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The government is likely to soon decide on permitting Indian companies to list their equity shares overseas, according to an official.

Apart from providing an additional fund raising avenue for the corporates looking to expand and boost their business activities, overseas listing of shares would also help in bringing more capital into the country.

The official said many companies are interested in listing their equity shares in foreign countries.

Currently, quite a few Indian companies have American Depository Receipts (ADRs) that are traded in the US. Some other corporates have their Global Depository Receipts (GDRs).

The official said the corporate affairs ministry and markets regulator Sebi are in favour of allowing Indian companies to list their equity shares in foreign countries. Other departments and regulators are also expected to be on board, the official added.

A decision is likely soon, the official said, adding that changes would need to be done in the companies law and Sebi regulations for permitting listing of domestic companies overseas.

Further, the official said that only public companies are likely to be given permission for overseas listing of equity shares.

Under the Companies Act, public companies should have at least seven shareholders and have no restriction on transferability of their shares, among other criteria.

A depository receipt is a foreign currency denominated instrument, listed on an international exchange, issued by a foreign depository to a domestic custodian and includes GDRs. PTI RAM

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