S Iswaran, Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry), Singapore, who was present today at the ASEAN-India Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2018, said the opportunity or collaboration between India and ASEAN have strong growth.
“Both regions are relatively anchored by fundamentals of demographics, the evolution of economy and opportunity in continued investment. Both regions have integrated markets,” the minister said during the ASEAN India Economic Partnership programme.
“India is one country with each state presenting significant variations and that is an opportunity as much as it is a challenge because it means for those who invest time and effort in developing a deep understanding of the market and its nuances and its variations. Similarly, in ASEAN, we have the ASEAN economic community and integrated effort to bring together ASEAN as one seamless market,” Iswaran said.
“Important point to recognize is to understand the relative strengths and opportunities that decide the difference within the different ASEAN member state and how we can go about participating in contributing to them,” he added.
The minister also discussed the key areas where India and ASEAN can focus energies in order to achieve significant optimization.
Area of infrastructure - The Minister emphasised for proper structure and financing r for execution of large-scale projects. Quoting about the Amravati project, he said, “There is a range of opportunities preferring needs across India and ASEAN. This is a need where we can prove our capabilities. There are strong infrastructure companies in India and in ASEAN. How we can work collectively is something we should be looking at.”
Startups and Innovation - Both India and ASEAN have emphasized in innovation and startup ecosystem. This is because the evolution of industries in sectors we see today across all verticals, the disruption factor is high and the potential for new players to come in significant.
Digital economy and e-commerce - It creates opportunities for small and medium-sized entrepreneurs to access markets through digital connectivity.
While concluding, he said, “In ASEAN, there is a clear impetus to integrate market further in order to meet the needs of people and realize the potential of our economies. In India, that effort is equally on the way under the leadership Prime Minister Narendra Modi and we are seeing the results. Both economic entities have a significant growth potential. So I think potential is enormous, we need to focus on specific areas and sectors where we can get a major outcome. And that’s where the opportunity is so that we can build the connectivity between our economies, businesses and our people.”