The Straits Times (ST) published an article yesterday (13 Apr) saying that improving business climate in India is drawing Singaporean firms to invest in India.
In the article, ST interviewed Mr Tay Lian Chew who is the Global Markets Director for South Asia at Enterprise Singapore, a statutory board under the Trade and Industry Ministry (MTI) run by Minister Chan Chun Sing.
Tay told ST that he sees opportunities for Singapore companies to invest in sectors such as e-commerce, lifestyle, food and data analytics in India, apart from collaboration with Indian firms in manufacturing, finance and healthcare.
“Singapore companies with innovative solutions, relevant expertise and unique value propositions can capture opportunities in a few selected sectors. These include e-commerce, lifestyle and food, sustainability, smart technologies and manufacturing sectors,” he said.
He added that Enterprise Singapore has helped 40 companies tie up with Indian partners.
In the article, ST also featured Singapore e-waste management service provider Vans Chemistry, which signed an agreement with the Tamil Nadu government last October to set up an e-waste management facility and a precious metals refining project.
The investment is estimated to be between S$9 million and S$11 million, and can help create 600 jobs in Tamil Nadu.
Mr Venkatesha Murthy, the firm’s managing director, told ST, “Companies with the right technology and global experience can bring a lot to the table. Our advantage, being a Singapore-based company, is that our partners trust us to deliver on what we promise.”
According to Murthy’s Linkedin information, he has an impressive education with 3 Master’s degrees:
- M.Tech from Karnataka Regional Engineering College (KREC) in Karnataka state of India
- M.Sc in from Manipal Institute of Technology in Karnataka state of India
- MBA from Angila Ruskin University in UK
Govt says CECA benefits Singapore
Indeed, Singapore firms now have easier access to the Indian market thanks to the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) signed between India and Singapore in 2005
On the government website, it said, “CECA has facilitated the increase in economic interaction between India and Singapore. Our companies’ investments into India has increased from $1.3 billion in 2005 to $48.5 billion in 2017, while India’s investments into Singapore have increased from $1.3 billion in 2005 to $20.2 billion in 2017.”
“Singapore exporters and investors benefit from the increased business opportunities through enhanced access to the Indian market: their success and expansion enable them to create more good jobs for Singaporeans. Indian investments in Singapore similarly create good jobs for Singaporeans that would otherwise have gone elsewhere,” it added.
“Since CECA was signed in 2005, the total number of local employed PMETs has grown by more than 400,000. Local PMETs have also seen their real wages grown, from 0.6%p.a. before CECA to 1.9% in 2020.”
However, under CECA, it does confer certain benefits to citizens working in each other’s country. For example, Singapore now bars intra-corporate transferees from bringing in family members to Singapore but those from India under CECA are exempted.