Eighteen years after the liberalisation process began in India, and just months before the general elections, the Congress-led government has decided to allow 100 per cent foreign direct investment in facsimile editions of foreign newspapers. Simultaneously, 26% FDI has been allowed in Indian editions of foreign magazines.
The following is the full text of the press statement issued by Rajeev Jain, Director (M&C), ministry of commerce and industry.
GOVERNMENT TO ALLOW FOREIGN INVESTMENTS IN FACSIMILE EDITION OF FOREIGN NEWSPAPERS
On a review of the extant policy on Foreign Direct Investment, Government of India has decided to allow foreign investment in publication of facsimile edition of foreign newspapers and Indian editions of foreign magazines dealing with news and current affairs.
The policy for foreign direct investment (FDI) in publication of facsimile edition of foreign newspapers include permitting 100 per cent FDI with prior approval of the Government for the publication of the facsimile edition, provided the FDI is by the owner of the original foreign newspaper whose facsimile edition is proposed to be brought out in India. The policy also specifies that, the publication can be undertaken only by an entity incorporated or registered in India under the provisions of the Companies Act, 1956. Also, the publication would be subject to the Guidelines for publication of newspapers and periodicals dealing with news and current affairs and publication of facsimile edition of foreign newspapers issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on March 31, 2006, as amended from time to time.
The policy for foreign investment in publication of Indian editions of foreign magazines dealing with news and current affairs includes, up to 26% of foreign investment, inclusive of FDI and investment by NRI/ PIOs/ FII; ‘magazine’, for these guidelines shall be defined as a periodical publication, brought out on a non- daily basis, containing public news or comments on public news; foreign investment shall be subject to the Guidelines for Publication of Indian editions of foreign magazines dealing with news and current affairs issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on December 4, 2008.