New Delhi: The Government would hold more consultations with State governments to build consensus on allowing foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said Friday while presenting the budget for 2012-13 in parliament.
“The decision in respect of allowing FDI in multi-brand retail trade up to 51 percent, subject to compliance with specified conditions, has been held in abeyance. Efforts are on to arrive at a broad-based consensus in consultation with the state governments,” Mukherjee said.
The Government was last year forced to hold back its decision to allow overseas investment in multi-brand retail following widespread political opposition even from key allies of the ruling United Progressive Alliance.
Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma said he would soon hold consultations with all the chief ministers for a consensus on the issue.
“Efforts are on to arrive at a broad-based consensus in respect of decision to allow FDI in multi-brand retail up to 51 percent,” Sharma said.
The Economic Survey 2011-12 released Thursday called for opening of multi-brand retail segment in a phase manner, beginning with metropolitan cities.
At present, FDI in single brand and in cash and carry wholesale trade is permitted to the extent of 100 percent.