Smaller e-commerce players like Snapdeal and Shopclues have written to the government opposing any move to extend the February-1 deadline for online marketplaces to comply with FDI rules, and urged that pressure for such relaxations need to be "resisted strongly". The position taken by these players is in contrast to that of giants like Amazon and Walmart-backed Flipkart who have sought an extension, stating that they need more time to understand the details of the framework.
In December, the government had announced new regulations that would bar online marketplaces with foreign investments from selling products of the companies where they hold stakes, and ban exclusive marketing arrangements. These changes are expected to hit Amazon and Flipkart, the hardest. Snapdeal co-founder and CEO Kunal Bahl, in his letter dated January 25 to Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu, said the "prompt implementation of Press Note 2/2018, without delay or dilution, is the first and crucial step to curb the continuing violations of the FDI policy on e-commerce". He argued that "the timelines allowed are adequate for compliance" and that Snapdeal has already updated its technical processes, engaged statutory auditors - EY as well as apprised its team and sellers about the upcoming changes in norms.