Breakthrough deal in education relations of India and Australia.
The Melbourne Business School at the University of Melbourne has announced a partnership with India’s top business school – the Indian School of Business (ISB).
Now, this partnership will give MBA students a truly global perspective of emerging business trends.
As part of the collaboration between the two schools, Executive MBA and Senior Executive MBA cohorts from Melbourne Business School will undertake immersion modules at ISB’s Hyderabad campus (pictured).
This is a brilliant deal and will contribute to the India-capability of Australian executives.
Art in both traditional and contemporary form is alive and thriving in India, judging by a beautiful exhibition at the Melbourne Museum.
Sutr Santati curated by Lavina Baldota of the Abheraj Baldota Foundation is worth seeing for the quality and innovation of the objects, which is matched by the display which adds to the beauty.
I was enthralled – but when I saw the great Mahatma Gandhi featured in one of the pieces, I just stopped and admired the way this exhibition pays homage to the history of free India and yet celebrates modern innovation.
It made me realise that it is only a little over 75 years when India had some of the finest FREEDOM FIGHTERS in the history of human struggle to be free.
Make sure you see this soon!
Celebrating 75 years of India’s independence, Sutr Santati showcases 75 hand-woven textiles created by contemporary Indian designers.
In May 2023, Melbourne Museum welcomes international exhibition Sutr Santati: Then. Now. Next. Stories of India woven in thread. Conceived and curated by Lavina Baldota of the Abheraj Baldota Foundation, the exhibition brings together diverse textile traditions of the country, conceived and created by some of its most prominent artisans, craftspeople and designers.
Sutr Santati means ‘continuity of thread’ in Hindi. As the exhibition title, it is a metaphor for ongoing dialogues in Indian culture and society, which shape its evolution, bridging the past with the future. The exhibition’s curatorial vision seeks to promote the ideals of organic and slow consumerism in reflecting India’s identity and the inherent collective, collaborative efforts which are required to push towards such goals.
The themes, techniques and materials of specially commissioned fabrics in the exhibition are viewed through the lens of innovation. In doing so, they reinforce the value of fabric – an important legacy of Indian independence – to define the country’s contemporary artistic landscape, and to push its creativity into the future.
Heartiest congratulations to Lynley Crosswell, CEO, Museums Victoria, and Rohini Kappadath, General Manager, Immigration Museum – you have given us a special opportunity to gain insights into India.
India’s “north east region” has long been neglected and is little known among western leaders – but it has a crucial future because of the role it can play in India’s strategic and commercial connectivity in the surrounding region.
The role of China in the Indo-Pacific increases the focus on this sensitive region.
India is now giving the NER priority – there are around 30 major road and highway links under construction, a complex process when border crossings are involved. There are also around 10 major railway construction projects including bridges and new lines.
This has been so well described by Sreeparna Banerjee and Ambar Kumar Ghosh, “India’s Northeast: Gateway to Connectivity with Eastern Neighbours,” ORF Occasional Paper No. 395, March 2023, Observer Research Foundation.
India’s northeast consists of eight states—Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Tripura, Sikkim, Mizoram, Meghalaya, and Nagaland. It shares 5,812 km of international boundaries with the neighbouring countries of Myanmar, China, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Bhutan. It is landlocked; seven of the eight states are linked to the rest of India only through the Siliguri Corridor in North Bengal—a narrow strip of land (22-km wide) that is also called the ‘Chicken’s Neck’. The corridor is flanked by Nepal in the north and Bangladesh in the south.
This region can serve as a pivotal connecting space between India and its neighbours to the east in South Asia, as well as to East and Southeast Asia and beyond, enhancing the country’s diplomatic, infrastructural, and commercial engagements.
India’s foreign policy priorities, reflected in its ‘Act East’ and ‘Neighbourhood First’ policies, also bring the northeast into focus as a connectivity gateway to the wider Indo-Pacific.
Japan, with its long-standing expertise in the infrastructure sector, continues to play a significant role in developing physical connectivity projects within and across the northeast.
Australia shares many of the strategic goals of India, and now through the QUAD (India, Australia, Japan and USA) the countries are closer together through their commitment to democracy, open and free cultures and more.
The focus on this region will continue – India is crucially positioned within South Asia and in the broader Bay of Bengal region. It needs to play a more vibrant role in the region, and to do so, must engage more strongly with its East and Southeast Asian neighbours.
The level of honesty in this new memoir, “Dirty Little Secrets” by Nandita Chakraborty, is at times confronting but always refreshing in a genre where so many writers gloss over the difficult parts.
There is no glossing over. This memoir tells it all. It is brave, meaning she is brave, and she will need to be for the future, as this memoir reports. The book includes accounts of being scammed by a man she “loves” but has never physically met. At first this is hard to understand, but gradually we can see how scammers have the ability to trap us.
It is finally a painful story of the quest for love, the yearning for relationship and the impact of a serious climbing fall, leaving the author with acquired brain injury.
The writing style makes the text more powerful – there is no attempt at embellishment or covering up – the style is direct and allows the reader to make up their own mind.
This is also a story about India and Australia. About the different lives of both countries and of the tough times that migrants experience – not the least being their distance from family and the security of home.
This adventurer has left everything behind. Not surprising, then, that the adventurer stumbles again and again.
Her biggest stumble is found in her lasting views that “love is instant” and that “love conquers everything” – both of which leave her vulnerable to some of the nastiest men you will meet in literature.
