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Opinion
Andy Mukherjee

India Readies an Amazon Slayer — State-Backed E-Commerce

New Delhi is closing another door that would allow U.S. tech giants a chance to do business in the last billion-people consumer market still open to them.

A new existential threat lurks around the corner.

A new existential threat lurks around the corner.

Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg

The investing world is enthralled by a determined Beijing as it cuts China’s private sector down to size by relentless regulatory action. That’s good news for New Delhi: Its more subtle maneuvers in the same direction are going largely unnoticed. 

Amazon.com Inc. and Walmart Inc.’s Flipkart, however, would surely have felt the rising temperatures. Even as they weigh draft e-commerce rules that seek to restrict online marketplaces — not just theirs, but also the planned super-app by India’s Tata Group — a new existential threat lurks around the corner: a state-sponsored open network for digital commerce.