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Doing business in India

An interview with Vishesh Chandiok


How do you assess the outlook for your economy?

Recent growth rates have disappointed but the cabinet reshuffle and reforms announced by the government – opening up the retail, aviation, broadcast and insurance sectors to FDI and the introduction of a new Manufacturing Policy – are collectively expected to push short-term growth back up towards 7%. The economy’s underlying fundamentals remain robust; the right domestic policies and external conditions could see growth rates return to 8-10%. However, a lot will depend on the ability of the current coalition Government to push forward with reforms.

What are the top three strengths of your economy as a potential target for investors?

India is the world’s largest democracy with a vast, partially untapped, consumer market.  The population is relatively young, increasingly well-educated and English-speaking. It also has some world-class institutions and follows common law.

What should business leaders be aware of when investing in your economy?

India is a large, incredibly diverse country, so business leaders should have plan well thoroughly for each region rather than hope to muddle through with a one-size-fits-all strategy. Regulations can be complex so finding a strong, credible local partners and advisors is essential for foreign investors. And importantly, investors need to take the long-term view of success in India. It’s not the right market if you’re simply looking for a quick, short-term gain.

What sectors does your firm specialise in?

We have experts in many sectors including real estate & construction, healthcare, technology, food & beverage, media and cleantech.

Vikesh Chandiok is National Managing Partner, Grant Thornton India LLP.