With all the plus and minus, China and India have become world’s new growth engine, and to some extend, the world silently relies on their economic might to keep the economy growing. Trade-led China, even move further, by developing giant infrastructure projects nationwide, world class cities and facilities, to make it well-prepared for the dawn of new world order.
India, however, despite the fast-pace growth over the past 2 decades, fails to catch-up China in many ways, especially in infrastructure, and facilities. I would say that China and India are two different worlds. You can easily feel you’re in first world, economic heavyweight power, in Shanghai, China’s most important city. You won’t feel the same if you’re in Mumbai.
Let’s cut it off here, everyone is talking about China and India, and their silent competition. Let’s talk about Indonesia, the medium-size Asian giant. Indonesia is actually in a good shape to catch you with India, while it’s still far to catch you with China. Infrastructure-wise, India is lagging behind Indonesia, i would say. And with the current commitment from Indonesian government to spent US$400 billion in the next 5 years for infrastructure alone, will give Indonesia a competitive edge over India. Indonesia is also located in a very stable and economically-friendly neighbors, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and China, Korea, Japan for further extend. While India is located nearby vulnerable and politically-unstable neighbors, let alone their economic performance, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Afghanistan. Eventhough India alone is already big, without friendly neighbors, it’s not easy to foster growth in the long run.
Overall, Indonesia is in better shape than India, proportionally; it’s percapita is bigger, export percapita is bigger, forex reserve, demographic condition, etc.
While Indonesian companies remain modest in term of size and revenue, it’s accelerating in an amazing pace, and new companies come to surface. It’s only about time, when Indonesia will replace India as Asia’s investor darling.
Written for Good News From Indonesia by Akhyari Hananto