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CAIT bats for retail regulatory body
Jan '16
The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) has urged the Union Government to constitute a Retail Development & Regulatory Authority to boost structured growth of the country's retail trade which, it says, is suffering from various onslaughts within various verticals of retail trade.

"The Indian retail trade is the world's largest disaggregated private business ecosystem consisting of 57 million non corporate, self organised business enterprises in terms of brick and mortar shops.. Beside it has several other verticals like corporate retail, e-commerce, direct selling, wholesale cash & carry stores run by MNCs and others and in absence of any regulative mechanism one vertical is encroaching upon the domain of other vertical leading to state of confrontation. Taking into consideration vast potential of this sector, a Retail Development & Regulatory Authority is need of the hour," the CAIT said in a press release.

According to CAIT National President BC Bhartia and Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal, retail trade in India is often treated as an 'orphan child' with neither a policy nor a separate Ministry whereas other sectors of economy have specified policies and respective ministries at the Central level. Despite contributing 45 per cent to national GDP and being a major employment driver compared to other sectors, retail trade has not been even supported by credit from formal sources and operates outside the formal system.

No Government has ever taken retail sector on its priority. It is for the first time when Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi launched MUDRA yojna for financial inclusion of small businesses in India, they said.

The retail trade needs not only policy and financial inclusion but also need to be upgraded and modernised to meet global challenges and a Retail Development & Regulatory Authority can focus on systematic development of retail trade in India. The commercial markets across the country lack basic infrastructure despite doing extensive business and often face multiple problems. The Authority wouldl not only craft policies for development of retail trade but would also regulate the same in a cohesive manner, the release said.

Both Bhartia and Khandelwal said that a Parliamentary Standing Committee headed by senior BJP leader Dr. Murli Manohar Joshi had also recommended formation of Retail Regulatory Authority in its report submitted to Parliament in 2008 but so far no action has been taken on his recommendation. (SH)

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