UK Business Secretary Sajid Javid has been over in India discussing what a post BREXIT trade relationship with the country could look like.
After China, India is the 2nd most populous country in the world. With more than 50 million online shoppers and internet population that is set to surpass half a billion by 2018 India is one of the most exciting countries in the world from an ecommerce growth perspective.
The EU don’t currently have a trade agreement with India, although they’ve been talking about it for almost a decade. Since 2007 there have always been too many barriers with both sides stalling on agreements ranging from motors to dairy produce, from agricultural subsidies to booze tariffs. Either way a deal has yet to be done.
For Tamebay readers, the main interest is the pure ecommerce side of trade with India. Online sales in India are expected to reach $29bn by 2017 and will continue to grow reaching a staggering $100bn by 2021.
There have been a number of barriers to entry in India, both the rules for marketplace investment affecting companies such as Flipkart and Amazon, and the rules for merchants which pretty much means that you need to partner with an Indian based merchant of record. The Indian merchant buys from you and then sells under their own company on the Indian marketplace which is tiresome to set up and more complicated to manage then simply listing and selling directly on an Indian site yourself.
It’s early days, but if the UK can negotiate a bit more freedom for sellers in the UK to sell on Indian marketplaces then a deal between the UK and India would be something many would welcome. India would also be happy – something like 30% of Indian exports come to the UK so we’re an important customer to them too.