RBI relaxes external commercial borrowing norms

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New Delhi, Jan 16 (IANS) The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Wednesday announced a new framework for external commercial borrowings (ECBs) and rupee-denominated bonds in a bid to improve ease of doing business.

As per the new framework, all eligible borrowers can now raise external commercial borrowings up to $750 million or equivalent per financial year under the automatic route, replacing the existing sector-wise limits.

It also set the minimum average maturity period at three years for all external commercial borrowings irrespective of the amount.

Previously, the RBI had only allowed companies to borrow up to $50 million for three years. For funds beyond $50 million, companies had to borrow for at least five years.

“Tracks I and II under the existing framework are merged as ‘Foreign Currency-denominated ECB’ and Track III and Rupee-denominated Bonds framework are combined as ‘Rupee Denominated ECB’ to replace the current four-tiered structure,” the RBI said in a statement.

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It also expanded the list of eligible borrowers allowing all entities eligible to receive foreign direct investment to borrow under the ECB framework.

–IANS

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