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Impact of Globalisation on Developing Countries and India

 

S. Vidhya

Assistant Professor in Management,

P.K.R. Arts College for Women,

Gobichettipalayam – 638 476.

Erode District, Tamilnadu, India.

 

and

 

S. Tamilselvi

P.K.R. Arts College for Women,

Gobichettipalayam – 638 476.

Erode District, Tamilnadu, India.

 

 

Abstract

 

Globalisation is a buzzword that has come to dominate the world since the nineties of the last century with the end of the cold war and the break-up of the former Soviet Union and the global trend towards the rolling ball. The frontiers of the state with increased reliance on the market economy and renewed faith in the private capital and resources, a process of structural adjustment spurred by the studies and influences of the World Bank and other International organisations have started in many of the developing countries. Also, globalisation has brought in new opportunities to developing countries. Greater access to developed country markets and technology transfer hold out promise improved productivity and higher living standard. But globalisation has also thrown up new challenges like growing inequality across and within nations, volatility in financial market and environmental deteriorations. Another negative aspect of globalisation is that a great majority of developing countries remain removed from the process. The liberalisation of the domestic economy and the increasing integration of India with the global economy have helped step up GDP growth rates, which picked up from 5.6% in 1990-91 to a peak level of 77.8% in 1996-97. Growth rates have slowed down since the country has still been able to achieve 5-6% growth rate in three of the last six years. Though growth rates has slumped to the lowest level 4.3% in 2002-03 mainly because of the worst droughts in two decades the growth rates are expected to go up close to 70% in 2003-04. A Global comparison shows that India is now the fastest growing just after China.

 

Keywords:  Globalisation, developing countries, Markets, technology transfer, world bank, growth, liberalization, privatization

 

Introduction

 

            Globalisation is a buzzword that has come to dominate the world since the nineties of the last century with the end of the cold war and the break-up of the former Soviet Union and the global trend towards the rolling ball. The frontiers of the state with increased reliance on the market economy and renewed faith in the private capital and resources, a process of structural adjustment spurred by the studies and influences of the World Bank and other International organisations have started in many of the developing countries. Also, Globalisation has brought in new opportunities to developing countries. Greater access to developed country markets and technology transfer hold out promise improved productivity and higher living standard. But globalisation has also thrown up new challenges like growing inequality across and within nations, volatility in financial market and environmental deteriorations. Another negative aspect of globalisation is that a great majority of developing countries remain removed from the process. Till the nineties the process of globalisation of the Indian economy was constrained by the barriers to trade and investment liberalisation of trade, investment and financial flows initiated in the nineties has progressively lowered the barriers to competition and hastened the pace of globalisation

 

Globalised World - What does it mean?

 

Though the precise definition of globalisation is still unavailable a few definitions worth viewing, Stephen Gill: defines globalisation as the reduction of transaction cost of transborder movements of capital and goods thus of factors of production and goods. Guy Brainbant: says that the process of globalisation not only includes opening up of world trade, development of advanced means of communication, internationalisation of financial markets, growing importance of MNC's, population migrations and more generally increased mobility of persons, goods, capital, data and ideas but also infections, diseases and pollution

 

Impact on India

 

            India opened up the economy in the early nineties following a major crisis that led by a foreign exchange crunch that dragged the economy close to defaulting on loans. The response was a slew of Domestic and external sector policy measures partly prompted by the immediate needs and partly by the demand of the multilateral organisations. The new policy regime radically pushed forward in favour of a more open and market oriented economy.

 

            Major measures initiated as a part of the liberalisation and globalisation strategy in the early nineties included scrapping of the industrial licensing regime, reduction in the number of areas reserved for the public sector, amendment of the monopolies and the restrictive trade practices act, start of the privatisation programme, reduction in tariff rates and change over to market determined exchange rates. Over the years there has been a steady liberalisation of the current account transactions, more and more sectors opened up for foreign direct investments and portfolio investments facilitating entry of foreign investors in telecom, roads, ports, airports, insurance and other major sectors. The Indian tariff rates reduced sharply over the decade from a weighted average of 72.5% in 1991-92 to 24.6 in 1996-97.Though tariff rates went up slowly in the late nineties it touched 35.1% in 2001-02. India is committed to reduced tariff rates. Peak tariff rates are to be reduced to be reduced to the minimum with a peak rate of 20%, in another 2 years most non-tariff barriers have been dismantled by March 2002, including almost all quantitative restrictions.

