News: Indian agency seeks information, documents from Amazon amid probe: source.
NEW DELHI (Reuters) – The Indian enforcement agency recently asked Amazon.com Inc for information related to Its activities in the country while the agency continues to investigate the US e-commerce giant, a source for a senior agency told Reuters on Friday.
Last month, the source for the Federal Bureau of Financial Crime said the directorate would review the findings in a recent Reuters special report, which found the company has given and given preferential treatment to a small group of sellers on its Indian platform for years has used to circumvent the country’s foreign investment rules.
The agency has been investigating Amazon for possible violations of the foreign investment rules for several years. Such probes typically last years in India and in most cases details are not made public.
The Reuters special report was based on internal Amazon documents from 2012 to 2019. It gave an insight into the cat-and-mouse game that Amazon was playing with the Indian government and adjusted its corporate structures every time the The government imposed new protections on small traders. To read the special report, click reut.rs/2OCOT2W
On Friday, the high-ranking source told the enforcement agency Reuters that “we have apparently obtained information from Amazon”.
When asked whether the agency had requested documents from the company, the source said: “Information means information and documents.”
The source declined to comment further on the type of documents sought or whether a company executive was asked to interview.
An Amazon spokeswoman in India declined to comment.
In the Reuters report released last month, Amazon said it was confident of complying with Indian law. It added that it “does not give preferential treatment to any seller in its market” and that it “treats all sellers in a fair, transparent and non-discriminatory manner”.
Indian retailers, an integral part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s support base, have long claimed that e-commerce giants like Amazon and Walmarts Flipkart are breaking federal regulations and that their business practices are harming small retailers. The companies deny the allegations.
The documents checked by Reuters showed that Amazon helped a small number of sellers thrive on its Indian platform by receiving discounted fees and closing special offers with major technology makers like Apple Inc.
The company also exerted significant control over the inventory of some of the largest sellers on Amazon.in, as the documents showed, despite the fact that all sellers are publicly known to operate independently on their platform.
Reporting from Aditya Kalra in New Delhi; Adaptation by David Evans
Original Source © Reuters