Accelerating growth: the double-edged sword of self-reliance

With the world seeking an alternative for China, will India rise to the occasion and indeed be the 'pharmacy to the world'?

Clockwise: Sunil Punjabi, MD and country speaker, Merck India; Varun Vijay Rao, chief procurement officer at Aceto US; Dinesh Dua, chairman, Pharmexcil and Girish Dixit, president, Eisai Pharmaceuticals, India

There is opportunity up for grabs, with the world looking for alternatives to China as a supply source. With India moving towards self-reliance, with its Aatmanirbhar Bharat mission, is it flirting dangerously with protectionism or will it achieve exponential growth by nurturing local companies? There are two views emerging. Outlook Business’ Advantage India Chemical Summit saw an expert panel discuss the implications of replacing imports with local manufacturing. Will it create more enduring growth on the back of innovation or will it affect competitiveness in segments where India is a strong player? The panel included Sunil Punjabi, managing director and country speaker, Merck India and head of research solutions business for Merck Life Science; Varun Vijay Rao, chief procurement officer at Aceto US; Girish Dixit, president and executive director, Eisai Pharmaceuticals, India; and Dinesh Dua, chairman, Pharmaceutical Export Promotion Council of India (Pharmexcil). The discussion was moderated by Outlook Business Editor N Mahalakshmi and Hardik Joshipura, CEO of Innovassynth Technologies, also a partner for the summit.