 

India is Global

 

            At the present, we can also say about the tale of two India’s: We have the best of times; we have the worst of times. There is sparkling prosperity, there is stinking poverty. We have dazzling five star hotels side by side with darkened ill-starred hovels. We have everything by globalization, we have   nothing by globalization.

            The liberalisation of the domestic economy and the increasing integration of India with the global economy have helped step up GDP growth rates, which picked up from 5.6% in 1990-91 to a peak level of 77.8% in 1996-97. Growth rates have slowed down since the country has still been able to achieve 5-6% growth rate in three of the last six years. Though growth rates has slumped to the lowest level 4.3% in 2002-03 mainly because of the worst droughts in two decades the growth rates are expected to go up close to 70% in 2003-04. A Global comparison shows that India is now the fastest growing just after China.

 

            This is major improvement given that India is growth rate in the 1970's was very low at 3% and GDP growth in countries like Brazil, Indonesia, Korea, and Mexico was more than twice that of India. Though India's average annual growth rate almost doubled in the eighties to 5.9% it was still lower than the growth rate in China, Korea and Indonesia. The pickup in GDP growth has helped improve India's global position. Consequently India's position in the global economy has improved from the 8th position in 1991 to 4th place in 2001. WhenGDP is calculated on a purchasing power parity basis.

 

Globalisation and Poverty

 

            Globalisation in the form of increased integration though trade and investment is an important reason why much progress has been made in reducing poverty and global inequality over recent decades. But it is not the only reason for this often unrecognised progress, good national polices, sound institutions and domestic political stability also matter. Despite this progress, poverty remains one of the most serious international challenges we face up to 1.2 billion of the developing world 4.8 billion people still live in extreme poverty.

 

            But the proportion of the world population living in poverty has been steadily declining and since 1980 the absolute number of poor people has stopped rising and appears to have fallen in recent years despite strong population growth in poor countries. If the proportion living in poverty had not fallen since 1987 alone a further 215million people would be living in extreme poverty today.

 

India has to concentrate on five important areas or things to follow to achieve this goal. The areas like technological entrepreneurship, new business openings for small and medium enterprises, importance of quality management, new prospects in rural areas and privatisation of financial institutions. The manufacturing of technology and management of technology are two different significant areas in the country. There will be new prospects in rural India. The growth of Indian economy very much depends upon rural participation in the global race. After implementing the new economic policy the role of villages got its own significance because of its unique outlook and branding methods. For example food processing and packaging are the one of the area where new entrepreneurs can enter into a big way. It may be organised in a collective way with the help of co-operatives to meet the global demand.

           

Understanding the current status of globalisation is necessary for setting course for future. For all nations to reap the full benefits of globalisation it is essential to create a level playing field. President Bush's recent proposal to eliminate all tariffs on all manufactured goods by 2015 will do it. In fact it may exacerbate the prevalent inequalities. According to this proposal, tariffs of 5% or less on all manufactured goods will be eliminated by 2005 and higher than 5% will be lowered to 8%. Starting 2010 the 8% tariffs will be lowered each year until they are eliminated by 2015.

 

GDP Growth Rate

 

            The Indian economy is passing through a difficult phase caused by several unfavourable domestic and external developments; Domestic output and Demand conditions were adversely affected by poor performance in agriculture in the past two years. The global economy experienced an overall deceleration and recorded an output growth of 2.4% during the past year growth in real GDP in 2001-02 was 5.4% as per the Economic Survey in 2000-01. The performance in the first quarter of the financial year is5.8% and second quarter is 6.1%.

