TheUnion Government has radically liberalized the FDI regime with the objective ofproviding major impetus to employment and job creation in India. This is thesecond major reform after the last radical changes announced in November 2015.Now most of the sectors would be under automatic-approval route, except a smallnegative list. With these changes, India is now the most open economy in theworld for FDI.
Accordingly,the government has decided to introduce a number of amendments in the FDIpolicy. Changes introduced in the policy include increase in sectoral caps,bringing more activities under automatic route, and easing of conditions forforeign investment. These amendments seek to further simplify the regulationsgoverning FDI in the country and make India an attractive destination forforeign investors. Details of these changes in broadcast sector are givenbelow.
FDI policy onbroadcasting carriage services has also been amended. New sectoral caps andentry routes are as under
New Cap and Route
Teleports (setting up of up-linking HUBs/Teleports);
Direct to home (DTH);
Cable networks (multi-system operators (MSOs) operating at national or state or district level and undertaking upgradation of networks toward digitization and addressability);
Head-end-in-the-sky broadcasting service (HITS)
Cable networks (other MSOs not undertaking upgradation of networks toward digitization and addressability and local cable operators (LCOs)
Infusion of fresh foreign investment, beyond 49 percent in a company not seeking license/permission from sectoral ministry, resulting in change in the ownership pattern or transfer of stake by existing investor to new foreign investor, will require FIPB approval