India Unplugged | 27th March 2020: Perspectives on India - NZ trade relations
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The food processing industry in India, with a growth of 13% per annum, emerged as one of the most lucrative industries for Kiwi investment in India, in the ‘Business Beyond Barriers' seminar held by INZBC. This came as part of Dr. Devi Singh's submission to the audience of industrialists and international business experts at the seminar held at PwC towers on 3rd Feb.
Clayton Kimpton, Regional Director - India Africa & Middle East for New Zealand Trade & Enterprise (NZTE) and Dr. Singh, were speaking at the first part of this series held on Monday, at the PWC towers, Auckland. Their focus was on removing the myths of international business and talking about the hidden opportunities in trade with India.
Dr. Devi Singh is the Director of India's premier management institute, Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Lucknow. He is currently serving his second term as Director of the Institute, and is a well-known Professor in the area of International Finance & Management.
Dr. Singh reiterated that India has high volumes of production in food, livestock and dairy. However the gap is in the lack of infrastructure in food processing, storage and transportation. Due to which a big proportion of products are lost before it can be bought by the consumer. This area is of great value proposition to the Kiwi companies looking for opportunities to expand in India.
"Although the overall food situation in the country has undergone drastic changes, from recurring scarcity to a food surplus situation today, the Public Distribution System - the backbone of household level food security - continues more or less unchanged since its establishment", said Dr. Singh elaborating on the gap that needs to be filled.
Clayton Kimpton, the Regional Director at New Zealand Trade & Enterprise (NZTE) also spoke at the event. He cautioned New Zealand companies that India was a market for the long term and not for gains in the short term. Clayton said that recently there has been a fall in the India-NZ trade due to the sharp rise in the value of the rupee and thus it was important to diversify trade from just primary to other sectors. He said, "Kiwi goods and brands should be seen as a premium product and not be competed against the local products that may be cheaper in price."
Mr. Kimpton encouraged prospective investors to get in touch with the NZTE team, who has experts operating from the Delhi and Mumbai offices. They can better guide the New Zealand companies in the right markets and help Kiwi's get a better understanding of the Indian business scene.
Keeping in with their aim of building business relations between India and New Zealand, the India New Zealand Business Council (INZBC) has started a series of lectures, in that direction.
"The main purpose of this event is to get the industry moving from both sides of the world", said Sunil Kaushal, Chairman, INZBC. He said that the organisation is planning more events like these that will help introduce the kiwi businesses with the opportunities and challenges of doing business with India. Getting experienced and knowledgeable speakers from India, like Dr. Devi Singh helps the interested parties to hear from the horse's mouth, as it were.
With a good participation and an engaging discussion, the attendees liked the event and would be looking forward to more meaningful engagements like this one.