Several Wall Street investment banking icons are clamouring to get into India amid anticipation that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will soon define the guidelines for overseas institutions to set shop in the country.
Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan and Rabo are among those that have applied for banking licences with the RBI ahead of the guidelines expected to be unveiled soon, government sources who did not wish to be identified, told Hindustan Times.
Earlier this month, the RBI said it would review the roadmap for the entry of foreign banks. During the first phase (2005-09), foreign banks willing to have a presence in India for the first time could either choose to operate through a branch or set up a wholly-owned subsidiary (WOS).
Foreign banks already in India were allowed to convert their existing branches to a WOS, which would enjoy parity with existing branches of foreign banks. However, no foreign bank applied for a WOS in the first phase.
"We have applied for a full banking licence. We are awaiting the guidelines from RBI," the CEO of leading US-based investment bank told HT requesting anonymity.