Ahmedabad: Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to increase cooperation and collaboration between the two financial centres, a GIFT City statement said.
The agreement was signed by Arif Amiri, chief executive officer of DIFC Authority and Ajay Pandey, director and group CEO of GIFT SEZ.
The agreement calls for sharing of best practices, exchange of information on banking, financial service and securities, legislation and regulation and cooperation in training, among others.
“India represents the UAE’s third largest trading partner as well as one of the world’s fastest growing economies, and natural synergies between the two centres exist which will certainly benefit our respective clients,” Amiri was quoted as saying in the media statement.
DIFC has provided a springboard from which Indian firms can access wealthy investors, all underpinned by English common law and unrivalled connectivity to the South to South corridor, he added.
DIFC has seen an increase in the number of Indian firms operating from it - from hosting one Indian institution in 2007 to more than 25 at present. Indian institutions make up the third largest community of financial firms at the Centre after the US and the UK.
The MoU with DIFC follows an agreement between Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) and GIFT City for closer collaboration in financial market activities.
GIFT City Co, which is implementing the GIFT City project in Gandhinagar, is an equal joint venture between Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services Ltd and state government-owned Gujarat Urban Development Co. Ltd. Of the 880 acres allotted to GIFT City, about 250 acres is earmarked for the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC).
In 2015, the government announced guidelines for IFSCs that included framework set by the stock market, banking and insurance regulators. Apart from the exemptions that have been granted in the Companies Act, the government had also announced various tax concessions—transaction taxes and stamp duty won’t be levied in IFSCs and firms operating in them will enjoy a tax holiday for 10 years.