India's international financial services centre at the Gujarat International Finance Tech City (GIFT City) made its global mark by being named among the top three emerging business hubs in the world. Gujarat-based GIFT City, near Ahmedabad, is featured as one of the significant emerging international financial service centres (IFSCs) in the latest edition of 'Global Financial Centres Index 24 (GFCI)', released in London this week. GIFT is ranked third in the list of the GFCI report, which has highlighted 15 centres that are likely to become more significant in the next few years.
"It is a great achievement for GIFT IFSC to join the GFCI so early in its development as a financial centre and is very encouraging that so many respondents see GIFT as becoming more significant in the future," said Mark Yeandle, Director of Z/Yen Partners and the author of the Global Financial Centres Index series. GIFT also made a new entry in the main index of the GFCI and ranked 77 in the list of 100 global financial centres. The rank takes into consideration five major factors namely business environment, human capital, reputation, infrastructure & financial sector development.
This is a significant achievement for a centre entering for the first time in the main index, GIFT City noted. "The recognition of GIFT IFSC in list of most significant emerging financial centres and entry into main index of global financial centres by GFCI is the testimony of the contribution GIFT IFSC is making in the international financial services business," said Ajay Pandey, MD & Group CEO, GIFT City. "In a short span of three years, GIFTIFSC has been instrumental in unleashing and enhancing the international financial services potential of the country," he said.
He attributed the recognition to the "tremendous support and direction" provided by the government of India through the ministry of finance, ministry of commerce, the government of Gujarat, and by all the regulators namely RBI, SEBI & IRDA. "We at GIFT IFSC feel great pride to be featured in the same league as established centres like London, New York, Hong Kong, Singapore and Shanghai," added Pandey. Produced bi-annually by the China Development Institute (CDI) in Shenzhen and Z/Yen Partners in London a leading commercial think-tank, the GFCI report takes into account around 100 centres and 10 associate centres globally.
The report presents parameters for measuring the attractiveness of financial centres, apart from providing a strategic understanding into the growth and competitiveness of financial centres. The latest index notes that while well-established centres, such as New York, London, Singapore, Hong Kong and Tokyo have maintained their lead, emerging centres like GIFT City have made tremendous progress as a new economic and financial centre. GIFT City is a Gujarat government project, in partnership with IL&FS, aimed at creating India's first global financial hub.
GIFT is India's first multi-service SEZ with IFSC status, which will cater to the country's large financial services market by offering global firms world-class infrastructure and facilities. According to GIFT, the business hub is operational with approximately 12 leading Indian banks clocking foreign currency business transactions worth USD 12 billion. While IFSC Insurance sum insured business of 14 insurance companies and insurance brokers has crossed USD 30 billion, the daily average trading volume of two international exchanges (India INX and NSE IFSC) has crossed USD 1.5 billion