Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Rivalry Between India And China Exists Even In Diamond Industry

Everyday, I come across either in print or electronic media some news or the other about China's supremacy over India. The whole world is watching almost in total disbelief as both China and India are racing like Phoenix - the mythical bird in the Arabian desert rising again from the ashes to become second and third biggest economy. In every public platform and discussions, it is now routine to highlight the widening gap in various fields of industry and business of the two nations. I think we are harping on it wrongly as India should try to remove its own deficiencies to improve rather than lamenting all the time about its poor performance in comparison with China.
The latest news about rivalry between India and China came from a survey report of the global consulting firm KPMG which was released by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council. It has made a disappointing projection for India that diamond processing industry in which it had a lion's share would be reduced from its present 57% to 49% by 2015 - a drop of 8% in value terms. It goes on to say that China will emerge as a strong player with a share of 21.3%. I thought both India and China are poor nations and since jewellery is used by only the rich and the very rich, market shares of these two nations would be insignificant. The figures tell a different story. While USA remained the world's biggest market for jewellery with 31% share in 2005, India and China registered their shares at 8.3% and 8.9% respectively. At least in this particular case of market for jewellery, India and China are running neck and neck.
Let us not forget that China got started with liberalisation and globalisation more than 15 years before India finally made up its mind. The Communist regime in China ensured easy implementation of plans and policies whereas in India its political parties with diverse goals cobble up wafer-thin majorities to rule democratically. So India predictably experiences hiccups off and on in adopting globalisation.
Diamond processing industry provides employment and earns foreign exchange. India must do everything to retain its predominant position.

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