Friday, December 30, 2011

ASHA opposes FDI in Retail

ASHA opposes FDI in Retail, on the following grounds:
That there is no evidence from elsewhere to show that big foreign retail will benefit local farmers or consumers; or will increase employment opportunities; or keep investments in the country by restricting outflows;
That the Indian situation warrants a good appreciation of the positive aspects of the current retail structure (like agricultural production, retailing also has traditionally been a community affair here) and any inefficiencies in these supply chains, or lack of infrastructure has to be addressed by the government in other ways since the FDI proposals have no mechanisms of ensuring this;
That food inflation too has to be tackled by other means, and FDI in retail cannot be made the destructive false means for this problem;
That such policy initiatives will in fact destroy millions of livelihoods including of farmers and create monopolies (including with agri-input giants and trading giants sharing the profits with big foreign retailers), leaving very few choices for farmers and consumers and very little control in their hands;
That this will lead to unsustainable production and consumption styles which completely negate the availability of alternatives within India. ASHA opposes any such policy moves by the government and its arguments are presented in this position paper.

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