In my globe-trotting, I have come to the following conclusion: the three things that an emerging market needs to get recgonised as an interesting destination for tourists and investment are good Airports, good Roads and Malls. Airports and Roads are obvious. Airports seem as the entry point and the first impression of a country. Roads – who wants bumpy rides? Also, the lack of good roads can make one think: “what kind of a country is this if they cannot even build proper roads”. Malls is perhaps the surprise in the triad – I think seeing Malls with global brands gives one the confidence that the city/country has been “ratified” by the world’s majors, so it makes one feel that much more comfortable.
Bangkok, China, Beijing have all three. None of the Indian cities have any of the above. That is one (simplistic) explanation of why China gets the FDI and India doesn’t.