Demographic edge means 21st century will be India’s,says Mukesh Ambani

As India’s growth story continues the 21st century will be India’s and demographically as the world grows older...

Written by Press Trust Of India | Mumbai | Published: March 9, 2009 12:20:47 am

As India’s growth story continues the 21st century will be India’s and demographically as the world grows older,the country is becoming younger and that will be its strength,RIL chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani said.

“In this decade and coming decades,India is becoming younger as the world becomes older,” Ambani said at the International Bar Association (IBA) Business Law Conference on India as an emerging economic giant here.

“Fundamentally,the world is becoming older and India is becoming younger and that is our strength,” Ambani said.

Reeling out statistics,the Reliance Industries’ chairman said out of India’s one billion people,44 per cent are less than 19 years of age.

“In the next 20 years,we will have more than 400 million under the age of 35 and in a decade from now,only 10 per cent of Indians will be above 60 years of age,” he said.

Ambani said there are four trends that would drive the world and India has a competitive advantage in them. “The first driver is demographics,” he said. India today represents in demographic terms exactly what the United States was in the 1910-1920s,he said.

The second trend is democracy and its pluralism and the ability of Indians to believe in that democracy. “This is our baby-boomer generation that is growing up,that is aspiring,that produces and consumes at the same time and creates internal markets,” he said.

“The third trend that I see is again in India’s favour and I am a big believer in this.” As an engineer,he felt “that technology is going to drive more and more value-creation in the world and in spite of the recent economic meltdown,technology is not going to stop.”

It would be technology that would pull the world out of recession,he said and added that relative to most other countries India has embraced technology better.

He termed the last advantage as globalisation and growth. “I think we have got an underlined growth momentum,and whatever happens to the rest of the world,we still think that we will grow at six to seven per cent,” Ambani said.

“While there will be ups and downs in globalisation,we have the ability to reinvent our growth model and that again is strength. While the world is contracting,we will still continue to grow,” he added.

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