Amazon boss Jeff Bezos holds closed-door meet with top industry honchos

Amazon boss Jeff Bezos holds closed-door meet with top industry honchos

Amazon boss Jeff Bezos holds closed-door meet with top industry honchos

But his commitment towards creating sustainable growth for the country is here to stay, the CEO said. No less than Prime Minister Modi has been known to be meeting big business tycoons with an open arm while his special rapport with the Indian corporates is now pretty well known.

Retail and Fast Moving Consumer Goods players, including Kishore Biyani of Fture Group (where Amazon has an investment), Hindustan Unilever's Sanjiv Mehta, Nestle India's Suresh Narayanan and Proctor and Gamble India's Madhusudhan Gopalan were also present.

Before his departure, Bezos confirmed Amazon's incremental investment of $1 billion "to digitize micro and small businesses in cities, towns and villages across India, helping them reach more customers than ever before".

This meet interestingly comes after the Economic Times report said that several business leaders in the country were unhappy and offended with Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal's snub at Amazon. Bezos' visit was also met with protests by Indian street traders who rallied outside of an Amazon event in New Delhi, chanting: "Jeff Bezos - Go Back!" In his letter on the Amazon India platform, Bezos said he is adding 10,000 e-rickshaws in Amazon's delivery fleet and that it will eliminate single-use plastic from its fulfilment network by June. They were demonstrating against alleged unfair practices such as predatory pricing or deep discounting employed by Amazon, which they claim hurts small businesses. The minister has made light of the global e-commerce giant's plans to make $1 billion investment in the country and said the American company was not doing any favour to India by this announcement.

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Soon after Goyal spoke, the chief of his party's foreign cell, Vijay Chauthaiwale, tweeted barely-veiled criticism of the Washington Post, which is owned by Bezos.

The swipe at the Post came a day after a cabinet minister gave short shrift to Amazon's investment plans for India. These numbers of openings - the highest compared to other markets in Asia-Pacific - are across Amazon arms like e-commerce, payments and cloud.

Amazon said Saturday that it has partnered with thousands of neighborhood stores, known locally as Kirana stores, across India to use them as product delivery points.

The meeting between CAIT, which represents the interest of over 7 Crore retailers, and Goyal took place a few days after the promise of the American e-commerce retailer Amazon to make new investments of 1 billion United States dollars in India.

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That was followed on Friday by a proposal to create 1 million jobs in India by 2025.

"This clearly is unbecoming, and it will hurt how the world views India as a destination", said a senior executive of a USA -based company operating in India. Another theory that is doing the rounds is that the Modi government wants to protect the interest of small traders and shop owners, since they constitute a major vote bank for the ruling BJP.

In a statement released on Sunday, CAIT said the Secretary of Commerce has assured small businesses that the government is keeping an eye on activities and is now developing a solid e-commerce policy that will ensure a level playing field in the future.

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