Today in India, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is allowed up to 51% in Single Brand Retail (you see those show rooms of Zara, Adidas, Mango, etc) and 100% in wholesale (pat of what Wall-mart is doing with Bharti or Carrefour).
After extensive deliberations and withstanding pressure from various executive management representatives of MNCs & foreign governments' commerce ministers - Indian govt's departments - DIPP, RBI, MofCom are not in hurry to change swimming lane. And in last week, Industry Secy said, Govt is *thinking* about opening up to 100% of Single Brand Retail to FDI.
These are indications! companies like Louis Vuitton, Canali, Jimmy Choo who have been waiting to tap this market for obvious reasons. There has been significant lobbying going-on for it, for quite some time. I think it's about time before it gets opened up for Multi Brand Retail Outlets (MBRO) too.
Now this fellow Russell Peter: he is a Canadian comedian of Indian Origin. He makes fun of Indian, Chinese people in conventional and unconventional style. Quite often, I like his observations. So one of his shows in NY, he made fun of Indian people about being Cheap - that Indian & Chinese don't spend on such luxurious items. (now things have changed with the new 'generation' grown up in real estate, IT boom). In the same show he mentioned brand - Louis Vuitton - much like this way 'Indian & Chinese can't even pronounce Louis Vuitton & at another place - he himself thought twice before buying Armani goods (Made in India: whether he should ask his uncle in India, if he can buy these Armanis made in India)
Though some of us might have become rich and have been spending lavishly, significant percentage of Indian folks are still struggling with basic needs of life, Sad but true.
On other note, this cheapness (I would rather call conservativeness) of Indian banking system saved Indian economy from Recession 2008-09. The cheapness of Infosys, TCS, Wipro, etc got them cross the billion dollar mark. & yes, RussellP acknowledge that there is nothing wrong about being cheap. It was an Indian who introduced ZERO to the world :-)