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

Congress 'promises' cancellation of Adani power project: Jharkhand elections

Counterview Desk
Pointing out that people's issues take a backseat in Jharkhand's 2019 assembly elections, the state's civil rights organization, the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha, a coalition of activists and people’s organisations, has said that political parties have largely ignored in their electoral manifestos the need to implement the fifth schedule of the Constitution in a predominantly tribal district.

Gujarat refusal to observe Maulana Azad's birthday as Education Day 'discriminatory'

By Our Representative
The Gujarat government decision not to celebrate the National Education Day on !monday has gone controversial. Civil society organizations have particularly wondered whether the state government is shying away from the occasion, especially against the backdrop of "deteriorating" level of education in Gujarat.

Hindutva founders 'borrowed' Nazi, fascist idea of one flag, one leader, one ideology

By Shamsul Islam*
With the unleashing of the reign of terror by the RSS/BJP rulers against working-class, peasant organizations, women organizations, student movements, intellectuals, writers, poets and progressive social/political activists, India also witnessed a series of resistance programmes organized by the pro-people cultural organizations in different parts of the country. My address in some of these programmes is reproduced here... 
***  Before sharing my views on the tasks of artists-writers-intellectuals in the times of fascism, let me briefly define fascism and how it is different from totalitarianism. Totalitarianism is political concept, a dictatorship of an individual, family or group which prohibits opposition in any form, and exercises an extremely high degree of control over public and private life. It is also described as authoritarianism.
Whereas fascism, while retaining all these repressive characteristics, also believes in god-ordained superiority of race, cultur…

Ex-World Bank chief economist doubts spurt in India's ease of doing business rank

By Rajiv Shah
This is in continuation of my previous blog where I had quoted from a commentary which top economist Prof Kaushik Basu had written in the New York Times (NYT) a little less than a month ago, on November 6, to be exact. He recalled this article through a tweet on November 29, soon after it was made known that India's growth rate had slumped (officially!) to 4.5%.

With RSS around, does India need foreign enemy to undo its democratic-secular fabric?

By Shamsul Islam*
Many well-meaning liberal and secular political analysts are highly perturbed by sectarian policy decisions of RSS/BJP rulers led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, especially after starting his second inning. They are vocal in red-flagging lynching incidents, policies of the Modi government on Kashmir, the National Register of Citizens (NRC), the demand for 'Bharat Ratna' to Savarkar who submitted 6-7 mercy petitions to the British masters (getting remission of 40 years out of 50 years' sentence), and the murder of constitutional norms in Goa, Karnataka and now in Maharashtra.

Rushdie, Pamuk, 260 writers tell Modi: Aatish episode casts chill on public discourse

Counterview Desk
As many as 260 writers, journalists, artists, academics and activists across the world, including Salman Rushdie, British Indian novelist, Orhan Pamuk, Turkish novelist and recipient of the 2006 Nobel Prize in literature, and Margaret Atwood, Canadian poet and novelist, have called upon Prime Minister Narendra Modi to review the decision to strip British Indian writer Aatish Taseer of his overseas Indian citizenship.

Girl child education: 20 major states 'score' better than Gujarat, says GoI report

By Rajiv Shah
A Government of India report, released last month, has suggested that “model” Gujarat has failed to make any progress vis-à-vis other states in ensuring that girls continue to remain enrolled after they leave primary schools. The report finds that, in the age group 14-17, Gujarat’s 71% girls are enrolled at the secondary and higher secondary level, which is worse than 20 out of 22 major states for which data have been made available.

Worrying signs in BJP: Modi, Shah begin 'cold-shouldering' Gujarat CM, party chief

By RK Misra*
The political developments in neighbouring Maharashtra where a Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress government assumed office has had a trickle down effect in Gujarat with both the ruling BJP and the Congress opposition going into revamp mode.

Post-Balakot, danger that events might spiral out of control is 'greater, not less'

By Tapan Bose*
The fear of war in South Asia is increasing. Tensions are escalating between India and Pakistan after the Indian defence minister's announcement in August this year that India may revoke its current commitment to only use nuclear weapons in retaliation for a nuclear attack, known as ‘no first use’. According to some experts who are watching the situation the risk of a conflict between the two countries has never been greater since they both tested nuclear weapons in 1998.

'Favouring' tribals and ignoring Adivasis? Behind coercion of India's aborigines

By Mohan Guruswamy*
Tribal people account for 8.2% of India’s population. They are spread over all of India’s States and Union Territories. Even so they can be broadly classified into three groupings. The first grouping consists of populations who predate the Indo-Aryan migrations. These are termed by many anthropologists as the Austro-Asiatic-speaking Australoid people.