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  • inchin leadersAs rightly put by Shivshankar Menon, India’s former national security adviser,  the relationship between India and China is clearly under stress. “We need to find a new equilibrium between elements we’ve always been juggling — economic competition and complementarity, and strategic sensitivities” – he told the Financial Times.

    The sweet and sour neighbours, China and India have recently been at loggerheads over several issues which are gaining heightened importance as both stalwart heads of state, Prime Minister Modi and President Xi take charge of their bilateral affairs. The buzzword is that over a slew of meetings scheduled in the next 3 months, both leaders are expected to iron out their differences and tango more in complement with each other.

    The first visit on August 12 was by Wang Yi, China’s foreign minister to New Delhi. The aim of the meeting was to lay the communication groundwork before the upcoming G20 Summit in Hangzhou, China and the BRICS Summit in Goa, India. In other wards, it was Mr. Wang’s agenda to make sure India doesn’t stoke dissent against the South China Sea dispute. During his visit, Mr. Wang met Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and the Governor and Chief Minister of Goa.

    Chinese state councillor and former foreign minister Yang Jiechi, who is Beijing’s designated special representative for border negotiations is also expected to visit India soon to quell tensions that have arisen with Beijing’s unilateral support of Pakistan. The flourishing friendship between India’s tense neighbours – China and Pakistan has created a strong rift in India China relations. With China asserting her infrastructural and investment muscle in Pakistan. Mr. Yang will need to come with a strong strategy if the two nations are going to support each other in the upcoming meetings.

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  • medical-tourism-in-india-swarna-18-638The Indian medical tourism industry is about see to high levels of adrenaline as patients from China increasingly look to their Southern neighbour for cheap medical drugs, high quality treatment and professional doctors.

    According to a report by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce (Ficci) and KPMG accounting firm in September 2014, India has become the world’s fastest-growing medical tourism market receiving more than 230,000 medical tourism visitors, mostly from the West. India’s medical tourism market is expected to more than double in size from US$ 3 billion at present to around US$ 8 billion by 2020, according to a CII – Grant Thornton white paper.

    Almost 80 years after Dr. Kotnis went to China in a humble mission to help injured Chinese soliders, many Indian hospitals, Inchin Closer is talking to – are looking at attracting Chinese patients – especially oncology patients. The lure is simple, while oncology treatments costs an arm and a leg in China, the costs are substantially low in India. Take for example, in Russia heart surgery costs US$ 20,000, but it only costs  US$ 6,000 in India. Prices for liver transplants in the United States are more than US$ 200,000, but only US$ 14,000 in India. Robotic knee surgery can cost up to US$ 80,000 in the Middle East and Australia, while in India for just costs US$ 10,000.

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  • gst-mainIn a landmark amendment to the Indian tax regime, India’s upper house or the Rajya Sabha passed the Goods and Services Tax bill which streamlines and simplifies taxes for the entire country. In effect, the GST brings India, a US$2 trillion (£1.5tn) economy with 1.3 billion consumers, into a truly single market. “No country of comparable size and complexity has attempted a tax reform of this scale,” Harishankar Subramanian, of Ernst and Young told the BBC.

    The GST bill which had been pending in parliament for a few years, finally got passed allowing companies to regulate their taxes between India’s 29 states better. The new bill will upgrade India’s tax system on par with 21st Century companies needs, enabling Asia’s third largest economy a strong tax regime going forward. It will therefore ensure businesses can expand nationwide. Freight trucks will now be able to move quickly across India, rather than spending hours idling at multiple checkpoints filling in forms and making tax payments when they travel between states.

    Additionally, the overall tax rate is expected to come down, from its current rates. News reports peg the GST rate at between 15 percent and 18 percent. “If you add all the taxes together, today this is almost 27-32 percent… With GST coming in say at 18-19 percent zone… that is still a difference of 8 percent to 10 percent. Large part of that will eventually get passed on to the customer,” Ashish Goel, co-founder and CEO of online furniture retailer Urban Ladder, told NDTV Profit.

