So Dhiman babu,
Your opposition to FDI in retail seems to be more about Walmart than the idea of retail giants operating in India? Or do you think global retail starts with Walmart and ends with the company that Sam Walton built?
You seem to forget that there are other successful retail chains out there who don’t have Walmart’s “reputation”.
What India needs is 24x7 running water and electricity to all the farmers in India. Do that and I assure you, you would fundamentally revolutionize agriculture in India.
Is Walmart going to import electricity and water from US for running their cold storage?
Sorry to have to say this but this is a typical strawman argument. Providing water and electricity to each Indian is a subject in itself and I’m surprised that you bring this into a discussion on building supply chains.
Let’s say each agriculturist in India was provided with water and electricity, how do you propose to ensure that they would be able to pay for it without improving their incomes? And do you think once you do provide them with electricity and water then the cold storages and refrigerated trucks will magically appear in India?
You may need that, but India doesn’t
And says who? Dhiman Babu?
It’s not a question of what I need or not (though I’d be happy with some rational thinking and less rhetorical arguments, but choro). It’s a question of what is needed on the ground to prevent 30 per cent of Indian agricultural output being wasted every year on account of lack of adequate storage or ability to move the stuff to the markets. You talk a lot and write huge posts but I haven't seen you come up with an idea of how to cut the loss? Have you?
Completely false. For a massive super-efficient supply chain you need massive super efficient infrastructure. Is walmart going to build "massive super-efficient" roads and railways in India?
Another strawman. You confuse public infrastructure like roads and electric power plants with private infra like cold storages, depots and refrigerated trucks? Or are you from the old Stalinist school which thinks all these should be the preserve of the GoI as well?
Walmart's wholesale outlet in Jalandhar has already cut the sales of hundreds of shopkeepers by 40%. Who is going to put food on their table while you get your food from cold storage?
I think you’ll excuse me if I don’t take your word for it. Please provide the evidence that hundreds of shopkeepers have had their business curtailed by the precise 40 per cent figure you mentioned and all that is due to Walmart
While you’re at it I’d request you to glance at this
blog, particularly this part:
And so this whole “They will come and wipe us out” is just a load of panic-mongering. What will likely happen to Walmart and the larger chains is exactly what happened to McDonalds. Like McDonalds, Walmart will not be a player in the lowest segment of the market where traditional local stores, the “little guys” whom everyone is crying for, will be safe.They will have a largely urban presence and minimal penetration in the backwaters and villages where the little store selling Exide Batteries, Nirodh Condoms and Five Point Someone will continue as if nothing has happened. If anything, it will be the large Indian retail chains that might feel the pinch, which is why it is they who are driving the anti-FDI movement while claiming of course to be representing the ”the poor store-owner.”
The blog writer also says something interesting:
Of course, the real thing is it is all politics
Dhiman wrote: ncorrect, Jalandhar is a good counter example. hundreds if not thousands of shopkeeper around Walmarts whole sale outlet there have seen their incomes decline by 40%. Unlike the Children of Walton family which owns walmart, children of these shop keepers do not have a trust fund. In many cases, the children themselves are working in their parents shop to make ends meet.
I’m sorry to have to say this but this is another piece of myth making. I suggest you do some reading of how “successful” Walmart has been outside of the US. You could start by reading up its experiences in Germany, UK and China.
Walmart has not been able to successfully replicate its US model outside of the US where due to the peculiarities of these countries the US model does not work. So you talk about studies showing how Walmart has destroyed the livelihoods of people outside of the US
. Compared to its US operations, Walmart has not been successful outside the US and there's no reason to believe they can replicate their US model in India.
In short please back up this argument with source material, and yes please don’t cite reports about the US. India is not the US and will never be;
But survey after survey all across the world where large retail outlets have established themselves show that Walmart impoverishes the communities it operates in, because it replaces large number of shop-owners who have middle-class income with small numbers of low paid workers who have poor income. Thats how Walmart makes money.
Dhiman wrote: Walmart is not going to magically remove years of mis-administration and mis-mangement that local and state government subject their populations to. On the contrary, they are probably bribing (in order to gain entry) and lobbying the very same thugs who mis-manage the government.
Another political statement. Sure Walmart is not going to do that. But mis-admistration is one issue and FDI in retail is another. Today the middlemen, the mandi thekedars whom you champion, bribe the local state governments. How do you propose to stop that?
By the way, when liberalization first started and Pepsico entered India, same tall tales were being told as to how Pepsico would change Indian Agriculture and more than 20 years later, you are still complaining while enjoying a drink that is so very critical to providing 24x7 water supply and electricity to Indian farmers: pepsi cola.
I’ll ignore this personal jibe, because I know where it’s coming from – as a matter of fact due to health reasons I do not drink carbonated drinks.
However, you’re again kite flying. Where and who said the entrance of Pepsico would change Indian agriculture? Please, for a change, back up your outlandish statements.
Taking jobs away may not be a bad thing since that labor can be often redeployed. However, in case of retail in India the numbers are simply too big and social impact to great to gamble with just so that you can get your Nagpur orange in Calcutta.
Another cheap personal jibe which I’ll ignore. Incidentally I don’t live in Calcutta. And yes you'll rather see those Nagpur oranges rot and spoil than see a willing customer in Calcutta pay good money for it. I get it.
However, do you have any ball park figure of how many jobs we’re talking about? Do you have any estimate of how many thousands of jobs will be created or will be lost? If you don’t then you’re just p*ssing into the wind.
yes computerization after a certain point (for example computerized manufacturing) does take away jobs.
This point of yours gives a clue to where you’re coming from.
The last time I heard such rhetorical mumbo jumbo was when the left unions paralyzed the banking system when computers were being introduced.
The refrain was: “All jobs will be lost, the multinationals are duping us poor In’juns and unless we protect you, you’ll be out on the streets with your family” etc, etc.