Banking, Private Equity & Digital Payments

The Banking, Private Equity and Digital Payments Committee seeks to be the premier platform for business leaders and their government counterparts in the U.S.–India financial services corridor to deepen the financial markets of both economies. The Committee develops an annual work plan with an advocacy agenda that leverages both the U.S and Indian government engagements.

The Committee holds roundtables and conferences in both United States and India, leads delegations to meet with policymakers in India to advocate for reforms, and supports the business development objectives of companies seeking to expand their presence in either the U.S. or India.

Data Localization for Payment System Operators
The Reserve Bank of India has recently mandated that all payment system operators must store data in India only and allow unfettered access to supervisors. In mandating an “India only” requirement, the Government of India reform will have widespread impact on the digital payment industry and its future growth in India. USIBC has actively engaged the Government of India on behalf of member companies to address the Government of India’s concerns with cybersecurity and data fraud, and allow continued growth of the digital payments in India.

Creation of a Public Credit Registry for India
The Government of India is in the process of implementing a public credit registry for India that would perform credit data services and provide systemic risk analytics. Many of these credit data services are currently performed by private credit bureaus currently operating in India. The proposed reform will fundamentally change the credit data architecture in India and implicates the ability of these private credit bureaus to continue to operating in India. USIBC has undertaken advocacy to work with the Government of India to identify the best path forward to meet the credit data needs of India and its citizens.

Limitations on FII investment in Indian Companies
Current regulations state that a Foreign Portfolio Investor FPI cannot invest in more than 10% of an Indian company through the foreign portfolio investment route. This requirement discourages foreign portfolio investors from investing in mid- and small-cap companies as in many instances the investment level would be under $10-12 million to comply with the 10% cap. USIBC is working with policymakers to change this policy to encourage greater investment in small and mid-sized companies in India.

Alternative Investment Fund Regulation
USIBC continues to work with the Government of India to develop an appropriate regulatory framework for alternative investment funds in India. Alternative investment funds are a growing category of products in India. Current regulations treat investments made by an AIF that has a foreign-owned sponsor or investment manager domiciled in India as a foreign investment. This impedes the ability of alternative investment funds to effectively compete in the market.

Two-Factor Authentication for Certain Transactions
Exempted two-factor authentication for card-not-present transactions below a certain threshold. This allowed the use of digital payment methods for a broader set of transactions.

Harmonization of Capital Adequacy Requirements for Foreign-owned Asset Managers
Normalized the capital adequacy requirements for foreign-owned asset managers with those for domestic companies. This resulted in member companies changing their decision to exit India.

Grandfathering of Bonus Shares
Obtained clarification that bonus shares would be grandfathered for purposes of the India-Mauritius Tax Treaty and the India Singapore Tax Treaty if the original shares based on which the bonus shares are issued were acquired before 1 April 2017. In such instances, the bonus shares would have the original acquisition date of original shares and holding period.

Reconsideration of Proposal for Mandatory Listing for Insurance Companies Operating in India
USIBC actively engaged Government of India to reconsider a proposal for the mandatory listing of insurance companies operating in India for more than 20 years.

Nileema Pargaonker serves as the Senior Director for the Council’s financial services portfolio. She works with both financial service providers and policy makers to build a dynamic financial services sector in India.

Nileema previously served at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (formerly NASD) (FINRA) where she spent more than 16 years as a regulator in a number of divisions including, Corporate Finance and Enforcement. For ten of those years, she was as a Director in FINRA’s International Department where she led FINRA’s relationships with foreign regulators in Europe and Asia. In this role, she delivered technical assistance to emerging markets on regulatory rule reform, oversight programs, and policy development.

Nileema earned her Bachelor’s degree from University of Chicago, a Master’s in South Asian Studies from University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a JD/MA (International Law) from American University — Washington College of Law.

For more information, please contact Nileema Pargaonker. For media queries, please click here.