Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows hit an all-time high of $60.1 billion in 2016-17, the commerce and industry ministry said on Friday, as the Narendra Modi government eased rules to lure global conglomerates to set up shop in sectors such as defence and railways.
In the last three years, the government has eased 87 FDI rules across 21 sectors to accelerate economic growth and boost jobs.
"The country has now become the topmost attractive destination for foreign investment," the ministry said in a statement.
FDI inflows were at $55.6 billion for the year ending March 2016, which was a record. In 2016-17, the FDI inflows were even higher at $60.08 billion.
Since 2014, the Modi government opened up "conservative" sectors like rail infrastructure and defence. FDI reforms were also carried out in financial sector, medical devices and construction sectors.
FDI rules were radically overhauled across sectors such as broadcasting, retail trading and air transport. The Modi government amended legislation to hike the foreign investment cap to 49 per cent in insurance and pension from the earlier 26 per cent.
"The momentum of positive business climate was further ignited with launch of Make in India initiative in September 2014," the ministry said.
In addition, initiatives such as introduction of composite caps in the FDI policy and raising the FIPB approval limit were also undertaken to promote ease of doing business in the country.
For retail trading of food products, the government permitted 100 per cent FDI with unqualified condition that such food products have to be manufactured or produced in India.
Source: Times of Oman