Home >Politics >Policy >Task force on developing Mumbai IFSC to look at collaborations with GIFT
The task force, headed by minister of state for finance Jayant Sinha, held its first meeting in January. Photo: Mohd Zakir/HT
The task force, headed by minister of state for finance Jayant Sinha, held its first meeting in January. Photo: Mohd Zakir/HT

Task force on developing Mumbai IFSC to look at collaborations with GIFT

Task force to also deliberate on the brand identity for the IFSC with three creative agencies scheduled to present their proposals on Thursday

Mumbai: A task force set up by the Centre and the Maharashtra government to develop an International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) in Mumbai will meet on Thursday and discuss the possibility of a collaboration with the Gujarat International Finance Tech-City (GIFT).

The task force, headed by minister of state for finance Jayant Sinha, held its first meeting in January.

“Though Gujarat has already established GIFT, the task force will look at opportunities for collaborations between GIFT and Mumbai IFSC. GIFT has the advantage of space which we do not have. But Mumbai, unlike GIFT, has the advantage of being a natural place for developing an international financial services centre. So the task force will look to leverage these advantages and collaborate," said task force member Kaustubh Dhavse, who is officer on special duty to Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis.

The meeting on Thursday will also deliberate on the brand identity for the IFSC with three creative agencies scheduled to present their proposals to the task force.

“Mumbai IFSC has to have a global and iconic brand identity which will represent the best and most unique features of this great city and make a strong global pitch for it," Dhavse said.

The state government has nominated Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan to the task force.

“For us the idea of an IFSC in Mumbai is not of a dry space where international finance happens. The Mumbai IFSC must also have a rich cultural, emotional and entertainment quotient to make a vibrant space. It must have the awe factor. We have roped in Amitabh Bachchan to bring in this aspect into our thinking. He is also engaged in film city modernization project and his inputs will be valuable," Dhavse said.

On Wednesday, the Economic Times reported that the Maharashtra government has roped in Nasdaq’s former president Magnus Bocker and ICICI Bank’s managing director Chanda Kochhar to join the task force.

At the Thursday meeting, Kochhar will make a presentation on opportunities for the Mumbai IFSC to tie up with financial centres like New York and London.

The Mumbai IFSC will be located in Mumbai’s first planned business district of Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) which has been developed by the state government entity Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA). U.P.S. Madan, the chairperson of the MMRDA, is on the task force.

“We lost out on the chance to develop India’s first international financial city in Mumbai because key decisions got held up during the previous government’s tenure. Now our best chance is to see if we could build an IFSC in BKC using the better political convergence between the centre and state," said a state government representative on the task force, who did not want to be named.

Apart from Jayant Sinha, the central government is represented by the secretary, department of economic affairs, on the task force. The state government nominees are the chief secretary, principal secretary (urban development), MMRDA commissioner and Dhavse. Architect Rahul Mehrotra has been nominated to suggest ideas to develop a flagship and iconic architectural monument for the Mumbai IFSC.

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