Defying the Covid-induced disruptions, foreign direct investment (FDI) in equities in India surged 40% in the first three quarters of this fiscal to a record $51.5 billion.
Gross FDI inflows — which include FDI in equities, reinvested earnings, equity capital of unincorporated bodies and other capital — rose 22% year-on-year to as much as $67.5 billion between April and December 2020, showed the data released by the commerce and industry ministry on Thursday. Total inflows in December alone jumped 24% from a year earlier to $9.2 billion.
Inflows were boosted by those into the digital sector. Analysts have pointed out that a sizable chunk of these was drawn by Reliance Jio alone.
The FDI inflows take place at a time when domestic private investments have remained elusive in recent years. Investments remain critical to the country’s economic resurgence, as private consumption has been badly bruised by income losses in the aftermath of the pandemic.
According to a report by Unctad in January, India and China were two major “outliers” in a gloomy year for FDI, as global inflows plunged 42% on year in the calendar year 2020 to $859 billion, the lowest level since the 1990s.