Attracting Sovereign Wealth Funds

Although there had been a great amount of discussion a couple of years ago regarding soverign wealth funds (SWFs), both in terms of their investments in the Indian markets and to to whether India should create one for itself, that seemed to have died down. This was largely because SWFs were expressly recognized in 2008 as foreign institutional investors (FIIs) under the SEBI FII Regulations, and many SWFs indeed registered themselves as FIIs.

Now there is a proposal (reported here and here) to provide some relaxations to SWFs both under the FII Regulations as well as the Takeover Regulations. While this is expected to increase the flow of funds from SWFs into India, there are also questions raised as to the need for separate treatment of SWFs as a category of foreign investors, as this debate suggests.

About the author

Umakanth Varottil

Umakanth Varottil is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Law, National University of Singapore. He specializes in corporate law and governance, mergers and acquisitions and cross-border investments. Prior to his foray into academia, Umakanth was a partner at a pre-eminent law firm in India.

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