Are there lessons to learn from the manner Chinese companies have grown tenfold or more in their home markets, and pushed away competitors of all hues in the US, Europe, Asia and Africa? What drives China’s international trade surplus, which was $351 billion in 2018, while India ended the 2018-19 financial year with trade deficit of $103 billion? Are we in India ready to learn and seize new opportunities as part of the overall objective to become a $5-trillion economy?
The Chinese invest hugely in understanding foreign cultures and markets while basking in the knowledge that their competitors and would-be allies are unlikely to make sufficient effort to understand them. This is one reason why Chinese manufacturers have broken into the Indian market, making brands like Xiaomi, Haier, Huawei, ZTE, and Lenovo household names in major cities. Hardly any Indian product, with the exception of Tata Motors’ Jaguar, seen primarily as a British brand, has gained a foothold in China.