The Ministry of Food Processing Industries has reportedly urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to consider 100 per cent foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail of food products.
Union Food Processing Industries Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal has suggested for a “relook” at the country’s FDI policy in multi-brand retail in food processing, in a letter to the PM.
“The letter has been forwarded to the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), which is looking at the issue,” said a report by PTI.
The BJP-led NDA government is opposed to allowing FDI in multi-brand retailing, but it has not yet scrapped the policy approved by the previous UPA regime.
The multi-brand retail segment in India employees millions and is dominated by neighbourhood stores typically operated by families.
Badal said permitting 100 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail of food products produced and manufactured in India would give the much needed fillip to the sector.
It would also help in development of infrastructure such as cold chains that are critical for the food processing sector.
The move would benefit farmers with increased price realisation, reduction in wastages, job creation, besides acting as an incentive for global players in the sector to start operations in India, she wrote.
The government is taking several steps to attract foreign investments in the country. Last year, it has relaxed norms in various sectors including defence, construction and single brand retailing.