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Diesel deregulation credit positive: Moody's 21/10/2014

Diesel deregulation credit positive: Moody's
21/10/2014 17:11
Moody's Investors Service, which has a Baa3 stable rating on the country, today said the diesel price deregulation announced over the past weekend is "credit positive", reported PTI.
In a note issued from Singapore, its senior vice-president for sovereign risk group Atsi Sheth said, "The decision to fully deregulate diesel prices signals fiscal discipline on the part of the sovereign, which we view as credit positive.
"Diesel price deregulation will reduce the subsidy burden for the government, although fiscal savings are likely to be limited."
Last Saturday, the government linked the retail price of diesel by slashing prices up to Rs 3.77 a litre. Diesel price was cut after a gap of over five years.
She said the government decision to fully liberalise diesel prices and ease controls over natural gas prices, allowing the latter to increase by about 33 per cent, are credit positive.
This is because they allow the market to adjust to global commodity price trends and reduce the exposure of government finances to those trends, she said.
"Our stable outlook on the sovereign is based on our expectation of incremental credit positive policy changes in multiple areas over the coming months, and our assumption that the fuel subsidy reforms, which were introduced some years ago, will continue," Sheth said.
It can be noted that since September 2012, the government has implemented various reforms to the fuel subsidy programme, including allowing oil companies to increase diesel prices incrementally by 50 paise a month, withdrawing the subsidy on diesel sold in bulk, and limiting subsidised consumption of cooking gas.
Despite these steps, rising commodity prices actually led to a significant increase in the subsidy outlay, she said, adding in fact, the oil subsidy bill grew nearly six-fold over the past five years to Rs 85,500 crore in FY14, from Rs 15,000 crore in FY10. Total fuel subsidies accounted for less than 1 per cent of GDP and under 3 per cent of total government expenditures in FY14.

Govt committed to protect interest of workers: Narendra Singh Tomar 21/10/2014

Govt committed to protect interest of workers: Narendra Singh Tomar
21/10/2014 12:52
The Union Government is committed to protect the interests of the workers in the country. The Union Minister of Labour & Employment, Steel and Mines, Narendra Singh Tomar said this while chairing a discussion on Bill for participation of Workers in Management here today.
He said that to protect the interests of the workers, proper steps will continue to be taken in future.
Tomar said that conducive environment will be created simultaneously for working of industrial establishments to generate more jobs, as the government is committed to increase employment opportunities.
Tomar further added that this meeting was convened to build a consensus on finalising the content of the Workers’ participation in Management Bill, 1990. He said, “There had been attempts in the past to formulate schemes for workers’ participation in varying forms but the schemes were mainly to be implemented on a voluntary basis.”
He further added that adopting the participation of workers at apex level should remain voluntary for industry and not statutory.
The meeting aimed to get feedback from the management of leading CPSUs and apex Employer’s Organisations like CII, FICCI, CIE, ASSOCHAM and Trade Unions for arriving at a consensus on the issue of workers participation in management at the board/ apex level.
Present on the occasion were Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Employment, Smt. Gauri Kumar, senior officials of various central ministries, representatives of the CPSUs and central trade unions.

Modi reform push lifts India economic outlook 21/10/2014

Modi reform push lifts India economic outlook
21/10/2014 12:40
The Modi government means business as it steps up its big-bang reform agenda in a bid to bolster growth in Asia’s third biggest economy which has rebounded into the 5 per cent plus growth category.
Over the weekend, the cabinet freed diesel prices from government control, a move which may go a long way in reducing the oil subsidy burden and taming the long-standing problem of high fiscal deficit creating more policy easing room for the RBI.
The cabinet also raised the cost of natural gas from the current USD 4.20 per mmBtu to USD 5.61 per mmBtu, effective from November 1, with prices to be revised half-yearly. The revised gas pricing formula is expected to provide drilling and investment incentive to gas producers, while taking consumers’ interests into consideration.
In a bid to woo foreign investment, Modi raised the cap on FDI in sectors such as defence and railways while his ambitious ‘Make in India’ campaign seeks to make the country a leading global manufacturing base by easing norms of doing business in India by slashing red tape and overhauling redundant labour laws.
Modi has also decided to open up the state-run coal sector to private players, a major liberalisation move for the sector. The government is planning to auction all 204 coal blocks that are operating or non-operating, to end-users in power, cement and steel sector.

