Govt to put a tab on heavy discounts offered by Flipkart, Amazon, other shopping portals

govt to put tab on discount on online portals

The Hush Post: To put a tab on the indiscriminate discounts on online shopping portals like Amazon, Flipkart, the government has prepared a draft policy to regulate the e-commerce industry.

According to a draft e-commerce policy, the government is contemplating to regulate “deep discounting” offered by e-commerce platforms like Amazon and Flipkart. The suggestions were discussed at a high-level meeting headed by Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu. The policy also covers food delivery sites, online service aggregators offering services and financial products.

Representatives from private companies like Reliance Jio Infocom, TCS, Infosys, WIPRO, Mindtree, Tech Mahindra, Ola, Makemytrip, and Urban Clap, and government and representative bodies like NASSCOM, CII,  Electronics and Computer Software Export Promotion Council, Internet and Mobile Association of India, participated in the meeting.

The draft e-commerce policy was shared with stakeholders for consultations to propose a legislation to control discounts. The policy also raised the issue of consumer protection, grievance redressal and covers ownership, FDI, storage of data, mergers and acquisitions, and also offers protection to micro, small and medium enterprises.

Bulk purchase of branded goods, especially mobile phones, which leads to price distortions in the market may be banned, according to the initial draft.

The draft recommendations were prepared by several stakeholders, including private sector and government officials from different departments such as commerce, industry, IT and electronics.

No timeline for release of the final policy has been decided yet. The recommendations will soon be placed in public domain for further comments.

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