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  • kfcYum Brands is undergoing a strategic shift in China, signaling towards changing market trends and slowing revenue. The brand under which KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell operate decided to spin off its China business into a separate entity last year. As part of the realignment, CEO China of Yum Brands Inc Muktesh Pant sold 91,228 shares of Yum on the 22nd of July, for US$8.2 million.

    The Indian born CEO, of Yum China led the China entity to be the company’s highest profit earner. At the end of February 2016, Yum had over 5,000 KFC restaurants in China, accounting for a quarter of KFC restaurants worldwide. It also held more than 1600 Pizza Huts, in more than 400 cities and had acquired Little Sheep hot pot due to burgeoging demand in the Fast food space.

    However, as tastes changed – being healthy came back into vogue and the the brands faced backlash due to their involvement in International uprisings, the Yum brand faced sever criticism in local media resulting in a fall in revenue. Although China remains the company’s primary source of profit the company’s revenues fell from US$ 6.898 billion in 2012 to US$ 6.909 billion in 2015. The latest performance report shows that in the first half of 2016, Yum clocked revenues of US$ 5.627 billion, down 1.75 percent.cheap bns goldbuy bns gold

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  • cnfdi

    ~By Charmaine Mirza

    Chinese investment in India’s real estate sector increased six-fold in 2015, topping out at approx. US$870 million. The door is still wide open. The Indian government’s decision to allow 100 percent Foreign Direct Investment into the real estate sector has lead to a spike in interest from Chinese investors.

    Haryana has certainly jumped on the bandwagon. Dalian Wanda’s MoU with the Haryana State government to develop the Wanda Industrial New City that spreads over 100 kilometers, has flagged off a trickle of investment from China into India that could turn into a steady stream.

    China Fortune Land Development is also sizing up large-scale industrial park projects in Haryana, while Gezhouba, another real estate player from the mainland, is eyeing an investment in Telengana. Not to be left far behind, Madhya Pradesh is also seeking Chinese help to develop large scale industrial projects, while in the private sector, financing major China Fosun International, is considering investing in Locon Solutions, the owner of housing finance start up, Housing.com.

    So why is there such a sudden gold rush from China into India’s real estate segment?

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  • rio-2016The upcoming Rio Olympics, to be held from from August 5 to 21 will see an exceptional array of Indian and Chinese athletes that will demonstrate both nations growing emphasis on sport. While China will outshine India in taking home more medals, the increase in India’s delegation from 84 to 120 athletes, will hopefully bode her better than previous years.

    For nations that prioritise academics over athletics, China and India have not only increased the number of delegates representing their country, but have also widened the events they are participating in. This shows that both nations are emphasizing on developing sport – a sign of a nations growth as she rises above basic developing nation issues of education, sanitation and housing. While neither nation is completely above any of these problems, the ability to simultaneously focus on sport signals both China and India are moving towards a more developed, well rounded and balanced society and economy.

    The Chinese delegation includes 416 athletes, more than 3 times the Indian delegation of 120 delegates. In their 10th appearance at the Summer Olympics since China’s debut in 1952,  160 Chinese men and 256 Chinese women, who will compete in 210 events across 26 sports. China is expected to excel in Badminton, Basketball, Table Tennis, Diving, Swimming, Weightlifting, Shoooting and Gymnastics. China won the second largest number of medals at the 2012 London Olympics after the United States, 88 medals in total – 38 gold, 29 silver, and 21 bronze.

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  • ukchina

    ~ by Charmaine Mirza

    The United Kingdom’s Brexit vote to leave the European Union has hard-hitting implications on both China and India. While the true impact will be felt only in the years to come, Inchin Closer peers into the future to see what lies ahead for the diamond and ruby of the British Empire.

    CURRENCY CRUNCH: The Reserve Bank of India feels that the INR is adequately buffered against the GBP. London is the second largest RMB trading hub after Hong Kong. If global banks exit London, Beijing may have to scramble for a new base.

    In the long run, a depreciated pound could prove beneficial to savvy investors from both countries, who will swoop in to take advantage of the devaluation.

    INBOUND INVESTMENT: Thus far, both Indian and Chinese companies used the UK as a convenient conduit for unshackled access to the European markets, to circumvent the EU’s protectionist view on global trade. If the UK can no longer serve this purpose, it will certainly impact inbound investment from China and India into the UK.

