The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) today released on its website the ‘Timelines for Regulatory Approvals’ and ‘Citizens’ Charter’ for delivery of services as part of implementation of the non-legislative recommendations of the Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission (FSLRC).

These timelines are indicative. If departments are likely to exceed the timeline, they will revert to the applicant.

In case an applicant does not get a response within the indicated timeline, they can approach the head of the concerned department. The department head will respond with the status of the application, the reason for delay, request for additional information, if any, as well as the likely time for disposal of the application.

Background

As per one recommendation of the FSLRC, all regulators are required to move to a time-defined approval process, subject to applicable laws, for all permissions including licence to do business, as well as launch of products and services.

Accordingly, the Reserve Bank has prepared timelines for regulatory approvals by its various departments and a Citizens’ Charter for delivery of services by its departments which have public interface.

—–

Citizens’ Charter

I. Public Accounts Department

Sr. No.

Description of Service

Time taken for providing Service

1.

Delivery of receipted challans tendered with cash Within 20 minutes (depending upon volume and cash tendered)

2.

Delivery of receipted challans tendered with cheques issued by Government departments maintaining accounts with Reserve Bank of India Within 30 minutes

3.

Delivery of receipted challans tendered with local cheques drawn on other banks After 3 clear working days

4.

Delivery of receipted challans tendered with outstation cheques 7 days (for the four Metros)
15 days for other centers

5.

Submission of scrolls to Government departments On next working day

6.

Submission of monthly statements to Government departments On second working day of the following month

7.

Cash withdrawal by Government through cheques 20 minutes (Depending upon volume of withdrawal)

8.

Receipt of debit/credit scrolls from agency banks and reimbursement of claims/settlement Day to day basis

II. Public Debt Office

Sr. No. Description of Service Time taken for providing Service

1.

Issue of Duplicate Securities
(a) Government Promissory (G.P.)Notes
3 months from the date of publication in the Government Gazette
(b) Duplicate Receipt Within two days of admission of claim

2.

Payment of Interest Warrant
(a) Stock Certificate On due date
(b) Subsidiary General Ledger (SGL) On due date
(c) Savings Bonds On due date

3.

(a)Transfer

4 days

(b)Change of enfacement 2 days from the date of receipt of special cancellation advice from the parent PDO
(c) Conversion

4 days

4.

Credit to SGL account

3 days

5.

Issue of scrip by debit to SGL

2 days

6.

Receipt of Securities for repayment

5 days

7.

SGL Transfer

1 day

8.

Registration of Power of Attorney and Certification

1 day

9.

Other Services
(a) Examination

1 day

(b) Certificate of Registry of sale power

1 day

(c) Renewal

6 days

(d) Withdrawal from safe custody

1 day

10.

Revalidation of Interest Warrant

1 day

11.

Registration of Nomination

1 day

III. Deposit Accounts Department

Sr. No.

Description of Service

Time taken for providing Service

1.

Transfer (of funds from one bank’s current account to another bank’s current account in RBI) Immediately once the instrument is received.

2.

Clearing

3 days

3.

Receipt of Cash 15 minutes (depending on the volume of tender)

4.

Withdrawal of Cash 20 minutes (depending on the volume of tender)

5.

Issue of Demand Draft

1 hour

6.

Issue of cheque books

20 minutes

7.

Furnishing of daily statement of accounts The statements are available instantly for the account holders at their end online either in CBS-E-kuber portal or through Telebanking

8.

Refinance facility and disbursement of loans

Same day

The time frame indicates clear working days.

IV. Foreign Exchange Department

Sr. No.

Description of Service

Time taken for providing Service

1.

External Commercial Borrowing (ECB) /
Foreign Currency Convertible Bonds (FCCB)
Trade Credit under approval route

7 days

Post servicing of automatic cases

15 days

ECB/FCCB under approval route

30 days

2.

Foreign Investment
Transfer of Shares (requiring prior RBI approval)

40 days

Pledge of Shares

40 days

Issue of licence for Branch/ Liaison Office

40 days

Refund of advance remittance

7 days

Foreign Collaboration – General Permission Route (FC-GPR) to be taken on record

40 days

3.

Indian Investment Abroad
Investment in Overseas Joint Ventures and Wholly Owned Subsidiaries (not covered by automatic route)

40 days

Disinvestment of shares in Overseas Joint Ventures/ Subsidiaries

40 days

Other Overseas Investment under approval route

40 days

Allotment of Unique Identification Number (UIN) Instantly auto generated by the online reporting system

4.

