Today, Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal said, the government will clear Amazon’s proposed $500 million investment in retail food products in India.
Badal said, “There was some delay due to abolition of Foreign Investment Promotion Board. It (Amazon’s proposal) will soon be cleared.”
The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) will now vet the United States retail giant Amazon’s proposal under the Commerce Ministry With the abolition of the FIPB. Badal said that more investment in food processing sector is the need of the hour to reduce the huge wastage during post harvesting and transportation.
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By adding that the new technology, processes, products and markets will be brought, she said that India, the world’s largest producer of vegetables and fruits, have very low processing level at 10%.
The government had received investment proposals of worth $695 million for retail of food products from three companies Amazon, Grofers and Big Basket. US-based retail giant Amazon is one of the major e-commerce players in India, Big Basket and Grofers are into online grocery space.
Amazon has proposed to invest about $500 million in retail of food products. Last year the government had allowed 100% foreign direct investment (FDI) by approval route for trading, including through e-commerce, in respect of food products manufactured and produced in India.
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The food processing sector in the country received foreign direct investment of $663.23 million in April to December of 2016-17. Last month the Union Cabinet had decided to wind up the 25 year old FIPB which had been vetting FDI proposals requiring government approval to expedite the clearance process.
The ministries concerned will approve the proposals, under the new mechanism, as per the standards operating procedure that approved by the Union Cabinet.
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