ISB Updates

‘Business leaders, the catalyst to Indo-US ties’ – United States Ambassador Nancy J Powell

The US Ambassador to India Nancy J Powellvisited the Mohali Campus of the Indian School of Business (ISB) on Tuesday, May 28. She interacted with the ISB students and staff about the US-India economic partnership and stressed on the growing relation between the two countries in the fields of commerce and education.
Her talk focussed mainly on how US sees India as a market of the future, and how it is imperative that more American companies invest in India. It was peppered with anecdotes of her experiences in India over the last 20 years. “I first visited India 21 years ago and the major difference I can notice today is that India’s GDP has grown ten times since then,” said Powell. Further she said that as per the predictions of global trends for 2030, Indian economy is expected to quadruple to $8million making it the third largest in the world.
Powell emphasized that for both countries to take advantage of this growing Indo-US partnership, trade gates need to be kept open, and new avenues need to be created for businesses to exchange ideas and best practices. Citing from a US study, she stated that of all the technological and engineering firms that were started by immigrants, 33% were of Indian heritage, a number of whom have returned to India to contribute to the growing economy. She added that some of these entrepreneurs, who were game changers, were currently on the ISB board.
“I am very proud to say that our people, our cities, our states are connecting like never before,” Powell added further. She said that on an average about 1,00,000 Indians are in the US for their higher education, of which at least 32% are women.
She went on to say that the collaboration of ideas and innovation in technology could be seen trickling down, especially in the field of medicine. She spoke about the John F Welch Technology Centre, GE’s first R&D centre outside of US, where engineers have scaled down the cost of a lamp meant to keep a baby warm from $150,000 to $3000. “This phenomenal growth in the Indo-US ties is not attributed to politicians or diplomats like me, but to business leaders who realised early on how much can be achieved if Indians and Americans worked together,” Powell said. These business leaders who had the opportunity to study in the US were the catalyst to the change and growth in the Indo-US relationship over the last 20 years.
Looking into the future, especially in terms of the higher education sector, Ambassador Powell said that US would be very interested to see whether the US community college model can be replicated here. She also said that a dialogue has been initiated to increase grants and scholarships for Indians who want to study in the US, and hoped that as the bilateral education talks expand, more and more Americans would come to India to study.