100-day agenda: DPIIT proposes to formulate national retail policy

New Delhi, May 29 (PTI) The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) has proposed to formulate a national retail policy to support growth of domestic trade, an official said. This proposal is part of the 100-day action plan prepared by the department, under the commerce and industry ministry, for the new government. "A national retail policy will be formulated to support development of the sector that would benefit 65 million small traders," the official said. In February, the subject of domestic or internal trade was shifted to DPIIT from the consumer affairs ministry, which was earlier the nodal agency for regulating the fast-growing sector. The department is already in the process of formulating guidelines on e-commerce and, hence, it would be appropriate for the ministry to come out with norms for retail trade, the official added. Views of all stakeholders, including state governments, would be taken while framing the policy as retail trade is also governed by the Shops and Establishment Act, which is implemented by states. Domestic traders' body Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) has time and again requested the government for the policy. It has said these steps will not only strengthen the domestic trade but also improve export performance of the country. According to CAIT, over 6.5 crore small businesses are engaged in the sector across the country. The demand for the policy from domestic traders came after multi-national retail firms entered the Indian markets and started providing huge discounts of goods. According to the action plan, large-scale programme for capacity building of managers of small businesses would be undertaken to improve productivity. PTI RR HRS