that he had planned near Delhi seems to be going nowhere.”
Others had a similar view: Catharina Claas-Muehlhaeuser, who heads the Board of Directors at Claas, one of the world leading producers of agricultural machines, says, "Without infrastructure we will leapfrog nowhere". Adds Siemens CEO Joe Kaeser, says. "Everywhere in the world you have to develop energy and infrastructure first, then comes industry".
“Siemens has been in India for almost 100 years and Kaeser had travelled to India five times this year because his company wants to sell technology for smart cities on a large scale.”, the expert says, quoting him further as saying, "Making one single project work is better than any talk."

Comments

TRENDING

Green revolution "not sustainable", Bt cotton a failure in India: MS Swaminathan

Counterview Desk
In a recent paper in the journal “Current Science”, distinguished scientist PC Kesaven and his colleague MS Swaminathan, widely regarded as the father of the Green Revolution, have argued that Bt insecticidal cotton, widely regarded as the continuation of the Green Revolution, has been a failure in India and has not provided livelihood security for mainly resource-poor, small and marginal farmers.
Sharply taking on Green Revolution, the authors say, it has not been sustainable largely because of adverse environmental and social impacts, insisting on the need to move away from the simplistic output-yield paradigm that dominates much thinking. Seeking to address the concerns about local food security and sovereignty as well as on-farm and off-farm social and ecological issues associated with the Green Revolution, they argue in favour of what they call sustainable ‘Evergreen Revolution’, based on a ‘systems approach’ and ‘ecoagriculture’.
Pointing out that Evergreen Revol…

World Bank clarifies: Its 26th rank to India not for universal access to power but for ease of doing business

By Our Representative
In a major embarrassment to the Government of India, the World Bank has reportedly clarified that it has not ranked India 26th out of 130 countries for providing power to its population. The top international banker’s clarification comes following Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal’s claim that India has “improved to 26 position from 99” in access to electricity in just one year.

Some Hindu bodies in US defending BJP-RSS' divisive, violent activities: Agnivesh

Counterview Desk Last week, Washington DC saw speakers at a religious freedom roundtable, chaired by the US Ambassador for Religious Freedom, Sam Brownback, express concern over "eroding" space for religious freedom in India. Dr Mike Ghouse, executive director, of the Center for Pluralism in Washington DC, referring to the roundtable, said in an email alert that Indian-Americans have "a moral duty to prevent India from being labeled as a Country of Particular Concern by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF)".

Rejoinder: Inescapable to have Central Water Commission as strong technical body in India

By BN Navalawala*
This is with reference to Counterview Blog (December 5, 2018), "Modi govt 'shelves' water reforms report, shows 'no interest' in its recommendations", below mentioned are my comments/observations thereon:
A committee was constituted under the Chairmanship of Dr. Mihir Shah, Former Member, Planning Commission, for restructuring of Central Water Commission (CWC) and Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) for optimal development of water resources in the country in the backdrop of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM).

Preventing childhood deaths: India performs worse than Bangladesh, "equals" Pakistan

By Rajiv Shah
A just-released study, “The Pneumonia and Diarrhea Progress Report 2018”, prepared by the International Vaccine Access Centre (IVAC) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, has identified India among 15 other countries which are still far off the mark in achieving the targets of the Global Action Plan for the Prevention of Pneumonia and Diarrhea (GAPPD).

India's rewritten textbooks talk of demerits of democracy, praise Hitler, underrate Mughals

Counterview Desk
A detailed, 3,800-word review of the books rewritten under directions of the BJP rulers across India since Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power in May 2014 has suggested that one of aims of the books is to instill a sense of doubt about India’s democratic polity among the country’s young minds. Reviewed in the prestigious US journal, “The New York Review of Books”, in its latest issue (December 6, 2018) by Alex Traub, the scrutiny insists, the effort has also been to paint Indian history from the angle of “Hindu triumphalism”, even as creating “Islamophobia”.

Govt of India "tarnishing" NGO reputation, dossier leaked selectively: Amnesty

Counterview Desk
Amnesty International India has said that a deliberate attempt is being made to tarnish its reputation by leaking a dossier, supposedly made by investigating agencies, to media without giving it access to any such information. The high profile NGO’s claim follows a Times Now report about proceedings launched by investigative agencies, including Enforcement Directorate (ED) against the rights body for “violations” of rules pertaining to overseas donations.

60 ex-civil servants seek release of CAG reports on Rafale, demonetisation before 2019 polls

Counterview Desk
As many as 60 retired civil servants have asked President Ram Nath Kovind to expedite the release of Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) reports on demonetisation and the Rafale deal. The letter, signed mainly by former Indian Administrative Service, Indian Foreign Service and Indian Police Service officers, regrets that the status of the audit is "unclear”. According to them, “An impression is gaining ground that CAG is deliberately delaying its audit reports on demonetisation and Rafale deal till after the May 2019 elections so as not to embarrass the present government”.

Four children die after poor UP Dalit, Muslim families forced to flee to forest area: PVCHR

Counterview Desk
Peoples’ Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR) has said that the forest department police’s crackdown, allegedly without any prior notice, on Dalit and Muslim households in Dakhin Tola, Churk Bazaar, Sonbhadra district, Uttar Pradesh, beating up “children and old people, women, and men in an inhuman way”, has led to “forced displacement, starvation and discrimination”. This has reportedly affected about 350 people.

Murder of Tamil Nadu teenage Dalit girl: "Stoic silence" despite #MeToo movement

Counterview Desk
Brinelle D'souza, who is with the Centre for Health and Mental Health, School of Social Work, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, has prepared a strong statement to protest the brutal murder of 13-year-old Rajalakshmi. "Other than a few media reports, this gruesome killing has not caught national attention despite a very vibrant #MeToo campaign currently underway", regrets D'souza.