Diesel price de-regulation may prompt rate cut: Ind-Ra 21/10/2014

Diesel price de-regulation may prompt rate cut: Ind-Ra
21/10/2014 12:38
Leading rating agency India Ratings (Ind-Ra) reckons that the government decision to decontrol diesel prices may prompt a swifter policy easing move from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) while scrapping the diesel subsidy will lower the fiscal burden on Asia’s third biggest economy which grew at the fastest pace in more than two years in Q1 FY 2014-15.
The cabinet over the weekend decided to deregulate the prices of diesel; India’s most consumed fuel, which resulted in an Rs 3.37 per litre cut in the retail rate of diesel. .
Allowing prices of diesel to move as per market rates may help bring down the exchequer’s oil subsidy burden by Rs 15,000 crore, India Ratings reckons.
Further, a cut in diesel prices may help lower inflation, leaving more room for the RBI to cut interest rates.
“The union government’s decision to deregulate diesel prices will significantly improve the country’s finances as the oil subsidy will come down by INR150bn. Also, the cut in diesel prices by INR3.56/litre will go a long way in fighting inflation, which is trending downwards. This will create more space for the Reserve Bank of India to ease its policy stance and cut policy rate sooner than hitherto believed”, the rating agency said.

Defence sector norms eased by Govt 21/10/2014

Defence sector norms eased by Govt
21/10/2014 12:37
In a bid to boost investments in the country’s defence sector, the Modi government on Monday eased licensing norms by giving the go-ahead to private players in the sector to sell equipment to state-run firms without prior approval of the defence ministry.
“The licencee shall be allowed to sell defence items to government entities under the control of ministry of home affairs, state governments, PSUs and other valid defence licensed companies without prior approval of the department of defence production," a commerce and industry ministry statement said.
However, the licensee will still need to take permission from the department of defence production (DoDP) in case the sale of the defence equipment is to be made to any other entity.
“However, for sale of the item to any other entity, the licensee shall take prior permission from DoDP”, the statement added.
Further, in a bid to prompt more companies to enter the defence sector; the DoDP also eased the norms on annual capacity for defence items for industrial licences. Licensees will be required to submit half yearly production returns to DoDP and the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP).
The FDI cap in the sector was recently raised to 49 per cent from 26 per cent.

RBI releases minutes of meeting for greater transparency 21/10/2014

RBI releases minutes of meeting for greater transparency
21/10/2014 10:33
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has released the minutes of the meeting of the sub-committee on Financial Stability and Development Council (SC-FSDC) held in August, for the first time, in an attempt to bring in greater transparency, said the media report. The abridged version of the detailed minutes of the FSDC and SC-FSDC meetings will be published with a lag of about four weeks, the central bank said in a release. Officials who attended the meeting included the central bank governor, deputy governors, executive director, officials from the finance ministry and other stock and insurance sector regulators, among others. The committee discussed emerging risks to the economy from a potential rise in oil prices due to geopolitical events and a likely tightening of interest rates by the United States, the minutes said. The sub-committee took note of the steps taken by the RBI to deepen the currency futures market by eliminating unnecessary restrictions and also decided to move with caution on further steps in view of the interest rate scenario across the globe.

