Maj Gen C P Singh (Retd)
Regaining ‘Soney Ki Chidiya’ Status in 21st Century
India was the largest economy of this region, in the world for most of the times between the period of 10nd Century BC and 18th Century AD. Around 1700 AD, Indian subcontinent had become the world’s largest economy, producing about 25% of global industrial output. It was fondly called the ‘Soney Ki Chidiya’ and attracted East India company and other European Companies to commence trade with India. In 21st Century, we are again moving towards regaining the past glory.
COVID pandemic was the most unprecedented disaster that shook the world in last Century. As the world order was limping back to normalcy after COVID, Ukraine-Russia war started. India outshined the world by very efficient handling of the COVID and a V-shaped economic recovery post COVID, Ukraine war notwithstanding. India presents an exemplary growth in these difficult times, converting global threats into opportunities.
India is expected to be $ 05 Trillion economy by end of 2026, as per IMF projections. In terms of US dollars—average Indians’ income rose by 18% in 2021. It was the third fastest growth in India’s dollar prosperity in the last 50 years. Some of the key pointers of India’s envious growth are flagged in this article.
- Fastest Growing Economy. India is the world’s sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP and the third-largest by purchasing power parity (PPP).The IMF has projected 7.4% growth rate for India in FY 2022-23, making India the fastest growing economy post COVID. Present growth trajectory will see India become the world’s third largest economy by 2024, only behind USA and China.
- Biggest Consumer Market. India, with a population of 139 Crores, and increasing per capita income, forms the biggest consumer market in the world. All the countries are tapping this vast consumer base and hence the relevance of India in the world market. Today, every MNC is making a beeline for India.
- Biggest Manufacturing Hub. Internationally, major western MNCs are making strategic plans to move out of China. India, with it’s rapidly improving infrastructure, cheap labour, educated youth and stable democratic Government provides the best and cost effective alternative to China. India is now also poised to become the factory of the world.
- Youngest Population. India has the youngest population in the world while China, Japan and Europe have started greying. This widely acknowledge demographic dividend with skillful and diligent youth of India is attracting the MNCs to set up bases in India. Young and educated workforce forms India’s biggest asset, in the present times.
- Digital India. India has been leading the world’s BPO industry. Opening Global Capability Centers (GCC) by MNCs is the neo-globalization. India is leading the world in this field also. 1400 MNCs have already set up GCC in India providing jobs to 1.3 million work force and earning a revenue of $36 billion. India has also created 100 unicorns with valuations over one billion dollars. NASSCOM predicts another 40% increase in next three years.
- Poor Country to Wheat Exporter. India has taken giant leaps in improving the agriculture and dairy sectors, in the country. From being a food-grain importer in last century, we have made rapid progress to become wheat exporter today. Now, India is net exporter of wheat, having exported 1.8 million tonnes of wheat to 12 countries. It’s a matter of pride that we are also the largest producer of milk, pulses, jute products and second largest producer of rice, wheat, sugarcane, groundnut, vegetables, fruits and cotton.
- Arms Exporter. Under the ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ programme, India has started manufacturing indigenous ‘state of the art’ war equipment. We are also looking for exporting it to developing countries. India’s defence exports have recorded nearly a eight-fold increase between 2017 and 2022, growing from 1,520 crore to 13000 crores.
Beating the Recession
IMF’s latest global projections predict world economy to plunge into the worst recession, post COVID. While, all developed countries will have negative growth, India holds a beacon of hope for the world. It’s predicted that India will have no effect or least effect of recession because of it’s praiseworthy fiscal policies and steady economic growth.
India opened up to the world in 21st Century and progressed towards a free market economy. Soon, it became the fastest growing economy and will continue to be so, over the next few years. Headwinds are expected from rising inflation, supply chain disruptions and geopolitical tensions. However, there are many positive indications to keep us afloat. Exports have performed exceptionally well during the pandemic and bolstered recovery. India’s gross tax collection has beaten all expectations. Agriculture sector is booming due to repeated normal monsoons. Higher capital spending on infrastructure and asset-building projects are likely to further boost growth multipliers.
India is all set to beat the challenges and emerge as the growth engine for the world economy. Let’s become partners in progress and march in harmony towards a glorious future. Incredible India @75 is destined to regain it’s glorious status of ‘Soney ki Chidiya’ in this Century.