Twenty Five Years of Financial Sector Reforms in India

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Soon after Independence in 1947, the government of India followed a policy of social control of important financial institutions. As a result of state domination, India's monetary and financial system was characterized by barriers to entry, control over pricing of financial assets, high transaction costs, and restrictions on movement of funds from one market segment to another. It was against this backdrop that wide-ranging financial sector reforms were introduced as an integral part of the economic reforms program started in the early 1990s. These reforms have paved the way for integration among various segments of the financial system. It is widely accepted that reduction/removal of financial repression has enhanced the efficiency and potential growth of the Indian economy. Restrictions on pricing of assets have been removed, along with the introduction of new instruments. Technological infrastructure has also been strengthened. The general approach to financial sector reforms has been a transparent, collaborative, and consultative process aimed at resolving many possible dilemmas. The reform process itself has been characterized by caution with a slant towards preserving stability, careful sequencing of measures, mutually reinforcing monetary initiatives, and ensuring consistency and complementarity with other policies. This book explains and examines at length the changes which have swept India's financial sector since 1991. [Subject: Business & Economics, Investment, India Studies, Trade]