Category: Bureaucracy Today

FDI in retail – a flawed idea

In the Union Budget for 2016-17, the Finance Minister had announced 100% foreign direct investment (FDI) in retail food. This was subject to the retailer selling only food procured from farmers in India and processed locally. However, guidelines in this regard are yet to be notified. Meanwhile, the Government is reportedly considering a proposal to allow 100% FDI in all goods “manufactured domestically”. The policy will be applicable to both offline (brick-and-mortar retailers) and online (e-commerce companies). The idea is flawed. At the outset, a few words on the existing policy dispensation on the FDI in retail. For this purpose, retail is classified in two broad categories, viz, single-brand retail (SBR) and multi-brand retail (MBR). In the SBR, 100% FDI...
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Was Modi’s demonetisation a flop show?

When the demonetisation of Rs1,000 and Rs 500 notes was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8, 2016, the expectation was that about Rs 350,000 – 400,000 lakh crore out of a total Rs 15,44,000 lakh crore (embedded in these notes) would not come to banks. This was taken to mean tremendous success of this policy decision. On the one hand this would tantamount to sternest punishment to hoarders of black money (via junking all of their illegal wealth – accumulated over the years – to a worthless piece of paper) and on the other this would give a bonanza to the Reserve Bank of India by way of extinguishing its liabilities to the extent of amount not...
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