FTAs not hurting domestic manufacturing: Commerce Ministry 21/10/2014

FTAs not hurting domestic manufacturing: Commerce Ministry
21/10/2014 01:24
Brushing aside concerns of Indian industry over free trade agreements (FTAs), senior commerce ministry officials said it has not led to any spurt in imports or export of raw materials, reported PTI. A Commerce Ministry's study and analysis on impact of FTAs have found that "the imports have not increased to any level that would create concerns and we have not become suppliers of raw materials. This is good part," the officials said. However, officials did not provide any concrete data to substantiate their claims on the impact of FTAs on domestic manufacturing. Imports of intermediate goods have increased which means that India is becoming part of the regional value chain of South Asia, they said adding Indian exporters and industry are not able to exploit these pacts fully. "The use of these agreements by our exporters are perhaps a matter of concern. But we are making lot of efforts to disseminate informations, " the officials said. The ministry has drawn up a strategy for the coming six months to accelerate and strengthen outreach programmes which would include workshops. "We will also try to go down to industrial clusters where potential exporters can understand what are the benefits they have of using the preferential tariff under the FTAs. We want to them about rules of origin, sanitary and phyto-sanitary moves, technical barriers to trade," they said. The ministry is also in the process of developing a comprehensive portal about FTAs. "It will tell about different product regime. It will serve the purpose of promoting FTAs and helping exporters to know about tariff and non-tariff and preferential tariff regime in the partner country. That portal is for about 30 countries who are our major trade partners, including FTA partners," they added. India has so far entered into FTAs with Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Malaysia, Asean and South Asia. Indian industry and exporters have raised serious concerns about these pacts saying that they are benefiting partner countries more and impacting domestic manufacturing. Citing few figures, the officials said that out of India's total overall inbound shipments, imports from ASEAN, Singapore, S Korea and Japan at preferential duty rates stood at 14.5 percent, 10.8 percent, 21.8 percent and 22.4 percent respectively. "This clearly indicates that the preferential imports under FTAs have not contributed to the increase in trade deficits with some countries," they said adding it was difficult to collect data on exports as it have to shared by the FTA partner country. The Commerce Ministry officials also said that India is losing its price competitiveness in the global market but not because of free trade agreements. "We did a study about global competitiveness of Indian manufacturing. We found that we are losing competitiveness due to factors such as infrastructural bottlenecks, deficiencies in customs procedures and trade logistics, inadequate communication infrastructure and lack of uniform system of indirect taxes," they said. India is losing its price competitiveness in some of its traditional strengths like textiles, clothing, leather, automotive components and engineering machinery. Further allaying concerns of Indian industry, they said that imports of consumer goods too have not increased at higher rates due to these FTAs. "It has remain stagnant. We have certainly not moved down in the value chain in our exports also. We have also not become a market where consumer goods have dumped under preferential tariff so that could have been a worry but that has not happened," they added. "One moderating feature is that we have not been able to use these FTAs as they could have been. They are not as widely used as they could be," the officials said. On complains of the automobile industry on spurt in imports of auto components such as gear boxes, they said that "they are nothing alarming. Auto percentage of imports under different free trade agreements are very low". About increase in imports of electronic goods, they said that it was because of the Information Technology Agreement (ITA) of the WTO and not because of trade pacts. India's rationale for entering into FTAs was the diversification and expansion of exports to the partners and region as well ass access to raw materials, intermediate products and capital goods for stimulating value added domestic manufacturing, they said. "FTAs have adequate safeguard mechanisms to tackle the adverse effect of imports on the domestic industry and take corrective action against import surges," they said.

