Archive for August, 2010

Recent comments of president Obama regarding outsourcing saw shivers running through the spines of Indian IT industry, our flagship export to the rest of the world. Worried about the steep rise in unemployment in the US, president Obama told the Congress that he shall be putting sanctions on the companies that outsource jobs outside the boundary of the US. But what is to be seen is how harsh his sanctions would impact IT industry in India

See how money makes the world go round. The most vehement supporter of free trade, the US, marred by century’s worst financial crisis and high unemployment rates, is now resorting to such overtly protectionist measures. Our IT industry is reasonably cautious about it. It nevertheless has put up a brave face and says it’s optimistic about the future. The apex body for IT and ITeS industry – NASSCOM, that such measures in the bigger picture won’t affect India‟s $50 billion IT industry and it also criticized such moves saying that we should face this economic crisis by increasing global cooperation rather than such protectionist measures.

While industry leader INFOSYS argued that outsourcing has increased the efficiency and hence the competitiveness of US companies. It has helped them access the best resources of the world thereby encouraging innovation, which has again lead to job creation in US. Anyhow there is no denying in the fact that if any such restriction is implemented, it shall be met with strong criticism and shall be denting US‟ international image. Also there is fear that other countries may also follow suit.

If talking about its direct impact on India‟s outsourcing and IT firms, these changes wouldn’t be large enough to match the 20-30% benefits that they are getting now. Tax breaks won‟t be able to compete with this kind of deal. But it would also be accompanied with stricter restrictions on H1-B visas given to highly skilled manpower. And the number of our engineers going to US for short projects or permanently settling there would see a sharp decline. Although it’s not too big a case for concern.

In the overall scenario, these set of events won’t prove to be a big setback to our ever expanding IT industries. Our image of the world‟s back office is here to stay. IT shall continue to grow bigger and better…

– Shreyank Jamar

Evoking national pride and international attention, the Indian rupee attained a new avatar in its new symbol. Backed by over a trillion dollar strong economy, the Rupee is now set to go places and whooping it out loud to the world – the very purpose of giving Indian rupee a distinct and identifiable symbol of it‟s own.

Rupee now joins the elite club of super strong currencies of US Dollar ($), Japanese Yen (¥), British Pound (£) and EU’s Euro (€), having internationally accepted symbols for them. The Indian growth story is very much intact and is growing strength by strength every passing day. And in this context this move is seen as a symbol not only of Indian currency but also of the Indian ambition to regain its lost glory and again become a global superpower.

“It’s a big statement on the Indian currency. It would lend a distinctive character and identity to the currency and further highlight the strength and robustness of the Indian economy as also a favoured destination for global investments,” said Ms. Ambika Soni, Information & Broadcasting Minister, at a Cabinet meeting.

Apart from all this hoopla, the new symbol shall also be serving the purpose of differentiating Indian rupee from its troublesome neighboring countries — Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Indonesia — similarly known rupee or rupiah. But all this symbolism shall not hold any importance unless it‟s backed by bold and efficient government policies.

The currency has got an international face but is still to become international in its character. With the introduction of this symbol, the debate surrounding complete capital account convertibility is again expected to shoot up. We are yet to deal with our problems of rampant corruption, astounding poverty and in recent years of income inequality.

Long term implications of the new symbol shall be visible in days to come. But it sure is a time to acknowledge and celebrate our achievements of the past 20 years of economic reforms and gear ourselves for the arduous task of realizing the Indian dream that lies ahead.

– Shreyank Jamar.