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  • BATWe live in an interesting investment climate, where India and China can’t either do with or without each other. Cross border investments in online apps and platforms are breaking traditional barriers and creating healthy, profitable companies for both nations.

    For the Indian start-up market to flourish, Chinese investments are important and a vital cog in the wheel that will turn the Indian economy around. For Chinese investors, India is a massive market, similar to theirs, with a huge growth potential. Smell a win-win situation?

    Yet there are hurdles, a lack of political will and diplomatic trust enter at various points in a healthy India-China relationship to often mar the smooth functioning and often put a spanner in the works. However, since there is a strong potential that the bond between India and China will withstand political head winds, Inchin Closer takes a look at the India strategy for the Big 3 Chinese investment heavy weights – Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent – or BAT as they are more commonly referred to. The article aims to demonstrate where these investment bell weathers are now and the direction they are looking at. It is expected to foretell, the direction Chinese investments into India will take and subsequently how the rest will follow.

    ALIBABA: A scion for a variety of low priced goods, Alibaba has recently tied up with Indian payments gateways Paytm to initially allow select Indian Indian sellers to source products from China at cheaper rates as well as help them with logistics and payments. India is an inevitable market for Alibaba for whom a developing market in search of cheap goods is perfect, as compared to Europe. As a result, Alibaba India already has 4.5 million registered users, making it the world’s second largest market for Alibaba after China. Additionally, Alibaba invested US$680 million into Paytm last September making it the largest investor in the mobile payments leader. In October, Alibaba joined softbank to invest US$125 million out of a consolidated investment of US$500 million into Snapdeal an online shopping portal.

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  • NSGcheap bns goldbuy bns gold

    ~ By Charmaine Mirza

    The Asian hotpot is simmering again. India’s bid to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) has put Sino-Indian geopolitics back in focus – this time with the added masala of India’s arch nemesis and China’s ally: Pakistan.

    The Nuclear Suppliers Group is a group of nuclear supplier countries, which aim to stave off nuclear proliferation by monitoring exports of raw materials, equipment and technology that can be deployed to create nuclear weapons.

    China is spearheading strong resistance from a handful of member countries to India’s NSG bid.

    Beijing’s official party line is that India has not signed the Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which is a vital criterion for membership to the NSG.

    The not-so-subtle subtext is that Pakistan has also retaliated to India’s NSG bid with one of its own – and China is the key instigator behind Pakistan’s nuclear program.

    In an ironic twist of fate, India will have to bear the brunt of Pakistan’s poor track record. If Pakistan doesn’t get in, India’s not getting China’s vote.

    If Pakistan has built its nuclear resources from the ground up, it is largely due to the fact that China has supported it consistently, in gross violation of its own commitment to the NSG. Given Pakistan’s dubious track record of harbouring terrorists (it hasn’t signed the NPT either) and the fact that the father of its nuclear program sold nuclear technology and secrets to Iran and North Korea, red flags are waving madly across the globe about its acceptance into the NSG.

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  • herbal-formula-2

    ~ By Charmaine Mirza

    Indian pharmaceuticals have been trying to enter the Chinese market for a while. Priced cheaper than drugs available on the Mainland, Indian pharma companies have always been kept at bay for fear that they may disrupt the industry. However, there might be light at the end of this tunnel. Shanghai based Fosun Pharmaceuticals has recently emerged as the billion-dollar bidder for India’s KKR backed Gland Pharma, outstripping US-based Baxter and Advent, as it aims to increase its research and manufacturing prowess.

    As China gets old before she gets rich, the pharmaceutical industry is now waking up to partnering with Indian drug companies to benefit their billion plus populations and avoid a healthcare meltdown.

    Both ancient nations have their medical advantages –

    –       China and India supply much of the world (and the same pharma multi-nationals) with their APIs (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients) and generics.

    –       The roots of modern medicine lie in two ancient systems – Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda.

    So who really wields the whip in this pharmaceutical circus? Inchin Closer pauses to examine the larger picture.

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