Essential Reads | Running With The Dragon: How India should do Business with China

Editor | Politics
What drives China’s international trade surplus, which was $351 billion in 2018, while India ended the 2018-19 financial year with trade deficit of $103 billion?
Are there lessons to learn from the manner Chinese companies have grown tenfold or more in their home markets, and pushed away competitors of all hues in the US, Europe, Asia and Africa?
Are we in India ready to learn and seize new opportunities as part of the overall objective to become a $5-trillion economy?
The Chinese invest hugely in understanding foreign cultures and markets while basking in the knowledge that their competitors and would-be allies are unlikely to make sufficient effort to understand them. This is one reason why Chinese manufacturers have broken into the Indian market, making brands like Xiaomi, Haier, Huawei, ZTE, and Lenovo household names in major cities. Hardly any Indian product, with the exception of Tata Motors’ Jaguar, seen primarily as a British brand, has gained a foothold in China.
However, huge opportunities exist and it is possible to both compete and collaborate with the Chinese on our own terms. Entrepreneurs like Rajendra S. Pawar, chairman of NIIT, have shown the way, spending years learning the Chinese way of doing business, going on to establish IT teaching facilities in nearly a hundred universities and institutions in China. Some Indian pharmaceutical companies are also making their mark in China.
Running with the Dragon seeks answers about what Chinese companies are likely to do next to expand in the Indian market under different scenarios. Things are likely to change as the government is keen on removing stumbling blocks for Chinese investments amidst a decelerating economy. Indian businesses in different sectors will have to decide if they want to fight the new competition or collaborate with rivals. The book reflects the experience of over forty Indian and Chinese businesspeople, officials and experts besides the author’s own analysis.
About the author
Saibal Dasgupta has enjoyed a ringside view of major political and business changes in China during his work as a journalist in Beijing since 2005. He spent the previous three years working in Hong Kong and Singapore. He has worked as the China correspondent of The Times of India for over a dozen years besides writing for Voice of America and contributing to BBC’s Hindi and Urdu services. He also contributes research on China to think-tanks. He earlier represented several international publications including Asiamoney and Euromoney from Hong Kong and Singapore. In India, he has worked for the The Indian Express, The Statesman and Business Standard in New Delhi, Kolkata, Lucknow and Ahmedabad.

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