Pvt mandis on the streets in 18 months

City to be first in country to bring FDI in retail

The Capital is likely to become the first state in the country to welcome foreign companies in retail. If all goes as per the plan, Delhi may witness the opening of private mandis in the next 18 months. And farmers can sell their produce directly to the foreign companies after signing a contract.

At present, Delhi mandis are being operated as per the Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee (Regulation) Act 1988, but the city government is on the verge of completing amendments in the act to facilitate foreign direct investment in retail. The provision of private mandis for multinational companies and direct purchase from farmers will be the important features of the new amended draft bill.

Once the Delhi Agricultural Produce Marketing (Regulation) (Amendment) Bill 2012 gets the Cabinet’s approval, it will be sent to the Central government for its clearance.

“After the approval of FDI in Parliament, no one should have any doubt about its need for our economy. We are making amendments in APMC Act and our mandis will be the first to witness entry of foreign companies,” said public works department minister Raj Kumar Chauhan.

“Any foreign company will be able to buy whatever quantity it wants directly from farmers at these mandis,” said Chauhan, who is the in-charge of mandis in the city.

He added that the introduction of FDI in retail is the choice of state government and chief minister Sheila Dikshit has already announced that it will set an example in country by being the first to welcome MNCs like Wal-Mart and Tesco in retail. “To bring in FDI in retail is the prerogative of the state and since the trade licenses are granted by the city government, foreign retailers cannot set up shops without its permission,” said Chauhan.  
“Once the APMC Act is amended, we will not only open doors to these companies but also set up private mandis for the benefit of all.” The setting up of private mandis will end the practice of one per cent market fees that is paid by the buyer to the APMC, he added. There will be a direct link between the buyer and seller and no place for middlemen.

There will be no unnecessary rise in prices of products, said Chauhan. A city government official said the discussions are on to set up a world class mandi at Tikri Khanpur which will have international facilities.

Comments (+)