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Mumbai terrorist attacks - Indian outsourcing concerns

Cliff Saran

IT directors should think twice before sending staff out to India over the next few weeks, following the attacks yesterday on UK and US citizens in Mumbai, the National Outsourcing Association (NoA) has warned.

According to news reports today the death toll in the Mumbai terror attacks has reached around 100.

See our Live updates: Mumbai attack - outsourcing impact

India is the most popular destination for offshore outsourcing. High-tech companies including Microsoft, Accenture and Cisco have labs in India and many UK companies use Indian outsourcers like Tata Consulting Services, for offshore software development.

Mark Kobayashi-Hillary, a board director at the NoA, said, "There is a period of unrest in India due to the build up to the next general election, which takes place in a few months. India is a safe place, but there has always been violence in places like Kashmir. I would think twice about travelling to India at the moment."

The attack probably has not damaged India's reputation as a destination for outsourcing.

Sridhar Vedala, the lead from Global Sourcing Practice at Equaterra, said, "While Mumbai is still tense I don't see that this [attack] will have serious impact on outsourcing in terms of business continuity, although the perception of India as a sourcing destination overall might have been affected in the longer term."

The Foreign Office said, "There is a high threat of terrorism throughout India. Attacks have targeted public places. They have also targeted places frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers, most recently in Delhi, Ahmedabad and Bangalore."

For the latest travel advice go to the Foreign Office website.

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