Introduction to LEI and its importance in the Indian market

24 June 2024

What is an LEI?

A Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) is a unique, 20-digit alphanumeric identifier used to identify legal entities involved in financial transactions worldwide. It was developed after the 2008 financial crisis to increase transparency in the global financial system and minimise the risk of future financial crises. An LEI contains basic information about a company’s legal structure, including the legal name, address, and other identification details.

Why is the LEI important for companies in India?

Regulatory requirements:

In India, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has mandated using LEI numbers in various financial and regulatory reports. Companies involved in financial transactions must have an LEI number to comply with regulatory requirements.

Increased transparency and security:

The LEI number enables Indian companies to uniquely identify their business partners, which increases transparency in financial transactions. This reduces the risk of fraud and other financial crimes.

Improved market participation:

Indian companies can more easily participate in international financial markets with an LEI number. The global recognition of the LEI number strengthens companies’ credibility and trustworthiness in the international business environment.

More efficient business processes:

Using the LEI number simplifies business processes, especially regulatory reporting and compliance. This saves companies time and costs.

Overview of the global significance and role of the LEI in the financial world

The global introduction of the Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) has revolutionised how financial transactions are monitored. The LEI plays a crucial role in the financial world by enabling the standardised identification of business partners worldwide. This contributes to improved transparency and better risk management.

Strengthening financial stability:

Following the 2008 financial crisis, the LEI was introduced to increase transparency in the economic system and improve its strength. By uniquely identifying legal entities, financial institutions and regulators can better recognise and manage potential risks.

Supporting international cooperation:

Supporting international cooperation: The LEI facilitates international cooperation between regulators, financial institutions, and other stakeholders. Standardised identification enables a more efficient exchange of information and better monitoring of global financial activities.

Enabling efficient markets:

The LEI ensures standardised and transparent identification of market participants in international financial markets. This promotes trust and efficiency in the markets by improving the traceability and verifiability of transactions.

Simplification of regulatory reporting:

For companies and financial institutions, the LEI facilitates compliance with regulatory requirements by providing a unique & consistent identification of legal entities. This simplifies reporting and reduces the administrative burden.


The introduction of the Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) and the LEI number registration are crucial for the Indian market and the global financial world. In India, the LEI helps fulfil regulatory requirements, increase transparency and security and improve market participation. Globally, the LEI strengthens financial stability, supports international cooperation, enables more efficient markets and simplifies regulatory reporting. Compliance with these global standards is essential to enhance strength and confidence in the financial system.