Hundred percent foreign direct investment would eradicate Indian brands, says Mamata Banerjee

New Delhi, June 24: “I am not against people getting jobs, but it (FDI) will kill our Indian brands,” Mamata told the West Bengal Assembly on Thursday.  Taking a strong stand against the recent relaxation of FDI(foreign direct investment) norms by the central government, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has claimed that 100 FDI in various sectors will actually “kill Indian brands”. Mamata Banerjee further said that her government will continue to oppose FDI in various sectors as the interests of Indian brands can’t be overlooked.

“TMC MPs will discuss the matter in Parliament. But 100% FDI be it in pharmaceutical, agricultural or manufacturing sectors will have an adverse impact on Indian brands. We have to look after the Indian brands. We need to do the branding of our own products,” she told the state assembly.

Trinamool Congress has been consistently opposing FDI in many areas and often outlined reasons for it at different fora. It was on the issue of allowing FDI that TMC had walked out of UPA-II government in 2012.

 Banerjee said there were certain issues on which the Center should take a call after talking to all political parties.

Citing the instance of the pharma sector, she said “allowing FDI in it will lead to increase in prices of medicines including life saving ones.”

“It will increase medicine prices and no one will be able to buy them. If you allow 100% FDI, the merit and talent of our country will not come up,” she said.

The BJP-led NDA government has relaxed FDI norms in a host of sectors including civil aviation, single-brand retail, defence and pharma by permitting more investments under automatic route.

The other sectors in which FDI norms have been relaxed include e-commerce in food products, broadcasting carriage services, private security agencies and animal husbandry.