Best Demat Account for NRIs – [2019]

Demat Account for NRIs

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We all know that the Indian stock market is booming and this is the right time to make an investment in the stocks, thereby earning some profit by trading.

The Demat account for NRIs facilitates Indians living outside India to make an investment in the Indian Stock Market and thereafter trade.

If you too are an NRI looking into investing in the Indian Stock Market, then this article is just for you, as we will be discussing all that you need to know about Demat account for NRIs.

Now let us look into some of the basics of NRI Demat Account,

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Who Is Considered To Be An NRI?

Non-Resident Indian (NRI) is a person who holds an Indian passport, but has relocated top another country for more than 180 days.

How an NRI Can Start Trading In The Indian Stock Market?

An NRI can start investing Stocks, Mutual Funds, IPOs, etc. in India, by taking the first step that is to open NRI Demat account.

The NRI Demat Account is just like a Demat Account for a resident of India and is opened as well as operated in the exact same way as that of resident Indian account.

Moreover, one should also note that the NRI Demat Account Charges are the same as a resident Indian demat account.

But while opening the NRI demat account; one has to mention the type of demat account as NRI Demat Account, Repatriable or Non-Repatriable.

NRI Demat Account

The NRI Demat Account is linked with the NRO or NRE bank account and the proceedings from the sale of shares; dividends are directly deposited into the linked bank account. One must note that, according to the guidelines of the RBI, an NRI should maintain two separate accounts for repatriable and non-repatriable

An NRI customer can open multiple demat accounts on the same name with different brokers, however, only one demat account is allowed per depository participant/ stockbroker.

Types of NRI Demat Account 

The NRI Demat Account can be majorly classified into two subtypes:

  • NRE Account
  • NRO Account

Now let us discuss in little detail,

NRE Account

An NRI can start investing in the shares of Indian companies by holding a NRE Account. A Non-Resident External Account (NRE), enables the NRI to transfer their assets earned in other countries into Indian denomination.

By holding just the NRE account, the NRI has to go through the Portfolio Investment Scheme (PIS) so as to invest in the equity segment by buying the shares or debentures of Indian companies, which are registered on the Indian Stock Market.

NRO Account

An NRI can save his/ her earnings in Indian rupees in Non-Resident Ordinary Account (NRO). The NRO Account enables NRI to trade across not only equity but also the derivative segment.

How to open a Demat Account for NRIs?

The process of opening an NRI Demat Account is quite simple as the opening of the NRI demat account does not require any approval from RBI.

One should note NRI Demat Account Opening Service is provided by all the major stockbrokers and banks of India.

An NRI Customer should have the following accounts or permissions prior to opening a demat account:

  • PAN Card
  • NRI Bank Account (NRE or NRO)
  • PIS approval by RBI

The documents that are required for opening an NRI Demat Account are as follows,

  • Completely filled account opening form signed by all the holders.
  • PIS permission letter
  • Photographs of all the holders with signatures across the photo.
  • PAN Card copy for all holders
  • Overseas address proof for all the holders
  • Canceled cheque of the linked NRE/NRO Bank account specified in the form
  • Photograph and signature of the nominee

All the above-mentioned documents must be verified by the local Indian embassy or any other competent authority that is approved by the bank or the stockbroker.

NRI Demat Account Charges

An NRI Demat account attracts charges like a resident demat account. This includes fees by the Central Depository and Depository Participant (Broker). There are also government taxes to be paid on the demat account. Some key NRI demat account charges are:

  • Account Opening Fee when the account is opened.
  • Annual Maintenance Charges annually for the maintenance of the demat account.
  • Debit Transaction Charges when NRI sells shares and the shares are withdrawn from the demat account. Some brokers charge a flat rate fee per transaction while other charges it in the percentage of the value of the transaction.

One should note that, NRI Demat Account transaction charges are taxed under GST (18%) and that the GST is applicable on all charges except stamp charges for power of attorney.

