India is the world’s fastest-growing economy and is on track to become the third largest as early as 2026. It is already Canada’s 14th-largest export market and will continue to be a valuable partner as Canada deepens its economic links to the Indo-Pacific region. The time to enter that market and forge greater ties with Indian customers and partners is now.
In fact, New Brunswick is currently the only Atlantic Province to establish an on-the-ground presence in India’s capital, New Delhi, and its IT capital, Bengaluru, via two locally engaged staff. This in-market presence allows Indian companies to get connected with New Brunswick opportunities quickly.
ONB Vice President of Business Development Steve Milbury is making his first visit to India this week, looking to further strengthen New Brunswick’s position as a favourable jurisdiction for investment. “We’re looking forward to showing the Indian market how valuable it is to our province. We have made significant investments in our India Strategy and expect to see that market grow significantly for New Brunswick over the next three to five years,” he says. “This visit will be about establishing and strengthening both new and existing relationships in-market, laying a foundation that will open more doors for the province, both in terms of investment attraction and export development for local companies.”
Why India and why now?
ONB CEO Traci Simmons says that while ONB’s India Strategy may appear new, it has been in the works for some time. “We’ve recognized for a while now that India’s middle class was growing at a rapid pace. We saw that it was set to become one of the top three or four largest economies in the world and that would be a great opportunity for our province.”
She says Indian companies are increasingly interested in North America and New Brunswick is well positioned to capitalize on that interest to the benefit of both jurisdictions. “India has for many years seen significant growth and has been a hub for offshoring. Its companies have also seen a greater need for being closer to their clients. That’s good news for New Brunswick as a nearshore option.”
The New Brunswick Advantage
India-based companies like Tech Mahindra, Sedin Technologies, and HCL Technologies have all chosen to expand their operations to New Brunswick in recent years with support from ONB. Milbury says The New Brunswick Advantage – the province’s winning combination of people, infrastructure, innovation, and agility – is resonating with Indian companies’ need to be competitive in the global marketplace. “It’s not only large multinationals that are interested in New Brunswick, we’re also seeing entrepreneurs like Pavel Gupta of NeenOpal, a midsized firm, establish new operations here as well. Again, it’s about being closer to their North American customers and recognizing that the skilled talent they need is here.”
He says New Brunswick is being recognized as an affordable jurisdiction that can support the delivery of quality services to the North American market. “India is capitalizing on our low business costs and desirable talent pool. They’re also leveraging our immigration streams and working with our post-secondary schools to bring students here. Once they’re here, many hope to remain, because New Brunswick is simply a great place to live.”
ONB is already working with many of New Brunswick’s export-ready companies to help them create lasting partnerships in India. Milbury points to New Brunswick’s traditional industries as a big reason to be optimistic. “New Brunswick is well known for our strengths in farming, forestry, and fisheries. We’re good at growing things, and we have the companies in those sectors that will be of great value to India as it continues to grow and modernize. We’re helping these companies find new opportunities in the world’s fastest-growing economy – it’s an exciting thing to be part of.”
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