Mumbai: Kumar Mangalam Birla-controlled Idea Cellular Ltd. on Monday said that it has received approval on its application to increase foreign direct investment (FDI) limit in the company to 100%, from the current 67.5%, from the Department of Telecom (DoT).

“The approval is for total foreign investment upto 100% in Idea Cellular Ltd., and total indirect FDI in its relevant subsidiaries – Aditya Birla Telecom Ltd. and Idea Cellular Infrastructure Services Ltd," Idea Cellular said in a statement.

“The FDI approval is a major milestone in the merger process of Vodafone India with Idea Cellular, and follows other statutory approvals already received from the SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India), NSE (National Stock Exchange), BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange), CCI (Competition Commission of India) and NCLT (National Company Law Tribunal)-Mumbai and NCLT-Ahmedabad," it added.

Idea Cellular Ltd, which is in the final stages of completing its proposed merger with Vodafone India Ltd, will create the world’s second largest and India’s largest telecom firm in terms of subscribers, overtaking Bharti Airtel Ltd.

The merger of Vodafone India with Idea Cellular is in the final leg of regulatory approvals and is expected to complete in first half of 2018 (January-June 2018), subject to the final approval from the DoT (Department of Telecommunications), Idea Cellular said in the statement.