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Foreign portfolio investment (FPI) is a common way to invest in overseas economies. It includes securities and financial assets held by investors in another country. 
Securities (in FPI) include stocks or American Depositary Receipts (ADRs) of companies in nations other than the investor's nation. It also includes bonds or other debt issued by these companies or foreign governments, mutual funds, or exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that invest in assets abroad or overseas.
On a macro-level, foreign portfolio investment is part of a country’s capital account and shown on its balance of payments (BOP). BOP calculates the amount of money flowing from one country to other countries over a financial year.
FPI is relatively liquid depending on market volatility. 
Who invests through FPI?
Individual investors interested in opportunities outside their own country invest via FPI.  It does not give investors direct ownership of a company's assets.
What is surcharge?
Surcharge is an additional charge or tax.
What is FPI surcharge?
In 2019, the government of India proposed an increase in the tax surcharge on such super-rich tax payers who earn more than Rs 2 crore a year. While doing so, government included all the individuals and association of persons (AOPs) under the purview of the increased surcharge. Hence, they were to be subjected to the higher tax surcharge if they earned over Rs 2 crore of income a year. The move spooked investors as the surcharge would have impacted 40 per cent of the FPIs.
However, on August 23, 2019, giving in to the demands of overseas investors, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman removed enhanced surcharge on FPIs.