Trade & investment

Banking Commission takes the road with first meeting in India

  • 11 December 2003

The ICC Banking Commission met in India for the first time this week, with the revision of ICC's rules on documentary credits the top agenda item.

Said Dieter Kiefer, Banking Commission chairman: “It is important that we take the Commission on the road so that those who use ICC banking rules, such as those on documentary credits and collections, can have an opportunity to participate in commission debates.”

The New Delhi meeting, attended by more than 150 delegates was the first opportunity for the commission to have a full-fledged discussion on the revision of UCP 500, ICC’s universally used rules on letters of credit. The revision process, which got underway early this year, is progressing steadily, but a number of thorny issues remain to be resolved. Drafting and consulting groups working on the text will meet throughout 2004.

The Indian delegates included top figures in Indian banking, among them A.K Purwar, Chairman of the State Bank of India; Nachiket Mor, Executive Director of ICICI Bank Ltd; and Sudhakar Gande, Managing Director of Global Trust Bank Ltd. A keynote speaker was Ms K.J. Udeshi, Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

Ms Udeshi told delegates that Indian lending rates were likely to come down once banks adopt the new benchmark prime lending rate (PLR), which comes into effect from 1 January. She also underlined the importance of the fight against money laundering, saying that RBI was putting in place a set of rules and regulations, likely to be ready in April 2004, to combat these practices.

Said ICC Banking Commission Chairman Kiefer: “We left this conference with the sense that India is a country on the move and that several Indian banks will soon be world class players.”

The meeting was under the patronage of ICC India and its President, Onkar S. Kanwar, who is Chairman and Managing Director of Apollo Tyres Ltd.