Two IFSCs Not Fea­si­ble: Pandey

GROUND­WORK NEEDED

The Economic Times - - Finance & Commodities -

Mum­bai: Gu­jarat In­ter­na­tional Fi­nance Tec-City (GIFT) MD Ajay Pandey has ques­tioned the need for an­other in­ter­na­tional fi­nance­cen­treinMum­ba­iata­time when­theoneintheneigh­bour­ing state is still find­ing its feet.

Twoin­t­er­na­tion­al­fi­nan­cialser­vices cen­tres (IFSCs) will not be fea­si­ble in a coun­try where there is no full cap­i­tal ac­count con­vert­ibil­ity of the cur­rency as it would de­feat the pur­pose of a spe­cial eco­nomic­zone,AjayPandey­said. Pandey was re­spond­ing to plans by the Ma­ha­rash­tra gov­ern­ment­tose­tu­pan­in­ter­na­tional fi­nan­cial ser­vices cen­tre in Mum­bai which, if it hap­pens, will ri­val the one-and-a-half year old 886-acre GIFT City.

“Glob­ally,thereison­ly­onecoun­try where there are two in­ter­na­tional fi­nance cen­tres, that is Chi­naan­de­ven­there,ithas­taken morethaneightyears­forasec­ond cen­tre to come up. I don’t know howasec­ondIFSC­canex­istinthe same coun­try,” Pandey said. The Ma­ha­rash­tra gov­ern­ment con­sti­tute­datask­force­un­derthe then union min­is­ter of state for f i nance Jayant S i nha in De­cem­ber 2015 to set up an IFSC in Mum­bai. The plan is to de­velop a des­ig­nated area in Ban­dra Kurla Com­plex as an IFSC.

How­ever, Pandey said start­ing an­other IFSC is not easy. “It is not like start­ing a re­tail store sell­ing sham­poos. It is a reg­u­lated enti- ty,” he said. GIFT City cur­rently deals with RBI, Se­cu­ri­ties and Ex­change Board of In­dia (Sebi) and In­surance Reg­u­la­tory and Devel­op­ment Au­thor­ity (Irda) as banks, bro­ker­ages and in­surance com­pa­nies have all started or are start­ing op­er­a­tions there.

An IFSC en­joys cer­tain tax ben­e­fits and aims to cre­ate jobs in the fi­nan­cial as well as tech­nol­ogy sec­tors. GIFT City aims to cre­ate one mil­lion jobs by 2025 by which time 62 mil­lion square feet of space will be op­er­a­tional.

“We aim to cre­ate half a mil­lion di­rect jobs and an­other half a mil­lion in­di­rect jobs. We have madein­vest­mentsof ₹ 2,000 crore with to­tal com­mit­ted in­vest­ment of ₹ 10,000 crore over the next few years,” Pandey said.

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