New Prime Minister Could Usher in a New Era For India

New Prime Minister Could Usher in a New Era For India

05.19.14 | By John Castellani

Last week, after an election process that took more than a month to complete with a record 550 million votes cast, the Indian people elected a new Prime Minister in a landslide election that unseated the country’s ruling Congress party.  Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won enough seats in the lower house of Parliament to form a government.

The incoming Modi government represents an excellent opportunity for American industries to strengthen and rekindle their relationships with India. While Prime Minister-elect Modi certainly has his work cut out for him on many issues facing his nation, we look forward to collaborating with India on ways to improve our partnerships in one of the world’s most dynamic and fastest-growing markets.

Modi’s party campaigned on a pro-business platform in an effort to open the country up to more foreign direct investment and re-position it as the global trading power it once was.  The effects of Modi’s government will impact not only India but also the entire global economy, as India is the world’s third largest economy and its largest democracy. Upon news of his election, there were immediate positive economic effects with the Indian stock market up 6% and the Indian rupee reaching an 11-month high. Additionally, companies have been preparing for the improvements that can be achieved through Modi’s rule. 

Research-based biopharmaceutical companies see much potential for Mr. Modi’s success, because he understands the crucial role innovation plays in economic development.  His party’s platform specifically mentions the need for a strong intellectual property (IP) regime in order to “maximize the incentive for generation", while also outlining a vision for a healthcare system that improves quality and access. While many different sectors have had disagreements with India in the past, Mr. Modi’s perspective on these issues represents an opportunity for a fresh start.  By prioritizing IP rights, a constant cycle of innovation in India could be created that will help sustain India’s economy for years to come.

Above all, the Indian people stand to benefit the most from the new economy envisioned by Mr. Modi, as they will ultimately be the beneficiaries of better access to safe, innovative treatments. That, coupled with Mr. Modi’s goal to revolutionize India’s beleaguered healthcare system, including ways to better deliver care in rural areas through mobile services and telemedicine, will help patients throughout India fully realize the potential of modern medicine.

PhRMA and its member companies would like to congratulate Prime Minister-elect Modi on his historic victory, which heralds a promising new chapter for India. We are eager to begin working with the new government to strengthen the biopharmaceutical industry’s relationship with India in order to increase access to medications for Indian citizens.

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