 

Export and Import

 

India's Export and Import in the year 2001-02 was to the extent of 32,572 and 38,362 million respectively. Many Indian companies have started becoming respectable players in the International scene. Agriculture exports account for about 13 to 18% of total annual of annual export of the country. In 2000-01 Agricultural products valued at more than US $ 6million were exported from the country 23% of which was contributed by the marine products alone. Marine products in recent years have emerged as the single largest contributor to the total agricultural export from the country accounting for over one fifth of the total agricultural exports. Cereals (mostly basmati rice and non-basmati rice), oil seeds, tea and coffee are the other prominent products each of which accounts for nearly 5 to 10% of the country’s total agricultural exports.

 

Where does Indian stand in terms of Global Integration?

 

            India clearly lags in globalisation. Number of countries has a clear lead among them China, large part of east and far east Asia and Eastern Europe. Let’s look at a few indicators how much we lag.

 

*      Over the past decade FDI flows into India have averaged around 0.5% of GDP against 5% for China 5.5% for Brazil.

*      Consider global trade - India's share of world merchandise exports increased from .05% to .07% over the past 20 years. Over the same period China's share has tripled to almost 4%.

*      India's share of global trade is similar to that of the Philippines and economy 6 times smaller according to IMF estimates.

*      It is interesting to note the remark made last year by Mr. Bimal Jalan, Governor of RBI. Despite all the talk, we are now where ever close being globalised in terms of any commonly used indicator of globalisation. In fact we are one of the least globalised among the major countries - however we look at it.

*      As Amartya Sen and many other have pointed out that India, as a geographical, politico-cultural entity has been interacting with the outside world throughout history and still continue to do so. It has to adapt, assimilate and contribute. This goes without saying even as we move into what is called a globalised world which is distinguished from previous eras from by faster travel and communication, greater trade linkages, denting of political and economic sovereignty and greater acceptance of democracy as a way of life.

 

Consequences

 

            The implications of globalisation for a national economy are many. Globalisation has intensified interdependence and competition between economies in the world market. This is reflected in Interdependence in regard to trading in goods and services and in movement of capital. As a result domestic economic developments are not determined entirely by domestic policies and market conditions. Rather, they are influenced by both domestic and international policies and economic conditions. It is thus clear that a globalising economy, while formulating and evaluating its domestic policy cannot afford to ignore the possible actions and reactions of policies and developments in the rest of the world. This constrained the policy option available to the government which implies loss of policy autonomy to some extent, in decision-making at the national level.

 

            Indian economy had experienced major policy changes in early 1990s. The new economic reform, popularly known as, Liberalization, Privatization and Globalization (LPG model) aimed at making the Indian economy as fastest growing economy and globally competitive. The series of reforms undertaken with respect to industrial sector, trade as well as financial sector aimed at making the economy more efficient.

 

            With the onset of reforms to liberalize the Indian economy in July of 1991, a new chapter has dawned for India and her billion plus population. This period of economic transition has had a tremendous impact on the overall economic development of almost all major sectors of the economy, and its effects over the last decade can hardly be overlooked. Besides, it also marks the advent of the real integration of the Indian economy into the global economy

 

            This era of reforms has also ushered in a remarkable change in the Indian mindset, as it deviates from the traditional values held since Independence in 1947, such as self reliance and socialistic policies of economic development, which mainly due to the inward looking restrictive form of governance, resulted in the isolation, overall backwardness and inefficiency of the economy, amongst a host of other problems.

 

            Now that India is in the process of restructuring her economy, with aspirations of elevating herself from her present desolate position in the world, the need to speed up her economic development is even more imperative. And having witnessed the positive role that Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) has played in the rapid economic growth of most of the Southeast Asian countries and most notably China, India has embarked on an ambitious plan to emulate the successes of her neighbors to the east and is trying to sell herself as a safe and profitable destination for FDI.

 

The Bright Side of Globalization

 

            The rate of growth of the Gross Domestic Product of India has been on the increase from 5.6 per cent during 1980-90 to seven per cent in the 1993-2001 periods. In the last four years, the annual growth rate of the GDP was impressive at 7.5 per cent (2003-04), 8.5 per cent (2004-05), nine per cent (2005-06) and 9.2 per cent (2006-07). Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is confident of having a 10 per cent growth in the GDP in the Eleventh Five Year Plan period.

