The Reserve Bank today said in- principle approval for setting up of new banks will now be valid for 18 months, up from earlier proposed one year.
Issuing clarification to queries on new bank licences, the RBI said the companies which would be eligible to apply must have a public shareholding of at least 51 per cent. "..companies forming part of the Promoter Group whereof companies in which the public hold not less than 51 per cent of the voting equity shares shall hold not less than 51 per cent of the total voting equity shares of the NOFHC (holding company)", it said. Besides, the intending applicants would have to approach other regulators to bring in entities regulated by them under the bank holding company, the RBI said. It further said only non-financial services companies and non-operative financial holding companies in the promoter Group would be allowed to hold shares in the holding company. Coming out with guidelines on new bank licences in February, the RBI had said corporates and public sector entities with sound credentials, Rs 500 crore capital and a minimum track record of 10 years would be allowed to enter the banking business. Those seeking to set up a bank would have to submit applications by July 1, 2013.
The RBI will display names of applicants on its Website. The RBI said it had said received 443 queries from 34 individuals/organisations.