Millennium Post

RBI lets foreign banks’ 100 per cent arms acquire local ones

It also allowed foreign bank subsidiaries to list on local stock exchanges. However, foreign bank subsidiaries will not be allowed to hold more than 74 per cent, the sectoral cap for overall foreign investment, in the private banks they may acquire.  ‘As a locally incorporated bank, the WOSs will be given near national treatment which will enable them to open branches anywhere in the country at par with Indian banks (except in certain sensitive areas where RBI’s prior nod would be required),’ the RBI said.

Standard Chartered, the largest foreign bank by branch presence in India, has its depository shares trading on the domestic bourses, although it hasn’t adopted a subsidiary route here. Only MNC banks Standard Chartered, HSBC and Citi have more than 30 branches in the country. Although the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has 31 branches, it is winding down local retail operations. As per the guidelines, the initial minimum paid-up voting equity capital or net worth for a WOS would be
Rs 500 crore.
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