Once in a while, a nation rallies behind an idea so powerful that it redefines its trajectory and alters the world’s economic axis. Launched in September 2014, the “Make in India” initiative is the nation’s aspiration to become a global manufacturing hub.
This initiative’s objectives are multifaceted but centred around one core ambition: transforming India into a global manufacturing hub, fostering innovation, enhancing skill development, and building top-notch manufacturing infrastructure.
This signals an unparalleled opportunity for the budding entrepreneur or a keen SME, ensuring the nation isn’t just a market for global entities but also a crucible where world-class products are created.
In this blog, let’s delve deeper into the scope of business and investment opportunities sculpted by “Make in India” products– unveiling the immense potential that awaits.
Scope of Make-In-India Products: An Overview
1. Leather Products
India’s legacy in leather craftsmanship hails from ancient traditions passed down through generations. Today, India’s leather industry has a considerable market size, confident by global exports spanning countries and continents.
But what’s even more promising is the contemporary shift towards sustainable practices. Indian manufacturers are adopting eco-friendly techniques in leather processing, ensuring that the goods are both high-quality and environmentally conscious.
2. Herbal Products
When it comes to Ayurveda and herbal traditions, India is an epicentre. These ancient practices, cultivated over the years, cater to a growing global appetite for natural and holistic products. Recognising this demand, Indian herbal manufacturers are not just focusing on local markets but expanding their horizons internationally, promoting the Make-In-India initiative.
3. Fashion and Fine Jewellery
Jewellery crafting, more than a business, is an art form steeped in history and culture in India. As fashion evolves, Indian jewellery designers stay ahead of the curve, set global trends, and ensure their creations are both sustainable and ethically sourced. This blend of ancient craft with modern sensibilities makes Indian jewellery a sought-after choice worldwide.
India’s foray into the toy industry caters to local demands, envisioning a global manufacturing hub under the Make-In-India initiative. India is gearing up to compete on the world stage with an emphasis on using eco-friendly materials and integrating innovative designs.
Collaborations with renowned global toy brands can further bolster the industry, making ‘Made in India’ toys a common sight in households worldwide.
5. Cloth & Apparel
The textile landscape of India is as varied as its culture. From the fine silks of the south to the handloom fabrics of the north, the country offers an array of choices that cater to global fashion palettes.
With the global fashion industry moving towards sustainability, India’s eco-friendly textiles are finding greater acceptance. Furthermore, collaborations with international fashion houses are amplifying the reach of Indian fabrics, setting global trends in the process.
India’s tea gardens, stretching across its eastern expanse, are the source of some of the world’s finest teas. Whether it’s the black or green tea variants, Indian teas are a staple for tea lovers globally.
7. Automotive Accessories
India’s automotive industry is on an upward trajectory, so the demand for high-quality automotive accessories is soaring. With trends leaning towards smart automotive accessories, Indian manufacturers are innovating to meet global standards and empowering Make-In-India.
8. Organic and Processed Food Products
India’s diverse agricultural backdrop is ripe for a revolution in organic farming. The nation’s culinary favourites globally are spices, snacks, and ready-to-eat meals. As the world moves towards healthier and sustainable eating habits, Indian producers are emphasizing quality and health standards, ensuring that their offerings are tasty and wholesome.
Major Challenges & Solutions for the “Make in India” Initiative
1. China’s Dominant Position and Competition
The rise of China as the world’s manufacturing hub has been meticulously planned through an export-oriented policy backed by massive governmental support. This systematic backing has allowed Chinese manufacturers a significant cost advantage, posing stiff competition to their Indian counterparts.
Rather than directly competing in a head-to-head battle, India must boast a vast consumer market and a highly skilled workforce, both of which are pivotal for the success of the “Make in India” campaign.
2. Global Competition and India’s Unique Proposition
The global manufacturing landscape isn’t just a two-player field. Countries like Taiwan and Russia have also upped their game, amplifying global competition.
They come equipped with their own set of competitive advantages. However, India’s true strength lies in its demographic dividend – a young, dynamic workforce ready to drive the wheels of the economy. Coupled with the middle class, whose purchasing power is steadily rising, the potential is enormous.
