Retail in Asia

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Retail chains’ hope in India’s FDI raised by petrol price increase

The recent decision by India’s state-owned oil marketing companies to increase petrol prices steeply has raised hopes of retail chains, which expects the government will now initiate steps to take the long-pending decision on allowing foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail.

The oil companies raised petrol prices by INR7.50 (USD0.13) on last Wednesday, a tough but unpopular decision which many see as a strong signal from the government that it’s now stepping on the reform pedal.

Many of the retail chains, which have been on a silent mode for months, sent out feelers on Thursday that all was not lost on the FDI front. In another indication that things could be moving, India head of French retail chain Carrefour SA, Jean Noel Bironneau met Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma on Thursday. Carrefour is one of the chains waiting for the government’s decision on FDI in multi-brand retail.