Exports
Permission for waiving GR Form formalities for exports

7 days

Set Off / Write Off

7 days

Export receivables / payables outside ACU mechanism

7 days

Refund / retention of advance

7 days

Imports
Direct imports

7 days

Third country / Merchanting trade / Warehousing

7 days

Import receivables / payables outside ACU mechanism

7 days

Items under Schedule III of Current Account Transaction (CAT) Rules – release of exchange beyond the stipulated limits
(i) Travel related purposes

7 days

(ii) Non-travel related purposes

7 days

5.

Others
Issue / Renewal of Money Changer’s licence

40 days

Compounding of contraventions of FEMA

180 days

V. Issue Department

The availability and modes of services relating to banknotes and coins will undergo changes on account of implementation of the policy for shifting of retail functions pertaining to currency management services from RBI to the commercial banks. The Citizens’ Charter is being appropriately modified to incorporate the above.

Notes:
These timelines are indicative and exclude the date of submission of the application and are subject to the application being complete in all respects.

If departments are likely to exceed the timeline, they will revert to the applicant.

In case an applicant does not get a response within the indicated timeline, they can approach the head of the concerned department. The department head will respond with the status of the application, the reason for delay, request for additional information, if any, as well as the likely time for disposal of the application.

——

Timelines for Regulatory Approvals

I. Department of Banking Operations and Development

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

1.

Private Bank Licence- In principle approval

90 days@

2.

Approval to banks for acquisition/transfer of shares of five per cent or more of paid up equity share capital of the bank

90 days

3.

Approval to banks for holding non-banking assets beyond 7 and up to 12 years, in terms of Section 9 of Banking Regulation Act, 1949

15 days

4.

‘In principle’ approval to banks for IPO, preferential issues of capital and qualified institutional placements

30 days

5.

Approval to banks for redemption of subordinated debt

15 days

6.

Approval to banks for establishing a subsidiary/joint venture/associate/making strategic investments in financial services companies

45 days

7.

Approval to banks for offering activities such as investment advisory services, portfolio management services or venturing into stock broking, mutual funds, venture capital funds, insurance or pension management departmentally

45 days

8.

Permission to banks for expanding the scope of para-banking activities of the bank/it’s subsidiary

45 days

9.

Permission to banks to retain investments in non-financial services companies beyond the prescribed prudential limits

45 days

10.

Approval to foreign banks having their business in India for substitution of Government / approved Securities held under Section 11(2)(b) of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949

5 days

11.

Approval to foreign banks having their business in India for deposit/withdrawal of Government / approved Securities held under Section 11(2)(b) of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949

5 days

12.

Appointment / re-appointment of whole time directors (MD & CEO / EDs/ Jt. MDs ) and Part-time Chairmen (non-whole time directors) in Private Sector Banks, including LABs

90 days

13.

Appointment / re-appointment of CEOs of Foreign Banks operating in India

90 days

14.

Remuneration Bonus and Employee Stock Option(ESOP) of whole time directors (MD & CEO / EDs/ Jt. MDs ) and Part-time Chairmen (non-whole time directors) of Private Sector Banks, including LABs

60 days

15.

Remuneration, Bonus and Employee Stock Option of CEOs of Foreign Banks operating in India

60 days

16.

Opening of branches under Annual Branch Expansion Plan (ABEP) in respect of banks for which the general permission granted to open the branches in Tier 1 centres in terms of Circular DBOD.BAPD. Nos. 54 & 60/ 22.01.001/ 2013- 14 dated September 19, and October 21, 2013 has been withdrawn

30 days

17.

Shifting of sole rural branches of banks outside the centre / village

15 days

18.

Shifting of rural branches of banks outside the block

15 days

19.

Part- shifting of a branch of bank

15 days

20.

Conversion of a rural branch of bank into satellite office

15 days

21.

Merger of Sole Rural / Semi Urban Branch of bank

15 days

22.

Closure of Rural Branches of banks

15 days

23.

Opening of branches under Annual Branch Expansion Plan (ABEP) of Local Area Banks

30 days

24.

Advances to banks’ Directors

90 days

25.

Staff Incentive Schemes by banks for deposit mobilization

90 days

26.

