Govt falls flat on Retail FDI: No fresh proposal

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New Delhi, Feb 27: The UPA government continues to be optimistic on FDI in retail while it has failed to receive even one proposal in this sector.

In the Economic Survey 2013 released today in Parliament claims that "FDI in retail will pave the way for investment in new technology and marketing of agriculture produce." The survey also pitches for for further opening of sectors for FDI (foreign direct investment).

But the ground reality is starkly blank.

The Government on Tuesday said it has not received any proposal related to foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail so far.

"No proposal has been received for FDI in multi-brand retail," Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Minister K V Thomas said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.

After much political slugfest and parliamentary strategy the government had managed to get the approval of the parliament on the issue. Subsequently, it permitted FDI up to 51 per cent in the multi-brand retail trading last year.

Even the FDI in other sectors had slumped by 43.3 percent at $15.85 billion in April-November period of the current financial year as compared to $27.93 billion in the corresponding period previous year.

The Economic Survey said the overseas investment flows in top five services declined by 9.7 percent at $8.19 billion during the period under review.

Overall FDI inflows increased by 33.6 percent in 2011-12. Overseas investment inflows in services surged by 57.62 percent in the financial year ended March 31, 2012.

The document presented a day ahead of the Union Budget 2013-14 pointed out that the government has taken many policy initiatives to liberalise FDI policy for services sector.

"This includes increasing FDI limit from 49 percent to 74 percent in teleports and DTH and cable networks, permitting FDI up to 74 percent in mobile TV, up to 49 percent in scheduled and non-scheduled air transport services and up to 50 percent in multi-brand retail trading," it said.

"The government has also amended the existing policy on FDI in single brand product retail trading," it said.

OneIndia News

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