On Friday, the 13th of September 2019, one of India’s leading trader body had asked the government of PM Narendra Modi to impose a ban on upcoming festive season sales of Amazon India alongside its rival Walmart-owned Flipkart, adding that the US-based multinational online retailers’ sweeping discounts could breach foreign investment rules for online retailers of the world’s third-largest economy by purchasing power parity (PPP) and the fifth-largest by nominal GDP, a dubious move which would likely to pour further scorns on to India’s tempestuous trade relationship with the United States.
In point of fact, both US-based e-commerce behemoths conventionally target India’s annual festive season sales during Hindu festivals of Dussehra alongside Diwali, which are due to be taken place this year on October when Indians are expected to make big purchases likes of golds, jewelleries alongside cars.
More importantly, latest news of a sweeping ban on two of the largest online retailers of the South Asian country came forth less than two and a half weeks ahead of Walmart Inc.-owned Flipkart India’s six-day-sales which is scheduled to start off by September 29th, while Amazon India is expected to announce this year’s festive season sales by the first week of October, a few days prior to the nation’s largest religious festival, Dussehra.
Meanwhile, adding that the multinational online retailers’ steep discounts would likely to violate India’s foreign investment policy for entirely online-based retailers, the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), the leading advocate to small traders and businesses in India with over 6 crore merchants alongside 40,000 affiliates, said in a letter to the federal trade minister, “By offering deep discounts ranging from 10% to 80% on their e-commerce portals, these companies are clearly influencing the prices and create an uneven level playing field which is in direct contravention of the policy. ”