Assuring small-scale businessmen that the advent of ecommerce would not affect their business, union minister Piyush Goyal on Sunday said the importance of corner stores and small shops would only increase in the coming days as compared to big shopping malls.
Citing examples of America and Europe, the union minister of state for power, coal and new and renewable energy said the relevance of corner stores was increasing and big malls were becoming ''unviable''. Therefore, he said, small-scale businessmen should not have any concern.
''The relevance of small shops would not lessen. In America and Europe, the number of corner stores is increasing whereas the big malls are being shut down. In the era of e-commerce, the relevance and importance of small shops would only increase,'' Goyal said at the 3rd Yuvak-Yuvti Parichay Sammelan of Shri Agrawal Parmarth Seva Samiti in Jaipur.
''Delegations come to us to express concern over the impact of supermarkets and ecommerce on small businesses but I do not see any concern because I understand that supermarkets are now becoming unviable and e-commerce will only benefit small businesses. Corner stores and shops will continue to be relevant,'' he said.
Compared to supermarkets, goods purchased from small shops are cheaper. The customer not only has to pay more for the goods but also has to spend on parking, food etc at the malls, the minister pointed out.
On another note, Goyal said politics is a ''means to serve the society''. He said there were certain customs in society which needed to be ''eliminated''.
''The time has come to link the community with active politics and serve the society as a whole. Members of the community have the capability to serve it with honesty and more and more people should come forward to do that through politics,'' he said.
The minister lamented the fact that even after 70 years of Independence, nearly 20-22 crore people in the country were without electricity.
''Crores of students are deprived of good education. They are forced to drop out and work at farms. The reason behind this is that good people did not join politics. I want to provide electricity to every household. This too is a community service in a way,'' said Goyal.
He said in the coming years, the eastern states would get Rs3,25,000 crore from the auction of coal blocks and the money will be spent on public service and welfare of people.