Asia-Pacific Beyond COVID-19

“We will use our experience as the world’s largest democracy for the benefit of the world.”

Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India

October 15, 2020

Dear BGA Clients,

This week, BGA continues its “Asia-Pacific Beyond Covid” series with a deep dive into India. Each report will highlight markets and how our analysts expect them to change over the next few years. They will explore economic, social, political and geopolitical trends that will reshape each market in the aftermath of the global pandemic. These reports leverage our people, BGA’s greatest asset, and our established track record of combining global, regional and local expertise.

Questions and comments are welcome and can be directed to BGA Head of Research Murray Hiebert at mhiebert@bowergroupasia.com.

October 15, 2020

Best Regards,

Murray Hiebert,
Director of Research, BowerGroupAsia

Excerpt from October 15 Report:

India’s Post-Covid Reform Agenda

In the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, India is reforming and transforming at a fast pace. The reforms are a positive signal to foreign investors looking to expand their footprint in India and manufacture at scale, making India globally competitive and an attractive destination for companies. The challenge for the government will be to implement all these reforms at a time when the country is fighting the two battles of containing the pandemic and reviving the economy, particularly in ensuring that the ambitious agenda is met without exceeding allocated timeframes and budgets. Some of the areas to watch closely include manufacturing, infrastructure, technology, pharma, defense and space, as well as digitization. General government priorities of interest to foreign companies and governments alike also include the “Make in India” campaign and supply chain management, especially for small and medium enterprises.

Though India is approaching the highest number of confirmed cases in the world, it is rising to the challenges posed by the pandemic. Increased testing, combined with a high recovery rate attributed to a younger demographic profile, has resulted in a replication value of less than 1, implying that the pandemic is now waning in India. The country reached its peak in mid-September, after which new infections have been on a steady decline. India has three vaccine candidates in Phase 2 and 3 trials, with the government developing a vaccine distribution plan. Over 400 to 450 million vaccine doses will be given to 200 to 250 million people by July 2021.

Meanwhile, though India’s economy has been strongly affected by the global slowdown and domestic lockdowns, the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has undertaken an ambitious reform agenda to return the country to growth. The IMF has forecasted India’s GDP will contract in the current fiscal year by 10.3 percent, but it will witness a sharp revival with an estimated GDP growth of 8.8 percent next fiscal year, putting India in the pole position as the fastest growing economy.

Indicators already point to a return to growth, and the government hopes that reforms will maintain this trend. The Nikkei Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index jumped to 56.8 in September from 52.0 in August, the highest since January 2012, as manufacturing activity in September grew at its fastest pace in over eight year and a relaxation in restrictions led to a surge in demand and output. Consumption indicators such as energy, automobiles and air travel increased to pre-Covid levels.

Please see the full report for a detailed exploration of India’s post-Covid reform agenda. BGA will continue to monitor and keep you apprised as developments occur in India. If you have any questions or comments, please contact BGA India Managing Director Ratan Shrivastava at ratan@bowergroupasia.com.

Best Regards,

BGA India

BGA INDIA | Unit 56, Level 18, One Horizon Center, Golf Course Road, Sector-43 | DLF Phase 5, Gurgaon | 122002 | India

BGA on COVID-19:

AG.ORF.5.28.20

Akshobh Giridharadas,
COVID-19’s Origins Maybe in Asia but its Breaking Point has been in the West, Observer Research Foundation
May 28, 2020

MH-EAsiaForum.May25

Murray Hiebert,
COVID-19 Threatens Democracy in Southeast Asia, East Asia Forum
May 25, 2020

WH-YoungChinaWatchers.6-20

Will Heidlage, moderator
Webinar: Assessing China’s COVID-19 Diplomacy
June 20, 2020

JC.Today.6-8-20

Jim Carouso,
A Singapore of Greater Certainty is What Businesses are Hoping for, Today
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Ernie Bower,
as quoted in Covid-19 pandemic leads some companies to rethink China exposure, turn sights on South-east Asia, The Straits Times
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Rupert Hammond-Chambers,
as quoted in Taiwan Emerging From Pandemic With a Stronger Hand Against China, Bloomberg
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May 12, 2020

Prashanth Parameswaran,
The Challenge of Grading Asia on COVID-19, The Diplomat
May 12, 2020

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Adib Zalkalpi,
interview on Perikatan Nasional’s Big Test, Channel News Asia
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Justin Sosne,
Companies Must Act with Moral Integrity and Courage in Face of Coronavirus, Medium
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Akshobh Giridharadas,
The Economic & Political Impact of the Coronavirus Could Be Devastating for the U.S., Stratnews Global
April 10, 2020

AG-VD.Diplomat.4-29

Akshobh Giridharadas
and Vaman Desai,
After COVID–19: Manufacturing India’s New Economic Potential, The Diplomat
April 29, 2020

AZ.StraitsTimes.4.21.20

Adib Zalkalpi,
as quoted in Coronavirus: Malaysians United in Fight, but Divided in Blame as Politics Rises Again, The Straits Times
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JS.BusTimes.4.7.20

Justin Sosne,
Companies Must Help Accelerate Through the Curve, The Business Times
April 7, 2020

SS.Kathmandu Post.4.6.20

Sujeev Shakya,
Lockdown Musings: This is the best reflective time we have got—everyone needs to use it productively, Kathmandu Post
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AG.ORF.3.17.20

Akshobh Giridharadas,
From a Seafood Market to Global Markets: 2020 Has Become the Year of COVID-19, Observer Research Foundation
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Archived Updates: COVID-19

October 15, 2020
October 8, 2020
October 1, 2020
September 24, 2020
September 3, 2020
August 30, 2020
August 28 2020
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August 20, 2020
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July 23, 2020
July 16, 2020
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May 28, 2020
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