Despite the global downturn which is hampering India's ambition to reach double digit growth, consumers' appetite for shopping is still clearly visible in the shiny newly built shopping malls spreading across the country. While organised retail is a relatively new phenomenon in India, the FT reports some commentators predicting that the Indian retail sector to grow to £450 billion within 6 years, putting it on a par with Italy. McKinsey predict that 300m shoppers per year will visit shopping malls within a similar time frame.
Although India is not for the fainthearted and there are still a number of restrictions that hinder foreign investment in retail in India - not least the requirement for any foreign investment to be in single brand - if the shine has come off retail in the UK for the foreseeable future, Fashionista suggests that retailers with global ambitions could do worse than look to India as a new growth market.
The development of India's dynamic and consumer retail sector and export opportunites for UK companies are the subject of UK Trade & Investment's event held on 27th January 2009 at which their report "The Retail Opportnunities in India" 2009 will be launched. See here for more information.