RBI need not meddle with market forces: CCI
If the RBI has to take note of CCI’s suggestions, it will need to incorporate specific clauses in its regulations to prevent anti-competitive practices. Significantly, the CCI has suggested that public sector banks be not given any preference over the private sector ones. It has also pitched for greater operational freedom for private banks.
There still are several entry barriers in branch licensing and ATM licensing besides locational restrictions, which were leading to distortions in the market, leaving just a few private players in the sector. These distortions have only grown because of heavy investments by banks in government securities, leading to ‘lazy banking’, directed credit and cross-subsidisation of public sector banks.
The CCI has also asked the RBI that it be kept informed of instances of anti-competitive practices arising out of mergers and acquisitions in the sector as well as abuse of position by any big player. The move follows CCI’s observation that the banking sector, despite considerable liberalisation, is still dominated by public sector banks that account for 75% of the market share.
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) had,
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