President Barack Obama is in India this week. He spoke about lifting restrictions on Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail in India. India allows 51% FDI in single-brand retail. Foreign investment in multi-brand retail aka Wal-Mart kind stores is only allowed in wholesale.
Mr Obama, while addressing the US India Business Council summit in Mumbai on Saturday, Obama flirted with the issue that raises bogey in India by saying, “Here in India, many see the arrival of American companies and products as threats to small shopkeepers and to India’s ancient and proud culture. But these old stereotypes, these old concerns ignores today’s reality.”
“Going forward, commitment must be matched by steady reduction to barriers in trade and foreign investment from agriculture to infrastructure and from retail to telecommunications,” he said.