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jeffolie

I totally agree that:

India and the US will be great and mighty allies against Islamic terrorism, Chinese Communism, and leftist multiculturalism. The beginning of this new era starts now.

Two difficulties still remain.

LITERACY AND INFRASTRUCTURE

India's problems are large. It's a country of a billion people, more than a third of whom are illiterate. Some 700 million live on rural land. Technology has infused the economy with capital, but India's top universities produce just 50 computer science Ph.D's a year. Ravi Venkatesan, chairman of Microsoft India, takes the stage. He calls India "an IT superpower that has 300 million illiterate people." India innovates for export, he says. But to assert itself on the world stage for the first time in three centuries, his countrymen must do more. "It's high time we started innovating in India and for India."

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

jeffolie

News Story by Patrick Thibodeau

NOVEMBER 15, 2004 (COMPUTERWORLD) - Taking work offshore may cut costs, but it still comes with a not-so-hidden price. Asian countries, including the No. 1 outsourcing destination, India, have weak or untested intellectual property laws, inefficient courts, and financial and public records mechanisms that make it difficult to conduct employee background checks.

GK

jeffolie,

True. But even if just 30% of the people get educated, that is still as big as either the US or Europe.

It will take a long time for 1.1 billion to get lifted out of poverty, but a lot can happen once even 300 million are..

Fewlesh

Good article in the economist about India this month.

Are you just lifting interesting information from good sources, ie Kurtzweil, the economist and throwing it on the front page?

Please reference sources!
http://www.economist.com/opinion/displaystory.cfm?story_id=5548089

One of my favorite observations from the article in the mag:

Indians use candelight to illuminate the shovel dug trenches to lay miles of fiberoptic cables.

That's sums up India nicely. Tons of super high tech riding on the backs of hundreds of millions of poor agrarian farmers.

GK

Fewlesh,

Note that the super high-tech can absorb a lot of people in a short time.

While 40% on India is illiterate, most of those are older people.

90% of school-age children do go to school now. In 15 years, they will be entering the workforce. The country then becomes a different country.

jeffolie

Could India replace China's manufacturing and trade position with the US? Will India provide competition in the same or at overlapping areas as our trade with China?

We may benefit from a trade war with China and India trying to be the low cost seller to us.

GK

In manufacturing, no. China is too far ahead.

But 83% of the US economy is service (vs. just 15% being mnfctg). India's lead here will be nearly impossible for any other country to replace.

A trade war in software and BPO between India, China, and E. Europe would be very beneficial for the US economy, squeezing costs out all over the place.

Fewlesh

GK,

Squeezing cost yes, but as always, lots of creative destruction in the process.

Fewlesh chants, "Biotech, Biotech ..." :)

We better pull the next great thing out of our butts soon, and stop wasting it on our bloated assets and federal spending.

I cover the auto industry part time for some web sites I publish. This year at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the big news was China because a privately owned Chinese firm, Geely, was showing a car and announced plans to export cars to the US. But there are tremendous downsides to doing business in China. If Intellectual Property is "untested" in India, it's a complete farce in China, where GM, Honda and Toyota all face Chinese manufacturers making virtual copies of complete cars.

The basic need for any business is the rule of law. Contracts must be enforceable. India may have inefficient courts, but they are honest. When doing business in China, your partners and your competitors may be owned by an assortment of national and provincial governments or agencies, including the Army. Try to get a fair court hearing in that warren of conflicting interests.

The drawbacks to China are illustrated in the case of Apex Electronics, a distributor of inexpensive consumer electronics in the US. Their Chinese vendor claimed they hadn't been paid $480 million. The CEO of the company was arrested while in China, but the lawsuit was filed in a California court.

I was so optimistic about India, that a short while ago, I started Auto Report India, to cover the Indian auto industry which is quickly becoming a world player. In the short time since then, everything I've read convinces me that India's promise is even greater than I thought.

Ravinder

Do Indians really see not aligning with either block as a blunder? Does having friendly ties with USSR is seen as foolishness. I do not think so. Not even now.

Whether prosperity of Korea or Taiwan is due to American influence or due to other reasons can always be questioned. Since 1947 Pakistan had good ties with America. It has received everything possible under this earth from America. How great a country is it? Compare its size, ethnicity and diversity with India and you can assess the workload. Remember that two countries consist of same people.

It is very easy to make simplistic assumptions. But unfortunately articles about India are written without knowing it. It's like me commenting on China.

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