But for all that, meeting Nandita is to be in touch with joy, smiles, laughter and the spirit that a good life is ahead.
I for one am looking forward to the second instalment.
INTO INDIA was super pleased to see that Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator Penny Wong, has appointed Ms Swati Dave as the inaugural Chair of the Advisory Board to the Centre for Australia-India Relations (CAIR).
By all talks, the CAIR is going to be the new epicentre of Australia’s broad relationship with India.
It can take things to a new level. Much needed.
CAIR will open some time this year and will serve as a national platform to further strengthen our relationship with India.
Why is this such a strong appointment?
Ms Dave is currently Deputy Chair of the Asia Society Australia and as a member of the National Foundation for Australia-China Relations’ Advisory Board. She is also an Investment Committee member for QIC Global Infrastructure. Ms Dave has more than 30 years’ of experience in finance and banking across a range of sectors in both domestic and international markets.
She is the right person to guide the relationship to a higher level.
We need much more guidance on business relations, cross-cultural understanding and a broader cultural engagement with India. INTO INDIA has long called for more Australian investment in India -investment is a powerful basis for future trade.
CAIR will apparently work closely with the Australia India Council (AIC) and the Australia India Institute (AII).
Australia and India – stepping up with CAIR to a new, stronger relationship.
Craig Garvin, CEO, Australian Vintage, is right to enter the India market but needs to find the right way
The company behind McGuigan, Tempus Two and Nepenethe wines has set its sights set on affluent Indian consumers – but it might need to take a second look.
Australian Vintage Limited chief executive Craig Garvin believes the world’s second-most populous country, is “just like China”.
Yes, he is right that there are a million millionaires in Delhi and Mumbai – but does that equate to your market? These are the established wealthy, mainly male, and many are set in their ways.
Is a better market for Australian wines the young emerging wealthy of the future?
India is not “like China” – the Chinese population is much older and India has the youngest population on earth. Millennials and Gen Z are said to amount to around 750 million of India’s population. Known in India as the “demographic dividend”, this young population is the key to market entry for products like wine.
Already we know that sales of red wine are up in major urban centres, driven by demand from young women, educated and in the ranks of professionals and executives.
What distinguishes India for “premium” consumer products is that the market is young, it is emerging, it is a generation that instead of being “born someone” want to “become someone” and females are leading much of the consumer preferences of this young group. That is, it is ripe for change.
There is probably no other market like it in the world.
Other than its four main wine brands McGuigan, Tempus Two, Nepenethe and Barossa Valley Wine Company, Australian Vintage Limited also produces ready-made cocktail mixes under its Mr Stubbs brand, a range of gins under its Tempus Two brand, and a juice concentrate called Austflavour.
Australian Vintage is a strong company with some fabulous brands which will be just right for India – so long as the thinking and strategy is right.
This has to be the year to engage more with India, be there more, make connections, launch products and services, expand into new areas and more.
Just one example stood out for me over the break – EV sales.
Electric Vehicle sales have become a symbol of how fast India is changing.
Delhi has recorded the nation’s largest electric vehicle (EV) sales in the country among all the states/Union Territories. A total of 7,046 EVs were registered in Delhi in December 2022, witnessing an annual growth of 86%.
Since the launch of the EV policy Delhi had recorded registration of a total of 93,329 electric vehicles out of which, two-wheelers contributed nearly 55% of the total EV sales in 2022. The December 2022 sales of EVs have resulted Delhi reaching one step closer to its mission of achieving two-thirds of its targets which can be attributed to the “i3” model of Incentivisation, Innovation and Inclusion.
The Transport Minister of India, Mr. Kailash Gahlot stated Delhi to be the country’s EV capital with 2,300+ charging stations and 200+ batteries swapping stations in operation across the city.
On August 7, 2020, EV policy was launched in Delhi by prioritising two-wheelers and three-wheelers segments, with an aim of rapid adoption of electric vehicles contributing to 25% of all new vehicle registrations by 2024.
A campaign launched by the Chief Minister of Delhi, Mr. Arvind Kejriwal, “Switch Delhi” focuses on spreading awareness about the benefits of such vehicles in making Delhi clean and pollution free. The government is spending more than US$ 183 million (Rs. 1,500 crores) on the electrification of 56 depots for housing more than 10,000 buses by 2025.
As this year comes to a close, INTO INDIA reflects on the game changer – the Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement.
It surprised us all. Many did not expect it to be signed. Nobody expected it to be so vast in potential impact.
ECTA will save Australian exporters around $2 billion a year in tariffs, while consumers and business will save around $500 million in tariffs on imports of finished goods, and inputs to our manufacturing sector.
The tariff commitments provided by India in the agreement will open up access for Australia’s exporters of products including critical minerals, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, lentils, seafood, sheepmeat, horticulture and wine.
Australian service suppliers will benefit from full or partial access across more than 85 Indian services sectors and subsectors. Australian suppliers across 31 sectors and subsectors will be guaranteed the highest standard of treatment that India grants to any future free trade agreement partner.
Australian services sectors to benefit include higher education and adult education, as well as business services such as tax, architecture and urban planning.
ECTA will support tourism and workforce needs in regional Australia by making 1000 Work and Holiday Program places available to young adventurous Indians. It maintains opportunities for Indian students graduating in Australia to undertake post-study work, with a bonus year of stay for high-performing STEM graduates.