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Tatas await final retail nod

Noel Tata (centre) with Congo senior industry minister Isidore Mvouba (right) and Maria Kiwanuka, minister of finance, planning and economic development of Uganda, at a CII event in New Delhi on Monday. (PTI)

New Delhi, March 10: The Tata group today said it would decide on the future plan of its joint venture with UK-based retailer Tesco only after getting the final approvals from the government.

The Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) had in December last year allowed Tata Group firm Trent Hypermarket and Tesco to open multi-brand retail stores. However, final approvals are still pending owing to inter-ministerial issues over the wording of the approval order.

“We are awaiting the approvals. When we get it we will make our plans (to open multi-brand retail stores). We are still waiting for the acceptance (of 50:50 joint venture of Trent-Tesco),” Trent vice-chairman Noel Tata said on the sidelines of a CII event here today.

Analysts said it was normal for any group to wait for the regulatory approvals before disclosing the details of the plan to set up chains.

In December, the FIPB had cleared Tesco’s $110-million proposal (about Rs 680 crore).

However, Saurabh Chandra, secretary in the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP), on February 28 had written to the finance ministry on the wording of the approval and the changes made to the original proposal.

Sources said the DIPP in a proposal to the FIPB had set a condition for approval. According to it, Tesco Overseas Investment will always remain a 100 per cent subsidiary of the UK-based retailer.

 
 
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