India projects it will spend S$40.4 billion in 99 Indian cities under its Smart Cities Mission (SCM). This is an urban renewal initiative by India’s government to transform the cities through major development and infrastructure projects.
Besides SCM funding, the cities can also tap funding from other Pan-India initiatives. These include the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) for physical infrastructure, Swachh Bharat for clean technologies, and Digital India for connectivity to supplement their Smart City goals.
These initiatives offer many opportunities for Singapore businesses in areas such as building affordable homes, urban solutions and new railway corridors. You can consider pursuing opportunities on a project basis or through loose consortiums to increase your value proposition.
In addition, Singapore is helping the state of Andhra Pradesh develop its new capital city, Amaravati, and working with the states of Assam, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh to develop skills centres. Your company can join these efforts and pilot urban solutions in Amaravati before expanding to other parts of India.
Besides Andhra Pradesh, Singapore is planning and developing urban infrastructure and the new airport in the Indian city of Pune in Maharashtra state.
With these projects, there are myriad opportunities for you to provide energy, environment, information and communications technology, building and governance solutions to the Indian market.
Check out the projects available in the Smart Cities Mission market.
Read what Mr Timothy Sun, Enterprise Singapore Regional Director based in Chennai, India, has to say about opportunities for Singapore companies in India’s smart cities.
The Indian consumer market is poised to become the world’s third largest consumer market by 20251. The Indian government estimates that India’s retail industry will reach US$1.1 trillion (S$1.5 trillion) by 2020, up from US$672 billion (S$907 billion) in 2017.
A youthful demographic and rising disposable income are largely driving this trend. The growing affluence of India’s middle class, coupled with rapid urbanisation, has led to greater demand for good quality shopping malls, consumer products and lifestyle services. In particular, young and increasingly sophisticated Indian consumers are seeking foreign brands and imported consumer goods.
Rising consumer demand will in turn boost e-commerce sales. Singapore companies specialising in e-commerce and online retailing can ride on this trend. Online retail is expected to be on par with physical stores in the next five years (2019-2023), and Indian e-commerce sales are expected to reach US$120 billion (S$162 billion) by 20202. With the growth in cross-border e-commerce, there are opportunities for your company to meet the demand for goods and services.
India consumers have leapfrogged the desktop generation to access the internet through smart mobile devices. This presents another business opportunity for Singapore companies as users in India prefer to access the internet through their mobiles nearly 80% of the time3. The country has 530 million smartphone users, which is the second highest number of smartphone users in the world after China4. India’s smartphone penetration is likely to continue growing with the government’s role in raising digital literacy and enhancing internet penetration.
If you have a business in food services, fashion retail, lifestyle products and services, India is a market you should consider. There is first-mover advantage for Singapore companies that seize opportunities early in India’s consumer market boom.
To ease your entry into this vast consumer market, consider alternative methods such as franchising or joint ventures to leverage local networks.
Check out how Shopmatic discovered the key to unlock India’s consumer market.
As the third largest startup ecosystem in the world with 5,200 startups, India is an attractive location for entrepreneurs and investors.
A key attraction is the country’s 1.3 billion population that is growing at 7% per annum, along with growing consumer demand. The country’s growth as a technology hub, fuelled by an abundance of English-speaking technology workers, as well as the booming smartphone adoption and internet penetration mean that India is an ideal testbed for your products and solutions.
These factors have attracted generous funding for startups in India. The country received a record investment of US$13.7 billion (S$18.5 billion) in 2017, up from US$4.06 billion (S$5.5 billion) in 2016.
The government recognises that startups are critical to helping India achieve its goal of a US$8 trillion (S$10.8 trillion) economy by 2030. This has resulted in strong support for new companies with the Stand-Up India campaign to support entrepreneurship among women and disadvantaged groups in India.
If you want to invest in startups or have a startup in the areas of e-commerce, fintech, healthtech or edutech, do consider the many opportunities in the Indian startup market.
The manufacturing sector contributes about 17% of India’s GDP5. India aims to raise this to 25% by 20226 and create 100 million new jobs in this sector.
The Indian government is actively promoting manufacturing in India through flagship programmes such as “Make in India”. Under this initiative, India has identified 23 key sectors for manufacturing, including automobiles, food processing, electronic systems, chemicals and pharmaceuticals.
Key industrial corridors such as the planned Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor will provide convenient and well-connected bases for the expanding manufacturing sector.
If you are thinking of starting manufacturing operations in India, begin by simply trading with the country first, to better understand how your products will be received in the market. Manufacturing in India presents opportunities for Singapore businesses to produce for export as well.
Find out more about manufacturing in India.
As the world’s fourth largest producer and consumer of electricity, India represents a rich market for firms in the energy sector. About 15% of the population7 still have no access to electricity in 2016, due to a lack of capacity coupled with transmission losses.
Renewable energy is a particular focus for the country, which aims to generate an additional 175 gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy by 2022, of which 100 GW will come from solar power. By 2022, India hopes to generate a total 225 GW of renewable energy8.
As part of its energy push, India has introduced incentives such as a 10-year tax exemption for solar energy projects and allowing 100% foreign direct investment for power sector projects.
If you have a business in the energy sector and wish to bring it to India, count on growth in key segments such as transmission and distribution, smart grid technologies, renewable energy and energy efficiency.