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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Govt formally opens supermarket sector to foreign chains
Guwahati (Capital of Assam) might be having the 1st Wall Mart/ Carrefour Store in the entire North East or may be in entire Eastern India, as both West Bengal and Bihar/Jharkand opposed. I am calling upon my friends in Assam (North East) to give this superb news.....!!
NEW DELHI: Showing resolve for reforms, the government on Thursday notified its decision to allow global retail giants like Wal-Mart to open stores in India, on a day several political parties called Bharat bandh to protest against the policy.
With this notification, multinational retailers can invest up to 51 per cent to open stores in 10 states and UTs which, till date, have agreed to implement the decision.
"51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retailing, in all products, will be permitted ... " a notification by the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) said. It said the decision will take immediate effect.
The DIPP also operationalised September 14 Cabinet decisions to relax the sourcing norms for foreign retailers investing beyond 51 per cent in single-brand retail and allow 49 per cent FDI by foreign airlies in the domestic carriers.
Besides, the decisions on permitting 49 per cent FDI in power exchanges and increase in foreign equity cap from 49 per cent to 74 per cent in the service providers like DTH in broadcasting sector have also been notified.
In the most controversial area of FDI in multi-brand, the DIPP said the state governments and UTs would be free to take their own decisions.
"Therefore, retail sales outlets may be set up in those States\UTs which have agreed, or agree in future, to allow FDI in MBRT (multi-brand retail trading) under this policy".
Minimum amount to be brought in by the foreign investor would be USD 100 million and outlets may be set up only in cities with a population of more than 10 lakh.
At least 50 per cent of FDI should be invested in 'back-end infrastructure' within three years of the first tranche.
To protest against the government's decision, NDA, Left and SP called Bharat Bandh. The parties were also protesting against the diesel price hike and cap on subsidised LPG.
India Inc euphoric:
Hailing the Centre's decision to implement FDI in multi-brand retail, the industry today said this will give a strong message to investors that the government means business and stands firm on its initiatives.
Industry body Assocham complimented the government on its firm decision on economic reforms.
"This will give a strong message to investors inside as well as outside the country that the government means business," Assocham secretary general D S Rawat said.
The politicians must distinguish between politics and economics in the interest of the country. Though not much investments will be flowing from investors immediately but the message it carried is huge, he added.
The government today notified FDI in multi-brand retail operationalizing the Cabinet decision.
The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion also operationalized September 14 Cabinet decisions to relax the sourcing norms for foreign retailers investing beyond 51 per cent in single-brand retail and allow 49 per cent FDI by foreign airlines in the domestic carriers.
Besides, the decisions on permitting 49 per cent FDI in power exchanges and increase in foreign equity cap from 49 per cent to 74 per cent in the service providers like DTH in broadcasting sector have also been notified.
The development comes on a day when a nation-wide bandh was called by BJP, Left parties and UPA's outside supporter SP to protest diesel price hike and FDI in multi-brand retail evoked mixed response with life and trade being disrupted in some states.
CII said it is important to stay on track on reforms. "The entire decision on multi-brand retail will go a long-way in capital infusion in the country and also leads to strengthening of linkages including benefits to farmers," CII director general Chandrajit Banerjee said.
This is an important reform for India for both growth and development, he added.