Future Generali

How should the government maintain balance between economic liberalization and national sovereignty?

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Rakesh Wadhwa:

In India How should the Government balance between economic liberalization and national sovereignty given that there is an opportunity now for global supply chains to be reoriented and this could be an opportunity for India. So how do you think this will pan out for us as a country and how should governments be responding to this situation?

 

Rishad Tobaccowala:

So I'm going to use the first one word for this which is called optionality. So one of the things I always advise people is we're living in a world as we know which is constantly changing and has lots of shocks and excitement. And so to great extent you want to basically not have one answer, one silver bullet but you want options. India as a country by itself is bigger than most countries gathered together. So India is a very complicated basically country and so there are some unique and amazing new things that have to be very specific to India. On the other hand India's growth between 1990 and now has been primarily driven in great part because of globalization. In great part because of both the ability to export including the Infosys and Wipro etc of the world, open to globalization which is to a certain extent make no mistake. Yes China basically has Tencent and Alibaba and we're going to try to create our JIO and everything else, but there is a reason that Indians are permeated all over the world. It's because we are working on global operating systems. Unless India balances both and if it turns to any particular extreme I don't think India will succeed. Which is India just becomes it's all about globalization and all about wealth creation.

Right now the concern for India is the other way. Which is a lot of countries today are becoming more nationalistic. And that is the thing to a certain extent disturbs me because the reality of it is no country is so important that the rest of the world needs it. And you're going to see that you're going to see people that detour outbox of China. And when you see that, make no mistake, if the world is far more invested in supply chains and a whole bunch of stuff in China than it is in India. And if they're starting to detour and I see this in boardrooms people are really starting to think Hey these people are giving us trouble. What do we do? And they've got much more at risk. So that's the key thing not to basically get so jingoistic about India. At some particular stage recognize when this becomes politics vs reality.

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