Indian subcontinent needs significant infrastructure investment to match economic growth forecasts
Ports, shipping and logistics development across India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka will form a key topic of debate at the upcoming TOC Middle East conference.
India’s economy is at the threshold of a “golden age of growth”, with the potential to grow the fastest among the BRIC countries over the next 30-50 years. Goldman Sachs’ economists predict that in terms of gross size, the Indian economy will overtake Italy in 2015, France in 2020, Germany in 2023 and Japan by 2032. The fact that the country’s merchandise trade intensity (trade as a percentage of GDP) is still below 30 percent indicates significant untapped growth potential.
The UAE and India are already each other's biggest trading partners, with bilateral trade between the two countries in 2011-12 worth US$67 billion, driven in part by the UAE’s role as a regional and global transport conduit. This is part of the bigger picture of fast-growing trade both with the Middle East and Africa (MEA). India's exports to MEA today are worth more than the country’s total global exports just 10 years ago and are an increasingly high priority on the political and business agenda.
With 90 percent by volume and 70 percent by value of India’s international trade moving by sea, development of the country’s ports will be critical. As India’s rate of containerisation is currently only around 25 percent, versus the global average of 60-70 percent, demand for new container port and inland transport infrastructure is forecast to be particularly strong.
“The shipping and ports sector in India needs to develop rapidly to keep pace with Indian trade and to act as a catalyst in economic growth,” said Shailesh Garg, director at industry consultants Drewry, who will be among the speakers at TOC CSC Middle East.
“In order to realise this growth potential, the government of India is encouraging the private sector to come forward in developing port activities and operations.”
TOC Container Supply Chain Middle East comprises of an executive-level conference, free to attend technical seminars, trade exhibition and networking functions.
The event, supported by DP World, runs from December 9th – 11th at the Dubai World Trade Centre. Now celebrating its 3rd annual edition in Dubai, TOC CSC Middle East attracts over 300 delegates and a further 1,000 visitors to the exhibition.