If India is a bridge between a developed western world and Global South, then GIFT City is the gateway, said finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman at the 10th Vibrant Gujarat Summit on Thursday.

“India can be that bridge between developed western world and the global south. If we are a bridge, the gateway is here in GIFT City,” said Sitharaman, while addressing a seminar on “GIFT City: An aspiration of Modern India” at Gandhinagar.

“All financial hubs over the centuries, across the world, looked at capital as the primary concern. Capital aspect dominated most of these financial economic zones, be it Hongkong, Singapore, the US, Germany, London. But GIFT City has the unique distinction where technology has been fused with finance. This fusion gives us a lead advantage. This advantage is coming when India is growing fastest in the world,” she said while sharing the contents of the discussion of three-hour long closed-door meeting held by Prime Minister Narendra Modi with 30 Global CEOs at GIFT City on Wednesday evening as part of the Vibrant Gujarat summit.

Also read: ₹6,200-cr 3-phase expansion plan proposes to treble GIFT City area to 3,430 acres

The finance minister pointed out that GIFT IFSC has three exchanges, 25 banks (of which 9 are foreign), 26 aircraft leasing units who have collectively leased out 136 assets, 80 fund managers, 29 insurance entities and 8 ship leasing entities.

“The number of entities registered in IFSCA were only 129 in 2020, but as of October 2023 there are 580 entities and 78 management facilities have registered, and 76 Alternative Investment Funds are here. The total targeted corpus is $20 billion,” she said.

“The much awaited direct listing of stocks in GIFT IFSC was announced earlier. I am confident that it will happen at the earliest and that Indian companies will be able to access global funds easily, being listed in India,” Sitharaman added.

Also read: Modi era hailed as Global CEOs pledge investments for Gujarat 

Speaking at the event GIFT City Chairman Hasmukh Adhia said the government is trying to sort out “issues” related to aircraft lessors in GIFT City for attracting aircraft leasing business from Ireland.

Asking investors to invest in the GIFT City, Gujarat’s finance minister Kanu Desai said “those who will come early, will get a lot of benefits.”