Now, foreign investors allowed to invest in ‘Alternative Investment Fund’ without PAN

In what has come as a relief to non-residents investing in category I and II alternate investment fund (AIF) located in International Financial Services Center (IFSC), the income tax department has amended rules to exempt such entities from obtaining permanent account number (PAN) on a mandatory basis.

The carve-out for such investors from section 139A of the Income Tax Act is contingent on non-residents not earning income other than from said funds. Additionally, these funds are also required to deduct TDS on such income.

Further, the exempted non-resident investors are also required to furnish declaration containing name, address, country of residence and tax identification number of the country or specified territory of their residence. Among other conditions, to avail the relaxation, the funds are required to furnish quarterly statement for non-resident investors in the newly notified format.

Sunil Gidwani, partner at Nangia Andersen LLP, said, “The demand for exemption has been based on the fact that the fund operating from IFSC would be withholding tax payable by the investors. This would go a long way in making it easy for the fund managers to attract foreign investors in a fund set up in IFSC and would give impetus to IFSC as a fund jurisdiction.”

Under section 139 of the Income Tax Act, any person who has earned taxable income in the previous financial year must apply for PAN.