Authorisation for import of gold/silver by banks

60 days

@ The timeline for issue of in-principle approval for private sector bank licences commences from receipt of report from the Independent External Advisory Committee.

II. Department of Banking Supervision

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

1.

Approval given to banks and Financial Institutions for Statutory Central Auditors and Statutory Branch Auditors
i) Public Sector Banks:
a) Statutory Central Auditors

15 days

b) Statutory Branch Auditors

30 days

ii) Private Sector Banks/Foreign Banks:
a) Statutory Central Auditors

30 days

b) Statutory Branch Auditors

30 days

iii) Overseas branches of Indian Banks:
Statutory Auditors

30 days

iv) Select Financial Institutions:
Statutory Auditors

21 days

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III. Department of Currency Management/ Issue Department

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

1.

Opening of currency chests (CCs) by banks

  • In-principle Approval for CCs
  • Approval for Construction of CCs
  • Final Approval for CCs
Approval in Three Stages

Stage I – 15 days
Stage II – 15 days
Stage III – Final Approval 10 days

IV. Department of Non-Banking Supervision

Sr. No

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

SRO

1.

Recognition to Self-Regulatory Organisation (SRO)

45 days

Non-Banking Finance Companies(NBFCs)

2.

Issue of Certificate of Registration
(other than Securitization and Reconstruction Companies)

45 days

3.

NOC to sponsor Infrastructure Debt Fund by NBFC

30 days

4.

Change of control/ownership/management of an NBFC

30 days

5.

Change of name

30 days

6.

Shifting of company’s Registered Office and request for issue of fresh Certificate of Registration

30 days

7.

Issue of NOC for setting up of subsidiary/ Wholly Owned Subsidiary overseas

30 days

8.

Approval for exemption from the exposure norms in cases where public funds are not accepted

30 days

9.

Permission to invest in insurance companies

30 days

10.

Permission to convert NBFC from Category A (Accepting Deposits) to Category B (Non-Deposit Accepting)

30 days

11.

Conversion of existing NBFCs to other categories such as Core Investment Companies-Non Deposit taking-Systemically Important (CIC-ND-SI) , NBFC-Micro Finance Institutions (NBFC-MFIs), NBFC-Infrastructure Finance Companies (IFCs) and NBFC-Factors

30 days

12.

Opening of branches (> 1000 in number) by NBFCs primarily into lending against gold jewellery

30 days

13.

Opening of branches by NBFCs-Deposit taking

30 days

14.

Issue of co-branded credit cards and pre-paid payment instruments

30 days

15.

Distribution of mutual fund products

30 days

V. Department of Payment and Settlement Systems

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

Financial Market Infrastructure

1.

Authorisation for Financial Market Infrastructure e.g. Central Counter Party, Trade Repository, etc.

120 days @

Retail Payment System

2.

Authorisation for Retail Payment System (including Card Payment Networks, Cross Border Money Transfer, ATM Network, Prepaid Payment Instrument Operators, White Label ATM Operators, etc.)

120 days #

@ –The proposals are put up for approval to Board for Payment and Settlement Systems (BPSS) which meets once in a quarter.

# – Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 [Sec 7(4)] states that RBI shall endeavour to dispose of applications for Authorisation within six months from the date of filing. The proposals get approved in the BPSS meeting that meets once in a quarter.

VI. Foreign Exchange Department

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

1.

a) Trade Credit under approval route

7 days

b) Post servicing of External Commercial Borrowing (ECB)/ Foreign Currency Convertible Bond (FCCB) under Automatic and Approval route

15 days

c) ECB/FCCB proposals under Approval route

30 days

2.

NOC/approval for

  1. Employee Stock Ownership Plan(ESOP) not covered under general permission
  2. Rights Issue not covered under general permission
  3. Permission for investment by erstwhile Overseas Corporate Body(OCB)
  4. NOC for repatriation of share application money beyond 180 days
  5. Extension for retention of share application money beyond 180 days
  6. Conversion of shares from non-repatriation basis to repatriation basis
  7. Approval for holding share application money in foreign currency in India/ abroad
  8. Approval for registration of Foreign Venture Capital Investor(FVCI)
  9. Increase in holdings in a company beyond the limit to 24 % up to sectoral cap/ statutory ceiling

30 days

  1. Approval for Pledge of shares

40 days

3.

