Modi’s big business push in China is all about power

Now China, come make in India.
Now China, come make in India.
Image: Reuters/Aly Song
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After two days of sightseeing, selfies and some hard-nosed diplomatic wrangling, Indian prime minister Narendra Modi’s three-day visit to China has finally yielded some commercial rewards: 26 business agreements worth $22 billion (Rs1.4 lakh crore).

The deals were signed in Shanghai on May 16, as Modi met Chinese industry leaders including e-commerce giant Alibaba’s Jack Ma, Xiaomi’s Lin Bin and Huawei’s Sun Yafang.

The prime minister was also accompanied by a contingent of Indian industrialists and bankers.

While India emphasised that this was “a reflection of the strong interest of Chinese companies to invest in India,” the fact remains that many of these agreements are largely an expression of intent and it will take some time—and significant groundwork—before they translate into actual investments.

And the big winner in the deal jamboree—10 were specified as memoranda of understanding (MoUs), while the rest were partnerships—was India’s power sector.

Of the agreements signed, the maximum were between companies in the power sector, with a total of eight deals. The agreements, if and when they materialise, will bode well for India’s ailing power sector, where companies are struggling with huge losses, poor infrastructure and limited finance.

Here’s the sector-wise break-up of the deals:

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