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India, UK explore possibility of bonds, shares listing at GIFT City, LSE

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday said India and the UK are exploring the possibility of listing debt instruments and shares at IFSC-GIFT City and the London Stock Exchange (LSE).

The UK has expressed its willingness to further expand its footprint in the IFSC-Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City) and foster robust fintech partnership, Sitharaman said after the conclusion of the 12th India-UK Economic and Financial Dialogue.

“We have mentioned earlier once that we are looking at listing, commencing with the IFSC, so once that is done, we may look at moving further, and that’s where you heard the Chancellor saying soon after that, it is for India to consider listing in London. So, at this stage, we have said that we are looking at listing in IFSC first,” she said.

Debt, including Masala and green bonds, can be listed on these platforms to raise foreign capital.

Post-meeting, UK Chancellor of Exchequer Jeremy Hunt appreciated the efforts being made for the direct listing of Indian companies on the London Stock Exchange (LSE).

“We are particularly pleased to have made a big step forward with the first confirmation by India that it will explore the LSE as an international destination for the direct listing of Indian companies.

“Alongside that, there is a new Pensions and Insurance Partnership, the establishment of knowledge and expertise-sharing and the new UK Infrastructure Financing Bridge and a deepened partnership on the developmental GIFT City. So, we can really support each other’s plans to strengthen the relationship and the way the next step of this is a comprehensive FTA and Bilateral Investment Treaty,” Hunt said.

The LSE is the largest global centre for Masala Bonds, having raised over 50% of the total aggregate amount originated globally. Over the last 5 years, Indian firms have raised 13.41 billion pounds in masala, dollar and green bonds listed on the LSE.

UK banks were among the first international banks to set up shops in GIFT City.

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