Receipt of Capital Contribution

30 days

4.

a)Transfer of shares from Non Resident Indian (NRI) to Non Resident(NR)

40 days

b) Gift of shares from Resident to NRI
c) Delay in reporting
d) Permission for opening of escrow account by Authorised Dealer(AD) Category – I bank beyond the period of 6 months for effecting transfer of shares

60 days

5.

a) Permission for establishment of new Liaison Office(LO)/ Branch Office(BO) in India under Approval Route

40 days

b) Approval for establishing additional LO/BO in India.
c) Permission for shifting LO/BO to another city.

10 days on receipt of Government approval

d) Permission for opening LO/BO/ Project Office(PO) by entities from China, Hong Kong, Macau, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and Iran

10 days on receipt of Government approval

e) Permission for establishing PO in India which require GOI approval

10 days on receipt of Government approval

6.

Permission to open foreign currency account in India

60 days

7.

To open foreign currency account outside India

60 days

8.

To open Non Resident Ordinary(NRO) account in consultation with the MoF, GoI

30 days on receipt of Government approval

9.

To receive salary outside India in foreign currency account

90 days

10.

For transfer/acquisition of immovable property not covered under general permission in terms of Foreign Exchange Management Act(FEMA) 21

30 days on receipt of Government approval

11.

Approvals given for proposals regarding miscellaneous external payments of permissible Current and Capital Account transactions

30 days

12.

a) Investment in Overseas Joint Ventures and Wholly Owned Subsidiary(WOS) (not covered by automatic route)
b) Other overseas Investment under approval route

40 days

c) Disinvestment of shares in Overseas Joint Ventures / Subsidiaries

40 days

d) Allotment of Unique Identification Number (UIN)

Instant online allotment

13.

Issue and Renewal of fresh AD Category(Cat)-I licence

30 days

14.

Issue of fresh AD Cat-II licence

90 days

15.

Issue and Renewal of fresh AD Cat-III licence

30 days

16.

Issue of fresh licence to conduct Money Transfer Service Scheme(MTSS) business

45 days

17.

Issue of first permission to undertake Rupee Drawing Arrangement (RDA) scheme

30 days

18.

Approvals to take Insurance policies from insurance companies in foreign countries.

7 days

19.

Compounding of contraventions of FEMA

180 days

20.

Issue/ Renewal of Money Changer’s licence

40 days

VII. Financial Markets Department

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

1.

NDS-CALL membership

7 days*

2.

Intra-day Limit (IDL) setting for RTGS members

7 days*

* The timeline indicates clear working days, excluding date of receipt of application

VIII. Internal Debt Management Department

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

Bank Primary Dealers (carrying PD business departmentally)

1.

1. Licence for Primary Dealer Business

90 days

2. Termination of PD licence

90 days

Standalone Primary Dealers

2.

3. Licence for Primary Dealer Business

90 days

4. Termination of PD licence

90 days

5. Change in shareholding pattern

45 days

6. For undertaking Portfolio Management Services

60 days

7. To act as market makers for the Credit Default Swaps (CDS)

45 days

8. Diversification of activities by PD

45 days

9. Declaration of Dividend –
(In case there are special reasons or difficulties for any PD in strictly adhering to the guidelines relating to Dividend, it may approach RBI in advance for an appropriate ad hoc dispensation in this regard)

45 days

IX. Rural Planning and Credit Department

Regulatory approvals granted without involving other departments/agencies

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

State and Central Co-op. Banks

1.

Grant of loan/advance against the security of NRE deposits to a resident individual/ firm/ company in India

30 days

2.

Disposal of non-banking assets

30 days

3.

Investment in shares of other Co-operative Societies situated outside the area of the co-operative bank

30 days

4.

Permission to make investments in non-SLR securities

30 days

5.

Retirement of investments made in the deposits of PSUs / Companies / Corporations / UCBs / NBFCs, etc. and investments in mutual funds, non- PSU bonds – Approval of time-bound programme by Regional Office

30 days

Regulatory approvals involving inter-office/inter-agency coordination

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

State and Central Co-op. Banks

1.

Grant of banking licence

30 days

2.

Permission to make investments in non-PSU bonds where prescribed criteria are not met

30 days

3.

Permission to issue Long Term (Subordinated) Deposits and Innovative Perpetual Debt Instruments

30 days

4.

Permission to take up insurance business and renewal thereof

30 days

5.

Permission for commencing co-branded credit card business and renewal of permission

30 days

State Co-op. Banks

6.

