The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved a scheme allowing
foreigners to settle in the country if they bring significant
investment. Foreign investors bringing in at least Rs 10 crore
capital will be eligible for Permanent Residency Status (PRS),
easier visa regime and employment for family members among other
benefits under a new policy.
The Permanent Residency Status, which is granted first for 10
years, with multiple entries, can be extended for another 10 years.
A statement from cabinet declared "The scheme will be
applicable only to foreign investors fulfilling the prescribed
eligibility conditions, his/her spouse and dependents". Also,
PRS holders will be allowed to purchase one residential property
for dwelling purposes.
The scheme is expected to encourage foreign investment in India
and facilitate the Make in India programme. Under the scheme,
suitable provisions will be incorporated in the Visa Manual to
provide for the grant of permanent residency status to foreign
investors. "In order to avail this scheme, the foreign
investor will have to invest a minimum of Rs 10 crore to be brought
within 18 months or Rs 25 crore to be brought within 36 months.
Further, the foreign investment should result in generating
employment to at least 20 resident Indians every financial
year," the statement said. Also, it will not apply to
nationals of Pakistan.
According to existing rules, all foreigners (including those of
Indian origin) visiting on a long term (more than 180 days) student
visa, medical visa, research visa or employment visa are required
to book with the Foreigners Registration Office concerned, having
jurisdiction over the place the person intends to stay, within 14
days of arrival. Pakistani nationals have to register within 24
hours of arrival. Various places — Singapore, Hong Kong,
America, Canada, others — offer residency status for foreign
entrepreneurs in return for investment.
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The issuance of rupee denominated bonds overseas (Masala Bonds) was permitted by RBI's circular dated 29 September 2015 read with the relevant provisions of the Master Direction dated 1 January 2016 on External Commercial Borrowings, Trade Credit, Borrowing and Lending in Foreign Currency by Authorised Dealers and Persons other than Authorised Dealers.
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