The FDI Story

The Govern­ment has re­cently al­lowed 100% FDI in Sin­gle Brand Retail via the au­to­matic route. Kash­mira Mirza and Amanda D’Souza speak to the Stake­hold­ers to know their views on this.

Apparel - - Contents -

Ex­hibitors at the 66th NGF talk about the in­tro­duc­tion of FDI in SBR

“I think the FDI in sin­gle brand retail is a very good step. A lot of in­ter­na­tional brands who would like to in­vest in In­dia wouldn’t face any bot­tle­neck of get­ting stuck with a lo­cal part­ner and won’t have to re­sort to lo­cal sourc­ing. They would, there­fore, be able to func­tion to their full po­ten­tial. It gets healthy com­pe­ti­tion in the coun­try. For brands like mine, which are not very lo­cal in taste, it works well. We’re not into small de­tail­ing. When con­sumers see that our prod­ucts are sim­i­lar in qual­ity and taste to the in­ter­na­tional brands; yet priced at much more af­ford­able rates, they will nat­u­rally grav­i­tate to­wards our prod­ucts. I would wel­come this kind of healthy com­pe­ti­tion in the In­dian mar­ket.”

AB­HISHEK BARI­YAR, Ric­o­chet

“FDI in sin­gle brand retail would be chal­leng­ing for play­ers like us. If you look at a mar­ket like China, it has so many mech­a­nisms in place to sup­port its do­mes­tic busi­nesses against for­eign com­pe­ti­tion. In­dian play­ers don’t mind the com­pe­ti­tion, but we should also have solid in­fra­struc­ture in place for gar­ment hubs, and give lo­cal brands a plat­form that helps sus­tain our busi­ness. You’re putting us in com­pe­ti­tion with brands that have a legacy of 150 years and you’re not only ask­ing us to com­pete with such en­trants, but also keep pay­ing taxes, keep em­pow­er­ing the na­tion, keep cre­at­ing jobs – all with­out sup­port. This is not pos­si­ble with­out the in­fra­struc­ture that al­lows for healthy com­pe­ti­tion. We have al­ways been a labour ori­ented coun­try, con­sid­ered good for ex­ports. Times are chang­ing now, though, and we are be­ing urged to ex­port be­cause our do­mes­tic mar­ket is cur­rently huge. 100 per cent FDI will be tough on small play­ers. If we had gar­ment hubs and tech­no­log­i­cal hubs that en­abled di­rect sourc­ing, and events like the Na­tional Gar­ment Fair were con­ducted more reg­u­larly and on a larger scale, In­dian busi­nesses would thrive. We could cut on a lot of mid­dle­men in the process and cre­ate di­rect ben­e­fits for hard­work­ing mer­chants.”

SHEKHAR MUKHERJI, King and I

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