Med-tech, fintech, games, defense can drive future trade between India and Sweden, says the Business Council
New Delhi: With Swedish companies planning to invest close to $ 1 billion in India over the next two years, future trade between the two countries could be characterized by medical technology, fin-tech, gaming and even defense, according to the Sweden-India Business Council (SIBC).
SIBC, which conducts roundtable discussions and workshops for startups, small and medium-sized companies, large companies and public institutions, is a knowledge council between Sweden and India.
According to 13th business climate survey – conducted annually by the Swedish Chamber of Commerce India, the Swedish Embassy in India, the Swedish Consulate General in Mumbai and Business Sweden – Swedish companies plan to invest $ 1 billion in India over the next two years. From 2015-20, companies have already invested a total of $ 2 billion in India, according to the survey, which was released last week.
Asked which areas are critical for the trade relationship India and Sweden, SIBC chairman Robin Sukhia said in an email interview with ThePrint: “We see growth in medical technology, fin-tech and gaming. And we see great potential in the defense . “
In June, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh invited leading Swedish defense company to establish manufacturing bases in India. He added that companies such as SAAB AB, which exports the JAS 39 Gripen fighter aircraft, already have a presence in India and that other Swedish companies should also see it as a major investment destination for defense manufacturing.
There are over 220 Swedish companies in India and about 60 Indian companies in Sweden, where the latter are sometimes seen as a test market for the larger EU, Sukhia said.
In sectors such as the aviation industry, cooperation between Sweden and India is in its infancy. “It had a slow start but is now making up for the lost time, a significant interaction is underway between Svenska Rymdbolaget and ISRO, we are happy to support such initiatives and add the startup element,” added Sukhia.
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Increase trade through initiatives such as “Time For India”
Since the establishment of diplomatic relations with Sweden in 1949, India has become its third largest trading partner in Asia after China and Japan. 2009-10 bilateral trade between India and Sweden passed $ 2 billion. Ministry of Foreign Affairs calculated In 2013, that trade is ready to pass $ 3 billion.
According to the Indian Ministry of Commerce, however, there has been a decline in total trade over the past four years. Total trade amounted to $ 2.2 billion 2017-18, $ 2.1 billion 2018-19, $ 1.8 billion 2019-20 and $ 1.7 billion 2020-21.
Asked how New Delhi and Stockholm plan to address this and increase trade, Sukhia said that political relations between the two countries have seen an increase in recent years and that the two share common goals in the Leadership Group for Industry Transition (LeadIT ) – a body launched by India and Sweden at the 2019 UN climate summit and supported by the World Economic Forum.
“Covid-19 has highlighted the challenges of supply chains and logistics, and the industry on both sides is making the changes to swing efficiently and sustainably,” he added.
A week-long trade promotion event, called ‘Time For India’, will take place in four Swedish cities November 8-11. Sweden’s Ambassador to India Klas Molin, Sweden’s Consul General in Mumbai Anna Lekvall and other high – level dignitaries will be present.
(Edited by Paramita Ghosh)
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