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India to lift restrictions on Ikea's product range: Report

Published on Jan 17, 2013 12:50 PM
A file picture taken on July 15, 2005 shows workers fixing the logo of Swedish furniture chain Ikea on a new built store in Schmira near Erfurt, eastern Germany.

STOCKHOLM (REUTERS) - Ikea will be permitted to sell non-furniture items and run cafes in India, the country's trade minister was reported as saying, removing a sticking point on the Swedish retailer's plans to enter the country.

"Ikea's proposal based on its global model, which includes cafeterias, will be approved," Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma was quoted as saying by the Financial Express newspaper on Thursday.

India's finance ministry had previously ruled that the world's largest furniture maker would not be allowed to sell items including textile products and office supplies, as it does in other markets, according to recent media reports.

The government has presented Ikea's long-mooted entry into India's retail market as a sign that foreign investors have kept faith with Asia's third-largest economy, at a time when gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the country has declined.