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MCA to release norms allowing direct overseas listing of Indian companies: Report

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) will release norms that will allow Indian companies to list themselves on overseas stock markets without having to list them in India first, Livemint reported. Unnamed officials told the publication that the ministry is close to releasing a draft report on proposed changes to the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), Income Tax Act and Companies Act. The move could help India companies, especially start-ups, raise money in international markets. Currently, companies incorporated in India cannot get listed on foreign stock exchanges if they haven't done so first in India. The report took the example of MakeMyTrip which had to incorporate itself in Mauritius so that it could list itself on US-based Nasdaq in 2010 without first going public in India. An official told Livemint that the ministry is in favour of allowing listing in only key "permissible jurisdictions" that have strong anti-money laundering norms, KYC norms and complaint with the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Earlier in May, as part of the a COVID-19 pandemic economic relief package, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced various reforms to improve "ease of doing" business for corporates in the country. This included the decision to allow pubic companies in India to list securities directly in certain permissible foreign jurisdictions. However, this particular reform had already been incorporated into the Companies Act (Amendment) Bill, 2020 that was introduced in the Lok Sabha on March 17, 2020. It is yet to be enacted. Move first proposed by SEBI in…

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