As reports circulate that the Indian Government is about to put the highly politicised and emotive issue of foreign direct investment in the retail sector on the back burner, the world’s largest retailer is chomping at the bit to make inroads into this emerging market.

Wal-Mart’s Beth Cack told just-food yesterday (5 July) that the company is eager to capitalise on the opportunities it has identified in the Indian market. “Our view is that India is an outstanding emerging retail market. We do hope to have the opportunity to operate and compete there,” she said.

But Wal-Mart and other global retailers are prohibited from entering the Indian market by regulations governing foreign direct investment (FDI) in the retail sector. Earlier this year, Indian legislators decided to allow up to 51% foreign ownership of single-brand companies, however global retailers, such as Wal-Mart, are still blocked from entering the market.

Hopes that this situation would change were aroused by news that the government was debating the possible liberalisation of these restrictions, with an eye to fostering the development of a modern retail sector. However, reports have surfaced that the issue of market liberalisation, which has sparked widespread debate within the country, will be sidestepped by ministers. Legislators are pinning their ambition to modernise on investments from Indian entrepreneurs, such as Reliance, Bharti and Pantaloon.

Nevertheless, if and when the market is opened to international competition, Wal-Mart is ready to fill the breach and the retailer hopes that this will happen sooner rather than later.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

“In various other emerging markets we have seen the benefits that international competition has brought to consumers. We hope that the Indian Government will see the value that this could bring Indian consumers and allow ourselves and other international retailers to enter the market at some point in time,” Cack concluded.