Indo-German Business Talk: Geopolitics, Elections, and MSMEs

2024 – the “Super Election” Year. Research has estimated that, this year, more than 60 countries will hold elections, totalling for around 2 billion voters. Included here is India, who will vote between April and June, and elections for a new European parliament in June. Although there is a general census that Narendra Modi’s government will succeed in the election, businesses still need to analyse how to navigate electoral periods in their home countries, as well as abroad, when they operate internationally. Geopolitical stability and uncertainties also play a role here, with more and more companies investing in geostrategy and risk management.

Arguably, the Indian and German economies are defined by their micro, small and mid-sized enterprises, commonly known as MSMEs or SMEs in India and Mittelstand in Germany. In India they contribute to 30% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and facilitate 40% of employment. In Germany, there are known as the back-bone and “Hidden Champions” of the German economy. These innovative and specialised enterprises play a crucial role to their respective companies; however their smaller nature makes them more risk-averse and reactive to instabilities, hence why it is important to analyse their behaviour(s) during electoral periods.

On 27 March, in our Indo-German Business Talk, we looked into this connection with three expert panellists: Chandrakant Salunkhe, Founder and President, SME Chamber of India, Europe-India SME Business Council; Rumki Majumdar, Director, Deloitte South Asia; and Hartmut Meyer, Chairman of the Management Board, Die KMU-Berater.

Dr Rumki Majumdar, Director, Deloitte South Asia

Key topics in the discussion included how MSMEs can navigate electoral periods, their role in policy making and how they can navigate geopolitical instabilities and volatile environments. The discussion also highlighted the importance of building trust to further Indo-German collaboration and how there is a large amount of potential that can be achieved with strong networking and political support; including the game-changing effects regulations such as an EU-India Free Trade Agreement can have.

Chandrakant Salunke, Founder and President, SME Chamber of India, Europe-India SME Business Council
Dr Hartmut Meyer, Chairman of the Management Board, Die KMU-Berater

Watch the entire stream below and share your thoughts in the comments. For further information on upcoming sessions, subscribe to our mailing list!