New Delhi: At a time when the Centre and the Opposition have locked their horns over the FDI reform in retail sector, the results of 100 percent FDI in setting cold storage in rural areas has not come as a promising step so far.

Estimating a total agriculture production during the 11th five-year plan and the current storage facility, the Central government granted permission for 100 percent Foreign Direct Investment. Ironically, storage house having capacity of 2.36 crore tonne only has been constructed which is used for storing potatoes.

Each year 10-15 percent of the total agriculture yield and 30-35 percent of fruits and vegetables are dumped near roadsides in absence of cold storage facility. According to estimates, government incurs Rs 10,000 crore loss owing to the lack of storage facility.

As per the government officials, main reason for poor response of FDI in cold storage sector is unattractive policy. Foreign companies are not keen to open cold storage for the sake of earning rent. Considering the drawback in this sector, the Centre has introduced 51 percent investment for FDI in retail which will force the foreign companies to open new storage facility in the country.

JPN/Bureau