New Delhi: Foreign direct investment (FDI) into India increased by 16.5 per cent to $2.46 billion in March this year.
The FDI inflows were at $2.11 billion in the same month of last year, according to the data of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP).
For the entire 2015-16 fiscal ended March 31, the inflows grew by 29 per cent to $40 billion as against $30.93 billion in 2014-15.
FDI for 2015-16 was the highest since 2000-01. The services segment attracted the highest investments of $6.88 billion followed by computer hardware and software ($5.90 billion), trading business ($3.84 billion) and automobile industry ($2.52 billion).
Singapore toppled Mauritius as the top FDI source for FDI in India last fiscal.
India received $13.69 billion overseas inflows from Singapore, followed by Mauritius ($8.35 billion), the US ($4.19 billion), the Netherlands ($2.64 billion) and Japan ($2.61 billion).
The government has taken several steps to promote investments through a liberal FDI policy.
It is expected to soon take a decision on permitting 100 per cent FDI in the food processing sector through the FIPB approval route.
Foreign investment is considered crucial for India, which needs around USD 1 trillion for overhauling its infrastructure sector such as ports, airports and highways to boost growth.
A strong inflow of foreign investments will help improve the country’s balance of payments situation and strengthen the rupee value against other global currencies, especially the US dollar.