No more easing of norms in multi-brand retail: Sharma

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SummaryAnand Sharma said that any policy will take time to fructify into investments

Expressing hope that foreign players will invest in multi-brand retail, commerce and industry minister Anand Sharma said on Saturday that any policy will take time to fructify into investments, while ruling out further concessions on sourcing norms.

“In single-brand retail also, it took almost a year for actual investments to come. We are confident that multi-brand will also bring in foreign players," Sharma told reporters while returning from Indonesia as part of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s delegation.

Asked if the government would make additional concessions to attract foreign investors in multi-brand retailing, Sharma said, “Any policy needs to be given some time to fructify into investment."

Commenting on the Bahrti, Walmart split, he said, “While it is for Walmart to comment on its partnership issues, the impression I have got is they want to remain invested in India," adding, “They have committed to invest in back-end retail business on their own, while for front-end retail, they will look for another partner."

On sourcing norms, he said any policy cannot be company-specific. “The norms have already have been eased, but the policy also needs to safeguard the interests of SMEs and domestic industry,” he said.

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