Since the early 1990s, India has transformed its economy into a global powerhouse. Despite recent deceleration in GDP growth, India continues to be one of the fastest growing economies in the world and has the potential to become one of the three largest global economies by 2050. India’s growing population, rising per capita income levels, rapidly expanding manufacturing and services sectors, and the associated infrastructure and natural resources requirements make it a tremendous market of opportunity for Canadian exporters and investors. Canadian exporters and investors. The growing competitiveness of its firms—coupled with their strong desire to venture abroad—also make India an important source of strategic investment for Canada. India’s potential as a talent pool is tremendous. It is already a recognized leader in mathematics, sciences and engineering and its excellent academic institutions continue to produce a large labour force of well-educated, English-speaking professionals. But India is also a vast and multifaceted country where conducting business can be difficult. Key market challenges for Canadian companies include restrictive import and investment regulations, limitations on foreign services providers, inadequate enforcement of intellectual property rights and low transparency in the contracting process. To succeed in this complex environment, Canadian firms need access to timely and high-quality market intelligence. Concerted effort between governments and businesses to increase awareness of Canada’s strong capabilities and cost competitiveness in priority sectors is also essential.
The Government of Canada has identified India as a GCS priority market—based on extensive consultation with government, academic and Canadian business and industry representatives—and has developed a comprehensive Market Plan that identifies the following sectors as offering clear market opportunities well suited to Canadian capabilities and interests in the region:
Canada-India Commercial Relations, 2005-2009 ($ Millions)
The Government of Canada will continue to monitor and influence India’s commercial policies and regulations in favour of Canadian interests, including by working closely with Canadian companies active in the market to address key barriers such as the country’s restrictive import regulations, limits on foreign services providers, inadequate enforcement of intellectual property rights and low transparency in contracting processes. New bilateral agreements on science and technology and foreign investment will help open new doors for Canadian companies, as will ongoing work to secure Canada’s place as an important gateway for Asia Pacific commerce. Canada’s Trade Commissioner Service in India has expanded with new trade offices in Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Kolkata and additional resources in Delhi and Mumbai. Trade commissioners will continue to focus on promoting Canada as a gateway to North America, a key investment destination and a science and technology partner.
Canada has a number of bilateral trade and investment policy instruments in place that are helping to facilitate and support Canadian commercial engagement in the country:
Unless otherwise stated, all data is for 2009 and expressed in Canadian dollars. All data based on latest available national statistics drawn from a variety of sources, including Statistics Canada, Export Development Canada, Bank of Canada, IMF WEO, UNCTAD.
For further information about India, visit the Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada website or contact the Trade Commissioner Service at 1-888-306-9991.
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