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'Britain Should Treat India Differently' Says G.P. Hinduja

Monday, April 20, 2015
By A Business Reporter

Co- Chairman of Hinduja Group Worldwide expresses confidence in the India growth story and predicts its meteoric rise to being an economic powerhouse.

In a rare and free wheeling interview to a major British television channel, G.P. Hinduja, the Co- Chairman of Hinduja Group Worldwide espoused the cause of India and the need for Britain to treat it differently from other Asian economies. “Somehow when British policies are made they are Asia policies. How can you compare the policies made for the neighboring countries to India, which is so different and beyond any of them?? India has to be treated independently”, he said.

Drawing upon insights gained from his experience of managing a US$ 25 billion worldwide conglomerate,  Hinduja advised the British Government to harness the power of the 1.6 million NRI community that resides in Britain to achieve its export potential. Over the past decade, Britain has been lagging behind in exports to India when compared to other European countries like Germany, France and even the US. “You see Germany has been the largest exporter in the world. They are quite strong in manufacturing, engineering and technology. In my view, Britain has the potential to be the number one exporter to India, but has not leveraged its political or economic relations”. He suggested to the British Government to throw open the gates to all the technologies available in Britain, just like their French, Israeli, And German counterparts. “The NRI’s know India and they can facilitate all economic and political discussions for Britain, which will open the doors for higher exports and more collaboration”, he added.

Speaking on the India story, Hinduja expressed his confidence in the Modi Government. “Mr. Modi’s government has certainly changed the face of India. He has a good vision and is moving in the right direction. But we should not expect things to change overnight. It’s going to take time and we have to have patience”, he said. Appreciating the good work done by the new Government, he added, “This new government is intelligent. They were able to pick on all the weak points and garner a majority. With this absolute majority, good intentions and the vision that Mr. Modi has, India now has created a good environment for investments. I’m hopeful now India’s face will change”.

G.P. Hinduja stressed upon the need to move fast and to continue the good work. Complimenting the direction of the economy and the business environment, he poignantly remarked, “Earlier, India was going out to showcase itself to other countries. Today other countries come to India to showcase themselves. I want to alert India that if they lose this opportunity and they are not ready at home, then this opportunity would be lost. India is well on its way to become the 3rd or 4th largest economy in the world”, he added.

When asked about the Group’s plans for the iconic Churchill’s old War Office building, Hinduja shared his plans “At one time, it used to be the war office, that Churchill used to run. My vision is to convert this into a ‘peace’ building where rich and poor can come and visit. The aim is to create something unique in London so that every British national is proud of it and each and every visitor who comes to London enjoys it”.

Answering a query related to the state of real estate in the UK, he felt that this was a passing phase brought about due to economic and political uncertainty. “At the moment, the property prices are flat. There is not much buying or selling, because there is uncertainty. Once that gets cleared, again a new life will come in property”, he said.

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