Grant of branch licence to State Co-op. banks

30 days

7.

Grant of permission to open Extension Counters

30 days

8.

Permission for opening specialized branches for conducting forex business, etc., and for up-gradation of existing extension counters into full-fledged branches

30 days

9.

Permission for shifting of a bank branch to a different locality/municipal ward other than the one mentioned in the licence

30 days

10.

Inclusion in the 2nd Schedule to RBI Act 1934

30 days

Regional Rural Banks

11.

Inclusion in Second Schedule of RBI Act

45 days

12.

Exclusion from Second Schedule of RBI Act

45 days

13.

Grant of branch licence

45 days

14.

Grant of licence for opening of service branch, Regional Offices

45 days

15.

Permission for shifting of branches outside the locality/municipal ward at semi-urban / urban / metropolitan centres

45 days

16.

Permission of conversion of satellite offices into full-fledged branches

45 days

17.

Permission for opening of extension counters

45 days

18.

Permission for upgradation of extension counters into full-fledged branches

45 days

19.

Permission for setting up of ultra-small branches

45 days

20.

Grant of branch licence

45 days

21.

Grant of licence for opening of service branch, Regional Offices.

45 days

22.

Permission for shifting of branches outside the locality/municipal ward at semi-urban / urban / metropolitan centres

45 days

23.

Appropriation from the Reserve Fund under Section 17(2) of the BR Act, 1949

45 days

X. Urban Banks Department

Sr. No.

Description of Regulatory Approval

Time required

1. Approvals/Permissions given by Central Office

1.

Extension of Area of Operation
i) beyond adjoining districts and to the entire State of registration
ii) beyond the State of registration
iii) for multi-state UCBs

90 days

2.

Shifting of branches – Request from UCBs not conforming to the FSWM (Financially Sound and Well Managed) criteria for shifting of their offices/branches outside the centre/State

90 days

3.

Shifting of branches of UCBs outside the State of registration

90 days

4.

Permission to undertake intra-day short selling of G-Secs

90 days

5.

Permission to extend unsecured advances up to 25% of total assets subject to conditions prescribed in our circular dated April 3, 2010

90 days

6.

Remission of Debt of Director related loans

90 days

7.

Grant of permission for raising Long Term (Subordinated) Deposits (LTD)/ Perpetual Non-Cumulative Preference Shares (PNCPS)/ Conversion of deposits to equity

90 days

2. Approvals/Permissions given by Regional Offices

8.

Shifting of offices to different wards/municipal areas

45 days

9.

Extension of time for submission of Form – V (Furnishing of details of Branches opened)

90 days

10.

Change of address to same municipal ward, post issue of authorization but before opening of branch

90 days

11.

Authorisation for opening of branches under Annual Business Plan and new off-site ATMs

90 days

12.

Approval for opening of specialized branches by UCBs

90 days

13.

Permission to extend internet banking facility to customers

90 days

14.

Permission for payment of dividend

90 days

15.

Change in name of bank

90 days

16.

Authorization to maintain/renew NRE accounts

90 days

3. Other applications received by the Department for recommendations but approvals/permissions granted by other Departments /Organisations

17.

Approvals related to Centralised Payment System

90 days

18.

MTSS

90 days

19.

AD-I and AD-II category licences

90 days

20.

Opening of current account/SGL account

45 days

21.

Clearing House memberships

45 days

22.

NDS-OM Membership

90 days

23.

Permission to extend mobile banking to customers

90 days

24.

Banker to Issue

90 days

25.

Merchant Banking

90 days

Footnotes:

  1. All the above estimated timelines for regulatory approvals of various departments (I to X) are anticipated to be met by in most cases, but a few may exceed these timelines.

  2. If departments are likely to exceed the timeline, they will revert to the applicant.

  3. In case an applicant does not get a response within the indicated timeline, they can approach the head of the concerned department. The department head will respond with the status of the application, the reason for delay, request for additional information, if any, as well as the likely time for disposal of the application.

  4. In some situations, a change in procedure or in the environment will change the estimated time for action. In such cases, the timeline for approval will be modified appropriately.

  5. The timelines given in column 3 for all above Departments (I to X) are subject to receipt of complete information/documents from the banks/Institutions concerned as well as receipt of regulatory/supervisory inputs/due diligence reports/approvals from other regulators and the concerned Government Agencies/Departments.

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