India insurance regulator allows exemptions for holdings in merged HDFC Bank

MUMBAI (Reuters) – India’s insurance regulator has allowed insurance companies to classify debt securities of HDFC Ltd under the ‘housing and infrastructure’ category, it said in a notification on Friday.

HDFC Ltd was merged with HDFC Bank on July 1, following which debt securities of the housing financier had been transferred to the bank.

Insurance companies feared they would breach investment limits prescribed for the financial sector after the merger if bonds of HDFC were classified under that segment.

Bonds of HDFC Ltd will be treated as exposure to housing and infrastructure till maturity, the Insurance Regulatory Development Authority (IRDA) clarified.

IRDA has also given insurance companies time till June 30, 2024, to comply with norms for maximum exposure to a single entity in the case of HDFC Bank.

Some insurance companies, which held shares of both HDFC and HDFC Bank, may breach these exposure norms.

(Reporting by Ira Dugal; editing by Eileen Soreng)