No proposal from foreign cos on FDI in multi-brand retail trading: Govt

Amidst government facing criticism from opposition parties on FDI in multi-brand retail, it has yet to receive any proposal from foreign retailers to set up stores in India.

"No proposal has been received in multi-brand retail trading," Minister of State for Commerce and Industry S Jagathrakshakan has said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.

Although the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion has notified 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail on September 14, the RBI aligned the FEMA rules.

The FEMA rules have since been tabled in the Lok Sabha and the opposition demanding that they require approval of both the houses of Parliament.

On the other hand, Parliament Affairs Minister Kamal Nath has said that approval of only one house is adequate to give effect to the policy.

In an another reply, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry D Purandeswari said that the US and Turkey have raised concerns on the fresh subsidies recently provided by India to textiles and apparel sector despite India achieving export competitiveness in this sector.

"US have sought bilateral consultation with India on this issue," Purandeswari said.

However, she added that as per provisions of Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (ASCM), developing countries like India can maintain export subsidies as its gross national product per capita is less than USD 1,000 per annum.

As per the calculations released by the WTO committee on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures, India reached Gross National Income (GNI) per capita of USD 926 in 2010, she said. She also said as per provisions, export competitiveness in a product exists if a developing country's share has at least 3.25 per cent in world trade of that item for two consecutive calender years.

"As per the WTO Secretariat's computation made available in March 2010, India has crossed the threshold of 3.25 per cent in 2005 and 2006 in the textile and apparel sector," she added.

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