3. Addressing Perceptions of Corruption and Environmental Issues
Although it is not talked about openly, the shadows of corruption have often clouded India’s potential, with the nation not faring particularly well in global rankings. Environmental challenges, including rising pollution levels, can also be a significant roadblock to the Make-in-India initiative.
The remedy lies in fortifying institutional frameworks and stringent law enforcement. Also, India can’t afford to turn a blind eye to environmental challenges. The way forward is to adopt sustainable and eco-friendly policies while raising public awareness about the same.
4. Infrastructure Challenges: Land Acquisition, Water, and Energy Resources
Any robust manufacturing setup requires a strong backbone of infrastructure. However, India often grapples with land acquisition issues, which can deter potential investors. Moreover, water scarcity and inconsistent energy supply challenges add to the woes.
Therefore, a more streamlined and transparent land acquisition process can instil confidence in investors. The government can further sweeten the deal by encouraging public-private partnerships focused on infrastructure development.
5. Lack of proper logistics infrastructure
The importance of a robust and streamlined logistics infrastructure cannot be overstated whenever we speak about envisioning India as the global manufacturing hub. And it is very disheartening to see that India lacks it. In India, approx. 98% of freight transportation depends on 16% of the network. Freight trains in India, the lifeline of Indian logistics, carry goods at an average speed of 25/km per hour, significantly affecting the manufacturing cost and the overall supply chain.
Are we doing anything to solve this? Yes, we are. To speed up the movement of goods and build a robust logistics infrastructure, the government has initiated several policies, like dedicated freight corridor, National Logistics Policy, and ULIP, to boost Indian logistics.
There are also private logistics players like NimbusPost, which offer technology-driven platforms to businesses for comprehensive logistical support, like international shipping, domestic shipping, freight forwarding, warehousing and fulfilment, and much more.
Key Strategies for Entrepreneurs and SMEs in Leveraging “Make in India”
Local Understanding Coupled with Global Standards
With its rich tapestry of cultures, traditions, and histories, India offers unparalleled craftsmanship that can be leveraged in global markets.
Entrepreneurs need to understand the essence of Indian manufacturing, be it the handlooms of Varanasi or the age-old Ayurvedic formulations of Kerala. But while retaining this essence, it’s equally vital to meet the quality and safety standards expected by international markets.
Role of Research and Development for Product Differentiation
Innovation remains at the heart of differentiation. Investing in Research and Development (R&D) is necessary for SMEs aiming for global outreach. The innovations birthed from R&D allow businesses to stay ahead of competitors.
India always provided a conducive environment for such endeavors. Successful brands often have a strong R&D backing, enabling them to offer unique solutions in saturated markets.
Networking and Collaborations for Expanding Reach
No business thrives in isolation. Building robust relationships with international distributors and retailers becomes crucial for SMEs eyeing the global market. Participating actively in global trade fairs and exhibitions can help showcase their products’ uniqueness while building brand visibility.
Financial Planning and Risk Management
Global expansion, while lucrative, brings its own set of financial challenges. Understanding the dynamics of foreign exchange, global economic indicators, and potential tariffs is essential.
Crafting a financial plan that is robust yet flexible and accommodates the nuances of international business is imperative.
The “Make in India” initiative is a clarion call, echoing India’s prowess and potential in the global arena. As we’re in the conclusion, it’s evident that the Indian market, brimming with innovation, offers a golden ticket for entrepreneurs and SMEs.
So, to every entrepreneur starting their export-import business and every SME owner, here’s your moment. Seize these opportunities, be a part of India’s economic renaissance, and etch your legacy in this “Make in India” narrative.
Bonus tip: if you want to export your Make-In-India products outside, here is the full guide on exporting from India.
What are the Indian brands in the global market?
Several Indian brands have made a significant mark on the global stage. Some notable names include Infosys, ITC, Tata Group, Peter England, Wipro, TCS, Dabur India, Bajaj Auto, Van Heusen, Amul, Mahindra & Mahindra, and Allen Solly. These brands span various industries, from IT to automobiles to textiles, showcasing India’s diverse business landscape globally.
What makes India an attractive market for international brands?
India is an alluring destination for international brands due to its robust domestic market, highly skilled workforce, and an increasingly open regulatory environment. These factors offer global companies the perfect blend to expand and achieve sustainable business success in the region.
Which product is manufactured most in India?
The most manufactured export product from India is petroleum, valued at 61.2 billion dollars.