Exhibits show daily necessities from India at an expo in Yiwu, East China's Zhejiang Province, in June 2015. Photo: IC
Exhibits show daily necessities from India at an expo in Yiwu, East China’s Zhejiang Province, in June 2015. Photo: IC

Despite a slowdown in its economic growth, China still “opens up the whole world of business” to Indian businessmen with the country’s mature business environment and huge market, several Indian entrepreneurs in China told the Global Times recently.

An expert also noted on Saturday that the opportunities for economic cooperation between China and India are ample.

Charanjeet Singh Arora, an Indian businessman who set up Wishtel Pvt Ltd – a Shenzhen-based company that provides tablet computers for special projects – in 2010, said that he chose to locate his business in China because the country, being the hub of raw material manufacturing and home to lots of electronic design houses, makes it easy for his company to get effective solutions.

“The environment in Shenzhen provides a lot of ease in terms of logistics, export benefits, skilled manpower, electricity and good infrastructure,” he told the Global Times on Tuesday.

He said that his company generates revenue of about 340,000 yuan ($51,000) each month, with a profit of about 10 percent.

Ravi Shankar Bose, another Indian entrepreneur, set up mobile marketing agency Fugumobile in Shanghai around 2006. He said that the business environment of China provides convenience for overseas investors like him, and opportunities are ample in the Chinese market.

“The process of setting up a company in China was quite smooth. We started the company within 45 days or so,” he said, adding that as far as his industry is concerned, he has not seen any kind of discrimination between foreign and local companies in China.

But China has also provided challenges for Indian entrepreneurs.

“The largest challenge comes from the fact that the cost of doing business has gone up a lot in the past few years in China,” Bose noted.

He also said that his company faces increasing competition from domestic companies, though this is not necessarily a bad thing as competition leads to new technologies and solutions as well as innovation.

Although China’s economic growth is slowing, the Indian entrepreneurs said this hasn’t deterred Indian businessmen from exploring the Chinese market.

In 2015, Indian investment to China reached $80.8 million, up about 60 percent from the previous year, data from the Ministry of Commerce showed.

According to the Embassy of India in Beijing, there are about 100 Indian companies in China and the industries they invest in mainly cover areas such as pharmaceuticals, information technology and trade.

“The economy of every country goes up and down. A good businessman is one who can survive the thunderstorm … I think China itself is a world market and with its huge population it will be a healthy economy forever,” Arora said.

Rupesh Jha Egam, chief representative of Indian company Jindal Steel & Power Ltd in China, also noted that when China’s economy turns down, Indian investors should change their strategy accordingly. Jindal, for example, has shifted its business focus in China from procurement and sales to searching for opportunities such as cross-collaboration, financing and technologies.

According to Bose, China’s business environment is unique and fast-changing. Overseas companies entering China need time to digest and adapt to the domestic business environment.

“On the whole, I think the number of Indian companies is growing in terms of those that come to invest in the Chinese market,” Bose noted.

He also told the Global Times on September 28 that in general, the Chinese government has done well in attracting Indian investors to China, but the government should put more focus on attracting smaller Indian businesses to come to China and invest in its market.

A statement issued by China’s National Development and Reform Commission showed that government officials from China and India agreed that both countries should strengthen cooperation in areas like infrastructure and energy at the Fourth India-China Strategic Economic Dialogue, which was held on Friday in New Delhi.

Li Qin, a Chinese legal counsel with the India-based law firm D.H. Law Associates, also said that India has “highlights” in certain industries like banking and cars, and the Indian government has also taken measures to stimulate the country’s economic growth.

“In the next 20 years, I believe there will be ample space for cooperation between China and India,” Li told the Global Times on Saturday.