India, it is often said, is not a country but a continent. From north to south and east to west, the people are different, the languages are different, and the country is different. Much of India’s fascination perhaps lies in the fact that it is both a young nation and an ancient country rolled into one where past and present co-exist in a beautiful mosaic. India’s economy has performed well in recent years has enjoyed turbocharged double digit growth between 2004 and 2008, largely due to continued global demand for business processing, IT, telecoms and manufacturing.
Leading Indian enterprises are also spearheading a new wave of investment around the globe with the likes of Tata and Mittal leading the way, and by 2025, it is estimated the country could have more than 580m middleclass consumers. However, India’s economy remains mostly agricultural. The caste system limits economic mobility, parts of the country are cut off from the benefits of free trade, and limits on foreign direct investment make growing businesses difficult. India is an enticing place with vast economic potential but much of its growth will be down to government’s policy.