Submission to the Economics and Industry Standing Committee

By Hugo Seymour

The Perth USAsia Centre’s Research Analyst Hugo Seymour prepared the Centre’s written submission to the WA Parliament’s Inquiry into Western Australia’s Economic Relationship with India. The submission advances:

– Over the last decade, as India’s economy has more than doubled in size, the value of Western Australia’s (WA’s) trade with India has more than halved. This is not due to a lack of economic complementary or trading opportunity;

– The structurally-driven growth of the Indian economy, which in a decade’s time will match the size of China’s today, provides WA with a premier opportunity to advance its market and sector economic diversification priorities;

– The increasing opportunities for WA-India economic engagement are arising as a result of India’s considerable growth in consumer and industry demand, as well as Indian Central and State Government policies to improve both the business climate and their delivery of essential services;

– WA has the private and public sector capacity to further participate in India’s economic rise, and a strengthened relationship will help ensure the State remains connected into the corridors of regional and global growth. And while an economic partnership between WA and India will have to be of a different kind to WA’s trading relationships with Northeast Asia, its development is both possible and necessary;

– A continued trend of divergence between India’s growth, its contribution to the global economy and its rising share of global outbound investment – and WA’s trade and investment levels with India – will likely further expose the WA economy to international risk over coming decades;

– The endorsement by the Commonwealth Government of the commissioned India Economic Strategy, which highlights the urgency of increased whole-of-nation engagement with India, outlines the criticality of intensified Australian State Government engagement. The Strategy asserts that India’s trajectory of liberalisation, trade openness and ease of doing business will continue to arc in favour of engagement – and the onus is on Australia to take advantage of the opportunities.

Details on the Inquiry can be found here.

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