Sitharaman said she is also considering meetings with some state governments on the matter
Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday held consultations on foreign direct investment policy in e-commerce with stakeholders, including e-retailers Flipkart and Snapdeal and industry associations, especially whether FDI should be allowed in the business-to-consumer (B2C) category.
"It was the first meeting. We are not taking any position this way or that way from the ministry. We have heard everybody on whether they need or do not need FDI, and whether it will affect the level playing field," Sitharaman told reporters here.
"In fact, this is not going to be sufficient. I need more meetings with everyone, individual operators and associations," she added.
Sithraman said she is also considering meetings with some state governments on the matter.
"I may have meetings with state governments also to understand how they have taken a position because it is important for me to know in each of these cases what is the issue," she said.
India currently allows 100 percent FDI in business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce, but not in B2C companies selling directly to consumers.
Sitharaman said stakeholders raised issues related to taxation, definition and inclusion of e-commerce within the framework of the domestic trade policy.
Representatives from industry organisations CII, FICCI, Nasscom, the Confederation of All India Traders, and companies such as eBay, Snapdeal, Decathlon, H&M, and Ikea attended the meeting.
"CII is of the view that e-commerce in India is at relatively nascent stage and the market is yet to attain full maturity level," the industry chamber said in a statement here after the meeting.
"While CII is favourably inclined towards 100 percent FDI in B2C route, the sector should be given some time to come to a level where it can compete globally," it added.