RBI notifies 49 pct FDI under automatic route in insurance

RBI notifies 49 pct FDI under automatic route in insurance

01/04/2016 00:44

Reserve Bank has notified 49 per cent foreign direct investment (FDI) under automatic route in insurance sector, said the PTI report.

“The extant FDI policy for insurance sector has since been reviewed by the Government of India and accordingly it has been decided to enhance the limit of foreign investment in insurance sector from 26 to 49 percent under the automatic route subject to certain terms and conditions which have been notified on March 30,” RBI said in a notification.

“No Indian Insurance company shall allow the aggregate holdings by way of total foreign investment in its equity shares by foreign investors, including portfolio investors, to exceed forty-nine percent of the paid up equity capital of such Indian Insurance company,” it said.

“The foreign investment up to 49 percent of the total paid-up equity of the Indian Insurance Company shall be allowed on the automatic route subject to approval or verification by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India,” it said.

The foreign equity investment cap of 49 per cent will apply on the same terms as above to Insurance Brokers, Third Party Administrators, Surveyors and Loss Assessors and Other Insurance Intermediaries appointed under the provisions of the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority Act,1999.

Earlier, only up to 26 per cent FDI was permitted through the automatic approval route. For FDI up to 49 per cent, the approval of the Foreign Investment Promotion Board was required.

There are 52 insurance companies operating in India, of which 24 are life insurance business and 28 in general insurance.

Total PE investments in 2015 at $19.5 bn

Total PE investments in 2015 at $19.5 bn

15/03/2016 14:33

Private equity investments during the October-December period totalled USD 3.9 billion, taking the deal value for the year 2015 to USD 19.5 billion – the “best ever” for India, said a PwC report.

According to the PwC MoneyTree India report, a quarterly study of PE investment activity based on data provided by Venture Intelligence, the fourth quarter of 2015 saw investments worth USD 3.9 billion, a 12 per cent drop as compared to the same period of 2014.

However, despite the drop, the stellar performance throughout the year helped 2015 become the best year ever, with a total of USD 19.5 billion worth of PE inflows across 159 deals, reported PTI.

“India’s macros are looking good, with the current account and fiscal deficit at acceptable levels, a relatively stable rupee, inflation at below 5 per cent and, most importantly, a declining interest rate regime. This should encourage private investment as demand picks up,” PwC India leader, Private Equity Sanjeev Krishan said.

Sectorwise, the information technology and IT-enabled services (IT & ITeS) continued to be the biggest sector, as this space attracted USD 1.3 billion in 93 deals, followed by the banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI) sector that attracted USD 910 million in 10 deals.

“In 2015, sectors such as banking, insurance and telecom saw the stabilisation of their business and opened up their technology spend over the year, thereby driving the growth of the Indian IT & ITeS industry,” PwC India leader – Technology, Sandeep Ladda said.

“Media & entertainment sector was a surprise, attracting investments worth USD 414 million,” the report said.

Regionally, Mumbai attracted USD 1.9 billion, while Bengaluru was a distant second with investments worth USD 733 million.

Going forward, Krishan said, “financial services, technology and healthcare continue to see sustained activity in 2016, while e-commerce fundraising may get challenging this year at least in the near term”.

He added that the Indian Government’s focus on making it easier for foreign investors to do business in India will help from a perception standpoint and needs to be backed by real reform.