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Get picky on emerging markets: Goldman Sachs

Global investors need to rethink their exposure to emerging markets, according to Sheila Patel, CEO of Goldman Sachs Asset Management International, who sees increasing divergence between the developing nations and their potential for economic success.

Speaking to CNBC at the Global Financial Markets Forum in Abu Dhabi, she said the investment bank was concentrating their portfolio on the behemoths of India and China, paying particular attention to the former.

"There's been lots and lots of disappointments over the years but we're at a very, very interesting time in both countries," she said. "India is probably where China was in the early 2000s."

Adam Jeffery | CNBC

Over the weekend, India's Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, presented a new budget for the south Asian country alongside his Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. Modi is seen as being pro-reformist, but rather than a "big bang" approach, he has used more stable strategies with plans to modernize India's railways and roads, and also allow more public spending.

Patel said the country also had an "amazing" young demographic, with the average age in India 27, according to the World Factbook by the Central Intelligence Agency. By contrast, many other emerging markets are battling with aging populations, which is considered a headwind.

Patel added that a slower, "boil the frog" approach in India would be more beneficial for long-term growth than rapid changes that have been undertaken in some other countries.

"Modi's reform do seem to be catching the eye of global investors and talking hold," she said.