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GIFT-IFSC Transactions Cross $2 Billion; Hub To Create 1 Million Jobs By 2025

International exchange by BSE is already in operation and is generating an average turnover of $2 million

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Business transactions at Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT), country's first International Financial Services Centre, has crossed USD 2 billion mark and is likely to grow manifold in the near term.

The GIFT IFSC, which has currently generated 5,000 jobs, is expected to generate one million more employment opportunities by 2025. It is likely to create at least 10,000 jobs by the end of this year.

"GIFT IFSC has already crossed cumulative business transactions worth USD 2 billion," GIFT City managing director and CEO Ajay Pandey told reporters in Mumbai.

Noting that the business transactions are going up by the day, Pandey said it will further pick up significantly once regulator Sebi gives the go-ahead to launch more products like currency derivatives in the international exchanges.

International exchange by BSE is already in operation and is generating an average turnover of USD 2 million. Meanwhile, NSE is awaiting final approval from Sebi to begin its international bourse at IFSC.

Pandey also said, "By 2025, we are expected to create one million job, which includes half a million direct jobs and half a million indirect jobs."

"It is 5,000 right now and is likely to go upto 10,000 by end of this year," he added.

Asked about the proposed IFSC in Mumbai, Pandey said that as per the "global best practices, the country where a local currency, which in our case is the rupee, is not fully convertible in capital account, there is precedence of having only one IFSC".

"There is only one other place in the world, where second IFSC has come and where currency is not fully convertible, is China and that also came after a gap of 8-9 years of its first IFSC," Pandey noted.

"IFSC is not a retail store that you open 15 branches, it is function of local currencies and local regulations...I don't know how can two IFSCs exist," he further said.

On the possibility of formation of a separate regulatory body to monitor for IFSC, Pandey said that the government is discussing the subject, but no formal process has been initiated yet.

"Today, GIFT IFSC is being regulated by three regulators -- Sebi, RBI and IRDA, and they are regulating in a carved out fashion. A separate regulator will streamline the process, but no formal process has begun," Pandey said.

"There is what is called an IFSC task force chaired by Arjun Ram Meghwal (Union Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs) and this subject has been discussed, but this a consultative process," he added.