India is fast outpacing other developing countries in terms of GDP
‘’It is a well-known fact that India as a country is fast outpacing the other developing countries in terms of GDP growth rate and the size of economy. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) counts India as a source of growth for the global economy for the next few decades stating that it could be what China was for the world economy. As reported by IMF, India would remain the fastest growing major economy amidst heightened concerns over global trade war and oil price concerns. The recent Ranked 3rd in the world with regard to number of billionaires in the country, India is also contributing hugely in purchasing power parity measures, to the extent of a substantial 15 per cent of the growth in the global economy. This clearly indicates the great underlying potential in the country as a promising great exhibitions market. Looking into the state of structural reforms and the present state of economy, India has already much recovered from the effects of two of the major structural reforms taken by the government of India by way of demonetisation and GST (Goods and Services tax) implementation. In terms of ease of doing business also, the country has now come down 53 ranks from the earlier position of 130th rank to 77th rank at present and is rapidly progressing in this direction with a lot of reforms underway by the current government. The result being that our country is now ranked 1st among the South Asian countries as compared to the earlier rank of 6th in 2014 in terms of EODB. India also ranks well on the trade imports and exports ranking in the world at 12% and 21% respectively reflecting the favourable bent and positioning in terms of international trade. Another important factor confirming India as an important market globally is the huge consumer base reaching the tune of USD3.6 trillion by 2025 as per a study by the Boston Consulting Group.
Coming to the outlook and specific performance of the exhibition industry per se, the recent report by UFI- the global association of exhibition industry, shows a highly positive outlook about the Indian exhibition industry with India occupying the highest position in terms of increased performance by the industry players, followed by US and Germany showing equal performance levels as per the survey reports conducted by UFI. This shows positive growth prospects inherent in the exhibitions business in the country. India has also been reported following very closely, or in some aspects leading the global counterparts in terms of the digitisation index in the industry. Enhanced implementation and use of digitisation have been reported by the majority of industry players in their organisations and in the way they operate.
With the estimated total economic impact of 649 billion INR, the industry acts a major catalyst to the overall economy, with approximately 118 thousand jobs hosted by the sector in the country. India hosts 745 professional shows in the organised sector annually with almost 76% share occupied by the B2B segment. The sector split of Indian exhibitions reflects its high relevance to the Indian government’s ambitious ‘MAKE IN INDIA’ program; most of the target sectors under ‘Make in India’ are represented by the exhibition industry. With continued positive support by the government, the Indian exhibitions sector is poised to register double digit growth in the coming few years. The increased infra spend, expansion plans by existing exhibition venues and the coming up of new venues will add to the overall growth of the sector. Exhibition Industry growth rates in India are currently above the regional average in Asia i.e. around 8% in last 2-3 years as per industry reports.
With continuous efforts at the end of the industry association- IEIA (Indian Exhibition Industry Association), the government is mulling inclusion of exhibitions in the list of champion sectors of the country to be counted on, as the promising sectors supporting the overall growth of the Indian economy. The association is also working towards addressing important agendas towards streamlining organising of exhibitions in various regions with the positive support of the government. With increasing number of professionals and organisations showing interest for professional international level programs on exhibitions management like CEM (certified in exhibitions management), the need for high quality professionals in the industry is also being met and enabled by IEIA, supporting the further growth and performance standards in the sector.’’
Writer Source Nidhi Sharma, executive director of the Indian Exhibition Industry Association (IEIA), outlines her government’s support for exhibitions in India and their importance to the economy.