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Great post, IM, but just one counterpoint that I need to make regarding Square's opportunity in India. Why you mention Burma is a mystery to me although at least you've been there so good for you!

There are many problems dealing with India which is tending towards the side of protectionism, as identified in this report from the USTR.:

https://ustr.gov/sites/default/files/2019_National_Trade_Est...

It's a long read, but I believe that the salient points regarding Square are detailed on page 260.

"India has recently promulgated a number of data localization requirements that would serve as significant barriers to digital trade between the United States and India. These requirements raise costs for suppliers of data-intensive services by forcing the construction of unnecessary, redundant data centers and prevent local firms from taking advantage of the best global services available.
In October 2018, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) implemented a requirement that all payment service
suppliers store all information related to electronic payments by Indian citizens on servers located in India.
RBI announced this rule in April without advance notice and without input from stakeholders. Requiring local storage of all payment information raises costs for payment service suppliers, and disadvantages foreign firms, which are more likely to be dependent on globally distributed data storage and information security systems. Furthermore, an only-in-India data storage requirement will hamper the ability of service
suppliers to detect fraud and ensure the security of their networks.
In July 2018, the Indian government published a draft Personal Data Protection Bill. If passed into law, the bill would impose onerous burdens on firms, especially foreign firms, that process personal information.
Most concerning is a data localization requirement: firms would be required to store a copy of all personal information related to Indian persons on a server located in India, and an as-yet-undefined category of “critical” personal information could not be transferred out of India under any circumstances. These data localization provisions would damage the digital economy without supporting privacy. Additionally, the bill would authorize immense fines and criminal penalties in response to data breaches."

So basically this is a very risky proposition for Square.

If anyone can enlighten me why they would be exempt from all these rules and the seemingly random changes forthwith then please educate me.

Cheers, PB.
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