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Govt nod to Cyprus cos for cash & carry trade

BS corporate bureau in New Delhi | December 09, 2004 13:00 IST

A consortium of two Cyprus-based companies called Garront Ltd and Gardening Holding has become the second entity after German wholesaler Metro AG to receive the government's nod to start cash & carry trading in India.

Finance minister P Chidambaram cleared the proposal to set up a wholly owned subsidiary with 100 per cent equity participation to carry out wholesale trading in consumer goods and household products.

Interestingly, an Internet search for the two companies yielded no results, and none of the leading retailers or retail analysts have heard of the two before.

The government's existing policy bars foreign participation in organised retail but allows 100 per cent foreign direct investment to undertake wholesale, business-to-business trading.

According to sources, the proposal was last considered in a meeting held on September 23 this year but a decision was deferred for a couple of weeks as there were doubts that the proposal might have an element of direct consumer retailing.

The proposal was finally cleared after receiving a reassurance from the company's representatives that no form of retail trading would be carried out.

In its proposal, Garront and Gardening said that it would sell medical and therapy products such as blood pressure monitors and ultrasonic nebulisers, and household appliances.

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