Communists ask government not to allow FDI in multi-brand retail

New Delhi, May 25 (IANS) Two opposition communist parties Tuesday asked the government not to allow foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail, saying it would jeopardise the livelihood of lakhs of people.

‘It is strange that the United Progressive Alliance government is contemplating this step when the Congress party itself has taken a stand against the entry of foreign companies in retail trade as stated in its resolution in the AICC session held in Hyderabad in 2006,’ the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) and the Communist Party of India (CPI) said in a joint statement here.

The statement came after a newspaper reported that the commerce and industry ministry is considering to propose 100 percent foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail but with stiff sourcing requirements.

The two parties said retail trade in the country employed lakhs of people, whose livelihood would be adversely affected if multinationals like Walmart and Tesco were allowed into the retail trade.

‘A wide spectrum of political parties, retail trade associations and public opinion is against such a move. The UPA government should desist from allowing FDI in multi-brand retail trade,’ they said.

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