New Delhi: Walmart Stores Inc, the world's largest retailer, is in no hurry to open retail stores in the country, even as the Central Government has allowed 51 percent Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail. The company is waiting for clarity on this issue from political parties.

Walmart and other Indian retail companies are planning to meet with the Chief Ministers on this issue as the Central Government has put the ball in the court of state governments to permit opening of foreign funded stores.

Walmart India head, Raj Jain told Dainik Jagran that Retailers Association of India (RAI) will hold meeting with Chief Ministers in this regard very soon.

The meetings aim at changing the perception on systematic retail business and to ask the states that retail business is not against the interests of farmers and customers. They will also convince the Chief Ministers that how FDI in multi brand retail will increase the states’ revenue and help farmers to get better price for their products.

In response to a query on opening Walmart outlet in India, Jain said that it will take at least 18 moths. He also told that by the time we execute our plans, the next elections will be over and it will be clear that which party will form the next government at Centre.

When asked on the delay of opening stores, Jain said that before opening the outlets, we need to do lots of work for the same. He further added that the selection of space is also important; we need to create whole supply structure and to work on that format. Jain said that it will take at least 3-4 years to change the current situation of Indian retail industry.

Speaking on the Walmart policies, Jain said that according to current government norms, we can only open stores in 53 cities which mean foreign retailers can only serve to the 11 percent of the total population of this country.

Apart from this, Walmart is facing many more challenges. The company is planning to open 10 to 50 thousand square feet outlets and that is a big challenge. So far we got space in 2-3 cities.


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