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Cabinet Relaxes FDI Norms In Single-brand Retail, Allows 26% Foreign Investment In Digital Media

The government on Wednesday relaxed FDI rule for foreign single-brand retailers and also permitted foreign investment in contract manufacturing and coal mining.

Briefing reporters on the decisions taken by the Union Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said 100 per cent foreign direct investment (FDI) under automatic route in coal mining and associated infrastructure has been approved.

To boost domestic manufacturing, 100 per cent FDI in contract manufacturing under automatic route has been allowed, he said, adding that 26 per cent FDI has been allowed in digital media.

On FDI in single-brand retailing, the Cabinet has expanded the definition of mandatory 30 per cent domestic sourcing norm. It also allowed single-brand retailers to start online sales, waiving the previous condition of setting up a mandatory brick-and-mortar store, he said.

Meanwhile, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved setting up of 75 government medical colleges to be attached with existing district or referral hospitals by 2021-22.

The establishment of new medical colleges, under phase III of the ongoing Centrally sponsored scheme, will add at least 15,700 MBBS seats in the country.

The new medical colleges would be set up in under-served areas having no medical colleges, with district hospitals having at least 200 beds, a government statement said.

The establishment of new medical colleges, to be attached with existing district and referral hospitals, would lead to an increase in the availability of qualified health professionals, improve tertiary care in the government sector, utilise the existing infrastructure of district hospitals and promote affordable medical education in the country, it said.

“The scheme on the establishment of new medical colleges would lead to the addition of at least 15,700 MBBS seats in the country,” the government said.

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