An Ernst and Young survey, “Ready, Set, Grow: EY’s 2015 India Attractiveness Survey,” released on November 23 indicates that investor and other business interest in India has been on the rise. EY held a news conference at its Silicon Valley-based office with dozens of Indian American businessmen and businesswomen in attendance to reveal an upward trend of people doing business in the country. The survey also showed an increase in investor interest.
More than 500 decision-makers from multinational organizations across various business sectors took part in the survey, which was conducted in March and April this year. EY took an “inside-out and outside-in” approach, with roughly half of those surveyed residing in India and the other half split amongst the United States, Europe and Asia.
Among the 500-plus business leaders, 32 percent said that India is the most attractive investment destination in the world. From the 2014 survey, EY said there were major gains in perception in a number of key areas, including macroeconomic stability, political and social stability, relaxation in the foreign direct investment policy and the government’s efforts to ease doing business.
Most of the investors polled – 89 percent – said that investment in infrastructure and the 100 Smart Cities project would be significant reforms that would drive growth. The election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the implementation on reforms such as Make in India and Digital India have directly led to the optimism.
International tax services leader of EY India Jayesh Sanghvi, who conducted an in-depth presentation on the survey’s findings, said, “There is a progressive increase in confidence.”
“These are very interesting times for us in India,” he added. “Things are changing almost on a daily basis.”
Sanghvi concluded his presentation by stressing the importance for the Indian government to continue to get the message out so investors can be confident in putting their money into India.
“If you are aware of new policies and reforms, you are more confident than if you are not aware,” he said of investors’ mindsets. But Sanghvi is confident that the future is clear in India, concluding, “You can debate the pace of change, but there is no doubt that India is changing.”
In addition to the presentation on the findings of the survey, Indian American business dignitaries Nagraj Kashyap, senior vice president of ventures and innovation in North America at Qualcomm; Pankaj Patel, executive vice president and chief development officer at Cisco; and former TiE Silicon Valley president Vish Mishra led a panel discussion on India’s attractiveness in business. Consul General of India in San Francisco Venkatesan Ashok kicked off the program with an update on India’s programs and reforms.