Maharashtra gives in-principal nod to retail trade policy
Mumbai : To accelerate investments in the underdeveloped regions of the state and retain its leading position in retail trade in the country, Maharashtra has given in-principal approval to a new policy.
The policy, which was approved by the state Cabinet yesterday, says retail traders would be exempt from provisions of stocking limits under the Essential commodities Act.
Traders would be exempted from Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) regulations, so that farmers can sell their produce directly to retailers. They also don’t have to pay any cess to APMC.
Enterprises would also be allowed to stay open every day of the year but with a rider that the employees should be granted compulsory weekly offs on a preferential basis.
Retail enterprises in all goods and commodities would be allowed to function between 5 AM and 11 PM. For logistics and supply purposes, they can operate between 11 PM and 5 AM.
The retail development will be allowed higher ground coverage, up to 70 per cent, subject to setback and fire safety regulations and floor space index (FSI) norms.
The floor-to-floor height will be raised to 5.5 meters and additional parking space will be allowed without FSI implication.
An official from the industries department said up to 50 per cent additional FSI for development of retail and shopping centre would be admissible over the base FSI, subject to payment of full applicable premium according to the prevailing ready-reckoner rates.
Maharashtra industries minister Subhash Desai had introduced the retail trade policy.
“This would enhance viability and quality of development of retail centres,” he said.
Desai, a senior Shiv Sena leader, further said the policy will provide relief to retailers and the sector will subsequently get a boost.
“The policy will be applicable to new retail business and it will be valid for five years,” the minister added.
Desai, in his 14 months tenure in office has reduced the number of licences required to start industries from 75 to 25 and has also brought the Information Technology Enabled Services (ITES) policy.