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SEBI approves simpler foreign investment rules

A rupee note is seen next to the portrait of Goddess of wealth Laxmi inside a shop in Mumbai August 21, 2013. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui/Files

MUMBAI (Reuters) - Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has approved new rules aimed at streamlining the registration process for foreign investors, aiming to attract vital inflows needed to narrow a record high current account deficit.

The regulations, first announced at a June board meeting of SEBI, are intended to simplify paperwork and remove some of the restrictions that had made buying domestic assets onerous.

The approval of the rules at SEBI's board meeting on Saturday comes as policy makers scramble to reverse some of the capital outflows from the country since late May that have hit bonds and the rupee.

The rules, which for instance reduce the number of disclosures that foreign investors need to make, are part of a slew of regulatory steps to attract foreign investors, including simplifying the auction system to buy into domestic bonds.

(Reporting by Himank Sharma; Editing by David Holmes)