Best Demat Accounts for NRIs in India

NRI Demat Account ProviderOverall Rating
3Motilal Oswal7.5/10
4HDFC Securities6.8/10
5ICICI Direct 6.5/10
8Axis Bank 5.8/10
10Angel Broking 5/10

Zerodha the largest stock broker of India that offers discount brokerage services to investors and traders. Zerodha is well known for it’s excellent trading platform, lowest charges and flat brokerage rate in the industry.

Zerodha NRI Account consists of trading account and demat account and serves only those NRIs that have a PIS account with Axis Bank, HDFC bank or Yes Bank.


IIFL is one of the most trusted full-service brokers for opening an NRI demat account.

This stockbroker offers a wide range of trading and investment options which allows it’s NRI customers to diversify their portfolio. 

Furthermore, IIFL also offers an extensive range of trading platforms to its customers so that they can invest and trade using their own preferred platform. 

Motilal Oswal 

Established in the year 1987, Motilal Oswal is the oldest full-service broker of India. In the earlier years it had focused towards, institutional stockbroking, however recently it has made a shift towards retail stockbroking. 

 HDFC Securities

HDFC is one of the leading financial service providers in India that offers a range of products and services to Non-Resident Indians.

HDFC offers hassle-free online equity trading experience to its NRI customers through its NRI 3-in-1 account.

The HDFC NRI Demat Account combines banking, broking and demat account thus enables NRIs to invest in a wide range of securities such as Equity, FD, MF, etc.

ICICI Direct 

ICICI bank is a leading private bank in India with a presence in almost every part of India and major cities around the world.

ICICI offers a unique 3-in-1 account by integrating banking, broking and demat accounts. This online NRI investment account offers a wide range of investment options including Stocks, FTF, Derivatives (F&O Trading), Mutual Funds, and an IPO. In addition, ICICI also offer services related to PAN Card, Portfolio Investment Scheme (PIS), NRI Taxes, Stock Research and Tips.


State Bank of India, the largest bank of India facilitates it’s NRI customers to invest online in Equities, IPOs, Derivatives, and Mutual Funds through its 4-in-1 account that comprises of following accounts,

  • NRE Savings Bank account
  • NRE Portfolio Investment Scheme account
  • Demat Account
  • Trading Account

Although SBI offers 4-in-1 accounts which makes it convenient to make investment and trading, but the o.75% brokerage charges are very high as compared to most of the other brokers.


Kotak, a financial service provider offers online 3-in-1 NRI accounts that facilitate trading and investing in Indian stock market. This 3 in 1 account comprises of savings bank account, a trading account and demat account, which are interlinked so as to offer a seamless trading experience to its NRI customers.

Additionally, Kotak offers its customers free trading software that provides research reports and trading tips for beginner traders and investors.

 Axis Bank

Axis bank the third largest private sector bank in India, offers 4 in 1 NRI Investment Account which provides multiple investment options, for instance, equities, derivatives, IPOs, ETFs, mutual funds. It offers ease of transaction due to an integrated account. 


NRI Demat account is a key offering of Sharekhan, one of the oldest stockbrokers with presence across 600 cities around India and abroad.

Sharekhan has partnerships with Axis Bank, HDFC Bank and  IndusInd Bank for opening an NRI bank account and Sharekhan facilitate the opening of NRI Demat Account and NRI Trading Account. 

Going further, it also offers a dedicated relationship manager to all NRI customers in addition to the free online trading platform. Additionally, it also offers research reports and recommendations.

Angel Broking

Angel Broking is also one of the oldest brokerage houses of India with physical presence across the cities in India. This stockbroker also offers two types of NRI Account namely, NRI Trading and NRI demat account, which can be further classified as 

  • PIS Account (NRE or NRO) 
  • Non-PIS Account (NRE or NRO) 

So are you ready to open your NRI demat account and start investing and trading in the Indian stock market? If there are any further queries in your mind regarding NRI demat account do let us know in the comment section below and we will be glad to help you out. 

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