IKEA applies for permit to open 25 stores in IndiaIKEA wants to invest EUR1.5 billion (USD1.98 billion) to open 25 stores in India. IKEA's plans were announced by the Indian government after a meeting in Russia between the company's CEO, Mikael Ohlsson, and India's Trade Minister, Anand Sharma. IKEA said its investment will be made over a 15-20 year period. India's Commerce Ministry said IKEA will initially invest EUR600 million (USD793 million) for 10 stores and a further sum of up to EUR900 million (USD1.19 billion) for the further 15 outlets.
The Indian government removed foreign investment caps in single-brand retail in January, but imposed a condition that companies source 30% from local small and mid-sized enterprises, a stipulation to which IKEA had objected. "IKEA had certain reservations about sourcing norms which were discussed with the DIPP (Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion) officials; suitable answers of which were provided leading to the decision to invest," the Indian government said in a statement. In its statement, IKEA said it believes it can "live up to the guidelines and keep within the spirit of the policy".
The company sourced USD450 million worth of goods from the country in 2011, and aims to increase this to USD1 billion in the coming years. IKEA said it sources goods such as textiles and carpets from 70 suppliers and 1,400 sub-suppliers in the country.
The Economic Times reports that the company has filed an application with the government through its adviser Titus and Co Advocates and that the proposal will require approval from India’s Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs.
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