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U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is due in New Delhi next week where he is expected to raise concerns about the e-commerce policy and data localization, officials said. New Indian rules announced in December for the e-commerce sector banned companies such as Amazon and Flipkart from striking exclusive deals with sellers, restricted their ability to offer discounts and barred them from selling products via vendors in which they have an equity interest. The move disrupted product listings on Amazon’s India website and forced it to change its business structures. Amazon and Walmart, as well as the U.S. government, had lobbied against the move, Reuters reported earlier.

The new rules, coming ahead of a general election, were seen as a bid by Modi to placate small traders, who had for years complained about business practices of large e-commerce players, They form a key voter base for Modi who is facing a tightening election in the next few months, The idea of the policy was to foster healthy competition and promote India’s e-commerce, an kings crown cufflinks Indian government official involved in trade issues said, defending the curbs on the big firms, But companies disagree and decry such sudden policy changes..

“These types of actions can really put a negative view on India as an investment destination,” one of the sources said. India last year also announced proposals to force foreign companies to store more of their user data locally, in a bid to better conduct legal investigations. U.S. lobby groups had voiced concerns about those proposals too, saying they made it difficult for companies to do business in the country. If the United States eliminates duty-free access for about 2,000 Indian product lines, it will mostly hurt small businesses such as jewelry, said one of the sources. The number of goods qualifying for preferential treatment could be reduced, or the whole program could be withdrawn.

There was no response to a request for comment from the USTR or the U.S, Embassy, India’s trade ministry also did not answer questions emailed to them about trade differences with the United States, But an kings crown cufflinks Indian government official briefed on the trade discussions said the trade package under which the two sides were negotiating better access to each other’s farm and dairy markets was unlikely until the elections in India this spring, Talks on U.S, demands to relax India’s decision to cap prices of medical devices made in the United States had also got stuck, the official said..

PARIS (Reuters) - Activist investor Elliott kept up the pressure on French spirits group Pernod Ricard, welcoming this week’s first-half results but calling for boardroom changes and better margins. Elliott, which has built a stake of just over 2.5 percent in Pernod Ricard, has called on the family-backed group to raise profit margins to bring them more into line with British rival Diageo. Elliott has suggested 500 million euros (437 million pounds) in cost cuts and options such as merging with another spirits company.

The hedge fund, which has become increasingly active in Europe in recent years, issued a statement on Friday after Pernod’s results this week when the group raised its profit growth outlook for 2018-2019 and unveiled new margin goals in a three-year strategy plan, kings crown cufflinks “Pernod’s half-year earnings announcement confirmed the strong growth potential and solid financial performance of the company, It also reflected a first small step in starting to address the company’s shortcomings in operational efficiency,” Elliott said..

Last month, Pernod Ricard took a step towards improving its governance, naming Patricia Barbizet to the newly created role of lead independent director. Nevertheless, Elliott on Friday made clear it wanted more. “Necessary enhancements to the company’s board and corporate governance have yet to be addressed,” Elliott said. Chief Executive Alexandre Ricard, 46-year-old grandson of the firm’s founder, made sales growth his top priority when he took over in 2015 and has defended his long-term value strategy.

Elliott has blamed Pernod’s underperformance in part on what it views as poor governance, having highlighted that Pernod’s kings crown cufflinks 15-member board needs more diversity and independence, since many directors are linked to the Ricard family, One indicator of the family’s influence, which was controversial, was double-voting rights at Pernod Ricard, a source familiar with the situation said, Most French companies have a two-year period before an investor can get these rights while at Pernod Ricard it is 10 years, restricting the influence of outsiders..

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