New Delhi: Indian companies, including billionaire Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd, raised over $3.83 billion from overseas markets through external commercial borrowings (ECBs) and foreign currency convertible bonds (FCCBs) in March, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said.
Of the total amount, nearly 117 companies mobilized $3.29 billion for various projects via the automatic route, under which approval is not required from the RBI or the government, while another $632.15 million were raised through the approval route, the central bank said in a statement.
Reliance Industries mopped $390 million for importing capital goods through automatic route.
Mangalore Refinery & Petrochemical garnered $250 million for modernization and Idea Cellular Ltd raised $150 million for modernization, both under the automatic route.
Rural Electrification Corp Ltd raised $448.92 million in two tranches for its power projects under the approval route, while Sasan Power Ltd raised $150 million under the similar route.
In September last year, the government increased the ECB cap with tenor of five years or more under the automatic route to $750 million from $500 million earlier, and doubled the ECB limit under the automatic route for the services sector to $200 million and for non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to $10 million from the earlier $5 million.
The government had already raised the limit on total borrowing by all companies in a single year to $30 billion from $10 billion.
Indian firms use ECBs as an additional source of funding to increase resources available in the domestic market. FCCBs are also governed by regulations similar to ECBs.