The survey demonstrates the increasing confidence of a country boasting an exploding technology sector the second largest population in the world after China.
It’s also potentially good news for British entrepreneurs because the two countries’ shared history has created synergies in their economies, while a growing number of UK firms are partnering with Indian counterparts.
Two-thirds of respondents to the survey of 2,400 owner-managers and aspiring entrepreneurs believe Indians are more entrepreneurial than other nations, including their future superpower rivals China.
Nine in 10 said they expected the country to be in a stronger position within five years while just a handful said growth had been adversely affected by the world economic downturn.
The survey, commissioned by think tank the Legatum Institute, showed that 53 per cent of entrepreneurs thought India would become the biggest world economy by 2030.
Total Indian GDP has risen 193 per cent in the past decade, from $416bn in 1998 to $1.22trn in 2008. The country is now on course to outstrip the US, Japan, Germany and the fast-emerging economic giant of China over the next two decades.
Just over a third (36 per cent) of respondents said that the country’s entrepreneurial spirit was rooted in the family. Nearly half the respondents (48 per cent) said they had relied on money from relations to found their firms.
No wonder Indians are optimistic…
• India’s automobile industry is one of the fastest growing in the world, boasting exports greater in number than China.
• India is one of the world’s leading outsourcing destinations for many of the world’s top businesses, with annual revenues of nearly $60bn.
• It is home to a $52bn textile manufacturing sector.
• Mumbai is a recognised global financial centre.
• India is also a world leader in innovation from ultra-inexpensive cars to pioneering computer software.
But the survey does reveal grounds for caution about India’s economic future. Over half of the respondents say that corruption is a serious problem that hurts business in India, and 40 percent say they have been pressured to pay a bribe.