Finally, Swiss banking major UBS AG has received the commercial banking licence in India. The The bank has received a scheduled banking licence from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), according to a recent notfication by the central bank.
The bank plans to start commercial operations by July and will offer high-end retail banking and fixed-income business. It is initially planning to invest $50 million for the banking operations in the country.
The bank is headed by Manisha Girotra in India. UBS already offers investment banking and other services in the country. It also runs an outsourcing unit, UBS India Service Centre, in India since June 2006.
UBS recently agreed to pay $780 million and disclose the names of some secret account holders to avoid prosecution US authorities. The US authorities were pursuing criminal fraud charges against the bank allegedly for assisting rich Americans to evade taxes. It also had faced a similar trouble in India when it refused to co-operate in the investigation of Hasan Ali Khan, a controversial businessman alleged for money laundering by Indian government.
The other scheduled foreign banks in India are American Express Bank Ltd, Bank of America, Bank of Tokyo Ltd, Banquc Nationale de Paris, Barclays Bank Plc, Citi Bank, Deutsche Bank, Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, Standard Chartered Bank, Dresdner Bank AG, among others..