INDIA’S GROSS domestic product (GDP) rate in the industry sector is 15 per cent at par with that of China and its rural agriculture GDP rate is about 1.5 per cent. The gross GDP growth rate is about 8.5 per cent, said Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research centre senior scholar and consulting professor at Stanford University, USA Dr Rafiq Dossani.
He was speaking on the topic of ‘The New India: Opportunities and Challenges in Knowledge Economy’ at a lecture organised by the Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalya (DAVV) at their auditorium, Khandwa Road campus today.
Dr Dossani said that the economic setup of China and India are vastly different and India can be a successful model following its own unique concept without having to enforce decisions on the public.
He however, expressed doubts saying that aspersions are cast over President APJ Abdul Kalams vision of transforming India into a super power as financially speaking India is still a poor country and it will take more time than envisaged for emerging out of the rut of a developing country tag.
He emphasized that though China had made tremendous progress in the manufacturing sector it was loosing out on this front from the emergence of competitor countries like Vietnam.
In the last 25 years China has not been able to build its own brand of companies in the IT sector, while India had several like TCS, Satyam, Infosys and others to boast of. India needs to capitalize on this phenomenon by keeping in mind that global capital does not respect any geographical boundaries and meanders its way flowing into place giving the maximum profit.
The dot com segment is growing in the country but needs fresh blood. The Indian software industry was created by large firms and not by startups. The venture capital available is of a short-term basis and ability to take risks both on part of investor and company is lacking.
The opportunities here are increasing due to the rising importance of services, though it will take time to reach the highest level.
India is widely recognised as the most important new player in knowledge industry. The need of the hour is to provide an interface between the academia and industry thus providing the right mix of the best of minds with the best of experience. The education at primary, secondary and university level is weak and the shortfalls need to be rectified.
There is a constant clash between training and education and the two are considered separately and now need to be fused together.
The universities anywhere in the country provide faculty and students of the caliber comparable with that in any other university and what is required is an environment for innovative development.
India is attracting jobs through outsourcing and both countries involved in this give and take relation benefit out of it as one gets jobs and the other high quality work done at low price.
Research and Development (R&D) is of tow types ‘cutting edge’ and ‘catch up’ and while the latter is safe to follow yielding results over longer run the former is a risk factor giving instantaneous and unique returns.
Being an observer on Asia-Pacific security he stated that the arms race has already gone out of hand and the major powers including USA and Russia are building more nuclear warheads.
Pyongyang recently detonated its nuclear bomb and Tehran sooner or later is slated to follow suit. The security concerns in the South East Asia region are already on a heightened plain and countries like Japan and others might try possessing their own nuclear weapons as the utopia of a nuclear umbrella provided by any of the superpowers gets holed.
Dossanis research includes security and energy sector reform in India. He has penned books on ‘Telecommunication Reforms In India’ and ‘Prospects for Peace in South Asia’ in association with a senior Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) functionary. He has also been invited as a member on the Planning Commission committee for reforms and has been on the advisory body of several agencies like SEBI and TRAI.
EMRC Director Dr Prabhakar Singh welcomed the guests. Professor Akhilesh Singh proposed the vote of thanks in the function attended by students and members of the business community.