Five key growth sectors for Australian businesses in India

09 June 2020 4 min. read
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By 2050, India is expected to be the world’s second largest economy behind China, providing Australian businesses and tertiary institutions with a wealth of growth opportunities. Jai Patel, Head of KPMG’s India Business practice in Australia, shares key areas of opportunity. 

According to the ‘India Economic Strategy to 2035’ report commissioned by the Australian Government, there is no market over the next 20 years which offers more growth opportunities for Australian business than India. The strategy highlights opportunities for a range of private and public sectors, with the following five sectors facing the largest prospects:


Australian universities should reimagine more sustainable business models, leveraging online delivery to reach a larger international target market and help India achieve its massive education requirements. The ‘India Economic Strategy to 2035’ contemplates a consortium of Australian universities setting up in India.

Meanwhile, the same India’s elite educational institutions (IIMs/IITs) should be encouraged to establish a presence in Australia to maximise the impact of two way skills and capability development for even greater collaboration in areas of R&D and industry commercialisation.

Five key growth sectors for Australian businesses in India


The opportunities for Australian agricultural and premium produce exports to India are opening up with barley and a variety of fruits the latest developments. India is a massive market of young, health conscious, vegetarian consumers seeking high quality fresh and safe fruit and vegetables.

Indian beer makers may well welcome the opportunity to buy barley from Australia in a time where high tariffs in China are making exports less attractive. The current massive locust attack in India also highlights opportunities for Australia to help with crop protection solutions, and more broadly, methods for boosting crop productivity and yields. 


The third sector is resources and mining equipment, technology and services. India’s recent announcement to open up the mining sector for private participation will see the acceleration of new mining projects and Australian mining companies and players in the ecosystem are extremely well placed to participate.


Australia and India share competitive advantages in the areas of medical research and biotech which in the immediate term, could be focused on joint initiatives addressing the Covid-19 pandemic. The continuity and extension of the Australia India Strategic Research Fund will be critical for this purpose.

Australian organisations have opportunities to help India build up its healthcare system and implement new and innovative service and delivery models such as tele-health. Australian life sciences companies are also encouraged to explore how they might participate in the expansion of the Indian pharmaceuticals industry in a post Covid-19 world. 

Read also: India's eHealth market holds $16 billion opportunity. 


India has announced the further opening up of sectors such as aviation and power distribution utilities for private investment participation over and above roads and highways, ports and railways infrastructure. Australian superannuation funds should continue their exploration of alternative large scale and higher yielding infrastructure investments outside of traditionally favoured western markets.