'Govt opposes FDI in multi-brand retail'

'Govt opposes FDI in multi-brand retail'

Mechanisms in place to attract foreign investment: Sitharaman

'Govt opposes FDI in multi-brand retail'

Clearing government stand on foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retailing, Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday said the NDA government will not “entertain” FDI in multi-brand retail.

She said during Question Hour in Rajya Sabha that BJP got a massive mandate on the basis of its election manifesto which opposes FDI in multi-brand retail. 

However, the government has not initiated any move to scrap the policy of allowing FDI in multi-brand retail approved by the previous UPA government. 

“During the last three years FDI inflow has fluctuated. FDI inflow decreased by 26.33 per cent in 2012-13 and increased by 6.12 per cent in 2013-14,” she said.

FDI flow is dependent on the business environment and how decisions are made, she said, adding FDI inflow has been skewed in favour of Mauritius.

Automatic route

Mauritius accounted for $80.809 billion out of $222.89 billion that came to India between 2000 and 2014.

“We are using FIPB to carry out check (on investing companies),” she said.Even in sectors where FDI is allowed under automatic route, RBI scrutinises the funds flow, she said.

Reserve Bank of India and Department of Revenue through FIPB takes critical look at the kind of investment coming into India, she said.

On the implementation of the controversial GAAR tax, which is to come into effect from next fiscal, Sitharaman said government is “working” on the issue and decision when taken will be informed to the House. On steps taken to boost FDI, she said various set ups are in place to attract foreign investment. 

These include five joint commissions with Hungary, Poland, Sweden, Belarus and Libya and CEOs form with nations like Japan, France, Russia, Malaysia and South Africa.

India has also signed BIPA with 83 countries and CEPA with 9 countries, she said.