Mumbai, Jan 17 (IANS) A day after belittling Amazon’s billion dollar investment, Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal on Friday clarified that government welcomes all kinds of investments into the country which are within the ambit of the law.
“We welcome all kinds of investments that follow the letter and spirit of the law. If some investment is outside the legal purview, appropriate action will be taken,” he told reporters.
“Our government wants to ensure that unfair competition is not created for crores of small traders and retailers of the country,” Goyal said
He said that negative connotations have been inferred from his comments on Amazon’s investments which are unfounded, since, he was only referring to the fact that investments should be made but it should be within the ambit of the law.
On Thursday, Goyal during a multilateral conference in New Delhi said that e-commerce firm Amazon was not doing “India a great favour” by investing $1 billion in the country.
He had said that India allows e-commerce companies to work on the marketplace model, where buyers and sellers are free to buy and sell and follow the rules of the marketplace and laws of the country, which clearly say that FDI in multi-brand retail will only be allowed up to 49 per cent.
“… Secondly, they may have put in a billion dollars but then, if they make a loss of a billion dollars every year, they will jolly well have to finance that billion dollars,” he replied to a question during a panel discussion at the event.
“So, it is not as if they are doing a great favour to India when they invest a billion dollars,” he said.
However, the minister wondered as to how a company employing the e-commerce market-place model makes massive losses.
He said that such losses raise questions, whether the company indulged in predatory pricing or other unfair trade practices.
The minister’s statement assumes significance since Amazon’s global CEO Jeff Bezos has announced a $1 billion worth of investment into India.