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Insights 2017

Surinder Shukla: In pursuit of strengthening Canada-India corridor

Interface between business, higher education and Research: Locating development   and Trends in Canada- India Partnership

ICCC can offer an uncommon combination of higher education research and marketing experience knowledge of institution- specific needs due to fostering bilateral trade between Canada and India, and creating economic opportunities for the 1.2 million Canadians of Indian origin. A process that is at least forty years old. There is a need to address, locate policies, strategies and consequences for taking Canada- India partnership forward.   This has special significance as ‘New India ‘is being formed under the leadership of India’s Prime Minister Namenda Mode.

Locating development in India the trend can be picked up for mutual strengthening process of Canada-India Corridor. There are many reasons for Canada- India collaboration:

Large Population;
India has large population of 1.8 billion people; expected to surpass China’s population by 2025
Largest Youth Population in the world driving demand: At 235 million between ages 15 and 24 India has the largest youth population in the world, creating huge demand for higher education and research

Not enough supply: The Education Minister estimates that India, currently with 500 universities, needs an additional 1000-1500 colleges and universities over the next ten years to meet the demand of higher education.

English Proficiency; India ranks second after the US with 232 million English speakers, eliminating the usual international issues of English proficiency
Significant purchasing power and growing affluence: India’s affluent households are expected to grow rapidly to three million by 2015, and to over nine million by 2025
Rapid education spending growth: Expected to grow at 11.1 % annually to approximately $ 128 by 2025.

Clearly a greater collaboration for higher education and research is imminent for strengthening Canada-India Corridor and the thrust areas of higher education and research taken forward.


Both Canada and India are distant neighbors in the global geographic locale. Yet there is a ‘connect’ between Canada and India through the diaspora, which has provided the much needed manpower to Canada.

Documentaries by Dr David Gray Canadian Soldier Sikhs (2011)  ( tells the story of ten Sikh men who enlisted in  the Canadian Army in World War I )

Lumbar Lions (2012)
(tracing the involvement of the Sikhs in the British Columbia Lumbar industry)

Reveal a deep connect between Canada and India.

Echoes of the past need to be interpreted for the future by negotiating transnational


This will help strengthen Canada- India Corridor irrespective of the over-arching geopolitical compulsions of the two giants.

Canada-India Trade

Canada-India relations are the long-standing bilateral relations between Canada and India built on mutual commitment to democracy, pluralism and people – to – people links.

In 2009 the bilateral trade between Canada and India was about C$ 4.14 billion.

India accounts for less than 1% of Canada’s total export and total import in 2014, with bilateral trade of C$ 5.77 billion in 2014 as compared to China’s C$ 56 billion bilateral trade

Canada’s Merchandise Trade with India 2015


Canada has three focus areas – food, agriculture and post- harvest processing, energy and international education especially with Punjab and Haryana which share a common synergy with Canada.

India ranks among the 13 priority partners. Inbuilt complementarities of both countries offer innumerable opportunities.

Medicines, garments, diamonds, chemicals, gems and jeweler, petroleum oils are exported from India. More common needs of the two countries need to be addressed.

Research on issues relating to Canada-India trade needs to be extended from national level to state level for unlocking the potential of Canada- India partnership at ICCC by collaborating data with Indian Chambers of Commerce, both at national and state level.

Despite the warm relationship trade between Canada and India is less than their potential and this can make strides if the thrust areas of research are addressed.

Issues of Climate Change:

Risks and uncertainties due to extremes and resource variability needs to be addressed in the context of Canada-India relations in the emerging new world.

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