How to start export, import trade? Pawan Gupta, Connect2India founder, explains
Indian SME manufacturers are not able to export because of multiple reasons which include the challenge of finding and qualifying global trade counterparts
Pawan Gupta, founder and CEO of Connect2India, and an entrepreneur with expertise in global trade and technology in an email interview with Zee Business Online, talks about how to start export, import trade in India, various problems faced by the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) while exporting their goods.
1. What are the major pain points of Indian SME manufacturers looking to export?
Indian SME manufacturers are not able to export because of multiple reasons. For example, finding and qualifying global trade counterparts is a big challenge. Further, in the absence of any trade intelligence and detailed trade analytics, the cost of identifying the wrong target product, country or trade counterparts in global trade is really high.
Further, global trade barriers such as lack of reliable data on overseas markets, inability to contact potential overseas customers, unfamiliarity with export rules, procedures; documentation, lack of trained export staff for trade facilitation, difficulty in identifying foreign business opportunities, insufficient access to export finance etc. are difficult to overcome for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) with limited knowledge, information and resources available. Additionally, the lack of a credible platform to identify and verify global opportunities, limited access to trade intelligence and market research, and the high cost of trade information have been dissuading SMEs to enter into the unchartered territories of global markets.
At present there are only workarounds such as trade fairs, trade agencies, consulting companies, and market research companies etc. and these existing solutions/approaches are tactical, manual, expensive and prone to error with no focus on sustained or strategic growth.
2. How important is it for SMEs to get into global trade?
The government aims to bolster India’s march towards becoming a USD 5 trillion economy and boost Indian global trade to USD 2 trillion in the next few years. However, achieving such high growth will require exceptional structural changes in all sectors of the economy, especially the SME sector which is the backbone and lifeline of our economy.
3. What are the future opportunities for SME exporters in overseas trades?
According to WTO, the world export of WTO-member countries itself was at $24 trillion last year and is expected to grow 4 to 5 percent per year. This means, more demand in the global markets, which eventually means, more opportunities for SMEs to sell their product and take advantage of the vacuum between current supply and foreseen world demand.
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Though India is the world's fastest-growing economy, its contribution to global trade is just about $0.3 trillion/year. In spite of the government's strong focus on SMEs, less than 1 percent of 65 million Indian SMEs enter overseas markets because of challenges and complexities associated with these trades.
This percentage of SMEs exporting globally in developed countries is 20-25 percent. Similarly, only a fraction of more than 1000 million overseas SMEs trade with India because of lack of credible information on trade insights, trade resources and trade counterparts in India. This clearly indicates a huge market size and opportunities that are completely unaddressed as of now.
4. What solution do you provide and how does it benefit your customers?
Connect2India came up with a holistic approach to address the actual concerns of Indian SMEs by providing them with an integrated global trade platform, enabling and empowering them for end-to-end export/import. From initiating to executing trade orders successfully under a single roof, Connect2India offers a technology-driven integrated global trade platform with a focus on overall trade execution.
5. How to start export/import trade?
Connect2India bridges the knowledge gap and facilitates end-to-end export/import for SMEs with its global trade integrated platform, end-to-end export solutions and access to worldwide trade network.
To start an export/import trade, one can visit us at www.connect2india.com. As part of the packages, Connect2India offers end-to-end solutions including worldwide trade demand, trade analytics, product competitive analysis, finding trade counterparts, global visibility set-up, arranging and executing export/import orders, etc.
6. What output can an SME expect if once they get on board with you?
We enable SMEs to start and grow their export/import with our end-to-end solutions. The company’s single most important focus since the start has been on providing ‘value’; and that is what everyone at Connect2India strives towards delivering. Connect2India has a strong business fundamental to provide real tangible ‘value’ to their customers and enable extremely sophisticated trade functionality that is easy to use.
With our vision to be most trusted integrated global trade platform, Connect2India focuses on “100 percent customer success” as its core principles and ultimate business objectives to make global trade safe, easy, and smart for end-to-end export/import.