 

            The foreign exchange reserves (as at the end of the financial year) were $ 39 billion (2000-01), $ 107 billion (2003-04), $ 145 billion (2005-06) and $ 180 billion (in February 2007). It is expected that India will cross the $ 200 billion mark soon.

 

            The cumulative FDI inflows from 1991 to September 2006 were Rs.1, 81,566 crores (US $ 43.29 billion). The sectors attracting highest FDI inflows are electrical equipments including computer software and electronics (18 per cent), service sector (13 per cent), telecommunications (10 per cent), transportation industry (nine per cent), etc. In the inflow of FDI, India has surpassed South Korea to become the fourth largest recipient. India controls at the present 45 per cent of the global outsourcing market with an estimated income of $ 50 billion.

 

Demoting Agriculture

 

            The Economic Survey reports released till 1991 contained the Chapters in the following order: (1) Introduction, (2) Agricultural Production, (3) Industrial Performance and Policies, (4) Infrastructure, (5) Human Resources, (6) Prices, Price Policy and Public Distribution System, (7) Fiscal Policy and Government Budget, (8) Monetary and Credit Developments, (9) The External Sector and (10) Problems and Prospects.

 

            In the Economic Survey 1991-92, Finance Minister Manmohan Singh recast the Chapters in the following order: (1) Introduction, (2) Public Finance, (3) Money and Credit, (4) Prices and Distribution, (5) Balance of Payments, (6) Industry, (7) Agriculture, (8) Infrastructure and (9) Social Sectors.

 

            It is not known as to why the Finance Minister demoted the importance of agriculture that has about 90 per cent population from the second place to the seventh in the annual Economic Survey of the country. In a way does it symbolize the low importance deliberately given to the growth of the agriculture sector in the scheme of globalization?

 

Strategy of Globalization

 

            In the Report (2006) East Asian Renaissance, World Bank Advisor Dr Indermit Gill stated: Cities are at the core of a development strategy based on international integration, investment and innovation. East Asia is witnessing the largest rural-to-urban shift of population in history. Two million new urban dwellers are expected in East Asian cities every month for the next 20 years. This will mean planning for and building dynamic, connected cities that are linked both domestically and to the outside world so that economic growth continues and social cohesion is strengthened.

            The market economy seems to be more concerned with the growth of consumerism to attract the high income groups who are mostly in the cities in the developing countries. Rural economy and the agricultural sector were out of focus in the strategy of globalization.

 

            About the impact of globalization, in particular on the development of India, the ILO Report (2004) stated: In India, there had been winners and losers. The lives of the educated and the rich had been enriched by globalization. The information technology (IT) sector was a particular beneficiary. But the benefits had not yet reached the majority, and new risks had cropped up for the losers the socially deprived and the rural poor. Significant numbers of non-perennial poor, who had worked hard to escape poverty, were finding their gains reversed. Power was shifting from elected local institutions to unaccountable trans-national bodies. Western perceptions, which dominated the globe media, were not aligned with local perspectives; they encouraged consumerism in the midst of extreme poverty and posed a threat to cultural and linguistic diversity.

 

            Of its 13 million populations, Mumbai city has 54 per cent in slums. It is estimated that 100 to 300 new families come to Mumbai every day and most land up in a slum colony. Prof R. N. Sharma of the Tata Institute of Social Science says that Mumbai is disintegrating into slums. From being known as the slum capital of India and the biggest slum of Asia, Mumbai is all set to become the slum capital of the world.

 

            The population of Delhi is about 14 million of which nearly 45 per cent population lives in slums, unauthorized colonies, JJ clusters and undeveloped rural parts. During dry weather these slum dwellers use open areas around their units for defecation and the entire human waste generated from the slums along with the additional wastewater from their households is discharged untreated into the river Yamuna.

 

The FDI inflows have in no way assisted in improving the health and environment conditions of the people. On the other hand, the financial capital of India and the political capital of India are set to become the topmost slum cities of the world.

 

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