Taking a view of the vast unincorporated sector in the Country consisting of 6.34 crore non-agricultural enterprises, but having neither a policy nor a separate Ministry, the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) has pitched a demand for formulation of a National Trade Policy for Retail Trade and creation of a Ministry of Internal Trade. After agriculture, this sector is the largest one to provide employment and often described as only source of disguised employment.
As per a recent report of a survey conducted by National Sample Survey Organisation (NSSO) between July 2015-June 2016, there are 6.34 crore unincorporated non-agriculture enterprises (excluding construction). About 51% were located in rural areas and 49% were located in urban areas. Out of the total number of enterprises, 31% were engaged in manufacturing, 36.3% were in trading and 32.6% in other service sector. Own Account Enterprises that do not employ any worker has a dominant share of 84.2%.
CAIT National President Mr. B.C.Bhartia & Secretary General Mr. Praveen Khandelwal said, “the analysis of the survey reflects true picture of retail trade in India and establishes the fact that this sector is having immense potential for giving a big push to economy, GDP and employment as well if a structured growth is ensured with support policies. Equally important is the smooth availability of formal financial assistance and technology to upgrade and modernise the existing business format. “ They added, “A Retail Regulatory Authority will be instrumental in devising and monitoring the retail trade, a part of this sector,” adding that beside urban areas more emphasis must be laid to educate and aware the rural areas which has a big potential.
The survey revealed that about 11.13 crore workers were engaged in these enterprises out of which 34.8% were engaged in trading, 32.8% in other services and 32.4% in manufacturing sector. About 55% worked in urban areas and 45% worked in rural areas.
About 98.3% of enterprises were perennial in nature whereas 1.3% were seasonal and 0.4% casual enterprises. During 2015-16, the aggregate Gross Value Addition by this sector was estimated as Rs.11,52,338 crore. In urban areas, it was 70% whereas in rural areas the GVA was 30%.
The survey was conducted in 8488 villages and 8939 urban blocks across the Country. The total number of enterprises in which the Schedule was canvassed was 1,43,179 and 1,46,934 in rural and urban areas respectively.