Despite investment in the water sector expected to be $13 billion in the next few years alone, India is set to become a water-scarce country by 2025 due to demand-supply mis-match, according to a new report.
"India's demand for water is expected to exceed all current sources of supply and the country is set to become water scarce country by 2025.
With increasing household income and increasing contributions from the service and industrial sectors, the water demand in the domestic and industrial sectors increasing substantially," according to the study conducted by EA Water, a leading consulting firm in the water sector.
70 per cent of country's irrigation and 80 per cent of domestic water use comes from groundwater, which is being depleted at a frightening pace.
India's problem means opportunity for overseas players from Canada, Israel, Germany, Italy, United States, China and Belgium with over $13 billion forecast to be invested in the domestic water sector.
The country provides huge opportunities for investors across the spectrum of water infrastructure including both water supply and wastewater management.
The Indian state of Maharashtra has become the hub for the water sector, with over 12 international companies already setting up design and engineering centers in Mumbai and Pune.
Currently there are over 1,200 companies dealing in water and wastewater treatment in the state, mainly catering to small & medium sized businesses.
With the Modi government's planned investments in the water sector via the Ganga River Cleaning project, the Smart Cities initiative and the Swachh Bharat campaign, the industry also looks poised to create over 1 million jobs, the report found.
And yet opportunity for businesses will still not offset supply-demand mismatch for consumers, which will likely constrain India's economic growth and devastate its massive population.