Country's two largest private sector lenders--ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank--on Monday played down concerns of being treated as foreign banks on account of majority foreign shareholding in them, saying they continue to remain 'Indian'.
The two--along with five other private sector banks --are likely to get impacted by the new FDI policy as foreign shareholding in these entities in different forms like ADRs and GDRs exceeds 50 per cent. This could make them ineligible for being treated as domestic entities.
"Our management continues to be Indian. We continue to remain as a bank of Indian origin. Beyond that the classification of shareholding does not really impact our day-to-day performance," ICICI Bank's Managing Director and CEO, Chanda Kochhar, told reporters in Mumbai.
The Government’s decision is likely to impact the future investment plans of these banks in subsidiaries or in sectors where there is a cap on foreign investment but Kochhar said this was not a major concern with the bank.
"We, in any case, do not invest in the equity shares of other companies in a big way. So in that sense, it does not really change life for us," Kochhar said.
HDFC Bank's Managing Director, Aditya Puri, also echoed a similar view, saying that the FDI policy did not create any issue for the bank. The bank continues to be an Indian bank with voting rights resting with Indians.