India and Walmart.

The current log jam in Indian parliament over foreign direct investment is worrying. It is not a new phenomena but it is more common than actual gentlemen’s discussion. Our eminent parliamentarians are used to fighting rather than discussing the issue. I wonder how long this is going to go. We as a citizen lose important discussion time and end up with crippled bills and laws.

Should the government insist on FDI for foreign firms for up to 51%? It is a tricky economic dilemma. India is a country of 1.2 billion people. The Slate reports that only 8% of urban populations do their shopping in an organized shopping center. That means 92% of people still go to the mom and pop stores. The small store owners deal with a long chain of middlemen who bargain for best prices and then people bargain and barter for the goods.

The mom and pop stores make every owner their own boss. The firms like Walmart and Tesco have a very bad record of employee care. Long hours, short pay and tough customer service. I wonder how sustainable is it. A big chain provides usually provides same line of products at cheaper price throughout the country. For a big country like India, supermarkets are unavoidable.