Centre closer to finding a solution on GST: Nirmala Sitharaman 21/10/2014

Centre closer to finding a solution on GST: Nirmala Sitharaman
21/10/2014 01:08
The Centre is closer to finding a solution to approve a legislative scheme, which enables the introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST), Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman said as per the PTI report. “Several meetings have been held with representatives from states and all would think we are closer to a solution on the GST,” Ms. Sitharaman told reporters on the sidelines of an interaction with stakeholders in coffee industry in Bangalore. The Finance Ministers of states have been pressing for lowering the threshold limit to Rs 10 lakh for imposing GST on entities and asked the Centre to specify GST compensation structure for five years in the Constitutional Amendment Bill. The states also have been demanding legal powers, and not only administrative powers, to collect tax from businesses with an annual turnover of up to Rs 1.5 crore. “On the GST, the Finance Minister (Arun Jaitley) has very clearly indicated that the Constitutional amendment will be brought in the winter session,” she said. The UPA Government in 2011 introduced a Constitution Amendment Bill in the Lok Sabha to pave the way for the GST regime which aims at subsuming most of the indirect taxes at the central as well as the state levels. On deregulation of diesel prices announced on Saturday, she said, “We are towards reform; want to deregulate; want to make it reasonable, and when further prices come down everybody will benefit given the market considerations. So, our inclination is to deregulate.” In much-awaited reform, government on October 18 had deregulated diesel prices for the first time in over five years - a move that resulted in a price cut of Rs 3.37 a litre. Asked if the gas price hike to $5.61 per mmBtu on heat value would not come as a deterrent for foreign companies looking upstream operations, Ms. Sitharaman said the central government has come up with an alternative from the point of view of consumers and investors. “The government has come up with an alternative, keeping the price reasonable - reasonable from the point of view of the consumer, and reasonable from the point of view of attracting investment. Otherwise, nobody wants to come and invest,” she said.

Govt forms panel to frame bankruptcy code 21/10/2014

Govt forms panel to frame bankruptcy code
21/10/2014 00:56
The government has set up a committee to frame bankruptcy law to enable entrepreneurs to close down unviable businesses, reported PTI. The committee under T K Vishwanathan, former Law Secretary, will study the corporate bankruptcy legal framework in India and submit a report by February next year, Finance Ministry said in a statement. Finance Minster Arun Jaitley in 2014-15 Budget had announced that an entrepreneur friendly legal bankruptcy framework would be developed for SMEs to enable easy exit. The Committee will examine the whole gamut of issues relating to bankruptcy, including the following specific areas like why bankruptcy matters and early detection and resolution of financial distress. It would also look into protection of interest of stakeholders and would study the rescue mechanism and suggest ways of improving it, besides liquidation procedure for smaller companies. In its meeting in August, the sub-committee of the Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC) had called for taking early steps by financial sector regulators for a vibrant, deep and liquid corporate bond market: "A group headed by a former Law Secretary would examine all the existing laws and a single Bankruptcy Code would be put in place as an effective Bankruptcy Code is critical in developing a sound corporate bond market," an RBI statement said

"Private cos will be allowed commercial coal mining soon" 21/10/2014

"Private cos will be allowed commercial coal mining soon"
21/10/2014 17:24
A day after deciding to e-auction coal mines cancelled by Supreme Court to captive users, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said commercial mining of coal will soon be opened for private sector firms, reported PTI.
"They (private companies) are already there for end use (captive mining)... I can't bind myself by a timeline, but there would be some players, hopefully very soon they should be there in the field," he said, when asked when the private sector would be allowed to enter the coal mining without end-use restrictions.
Currently, only Coal India, the world's largest coal miner, and its smaller sister PSU Singareni Collieries besides mining agencies of state government are allowed commercial coal mining.
In 1993, private sector participation in mining of coal for captive use by industries like steel, cement and power producers was allowed.
In an interview to NDTV, Jaitley said the ordinance the government is issuing to allocate the coal mines cancelled by Supreme Court to state-owned power generator NTPC and state electricity boards as well as e-auction, has an enabling clause to allow private sector in commercial mining later.
"In the first round we have given it to the actual users and this we intend completing in 3-4 months. After this is done, the government can immediately thereafter, so sometime thereafter, start using that enabling power which has been given under the enabling Act. Therefore it is a much needed step forward," he said.
He was asked by when the private players will be allowed in coal mining.
The Finance Minister, however, categorically stated that the nature and structure of Coal India Ltd, the world's largest miner, will not be changed and there will be no privatisation of the company.
"Privatisation would involve if you are privatising Coal India. That's not what we are doing. Coal India remains Coal India. It will remain the principal player, but in competition you can also have some private players coming in. They will be much smaller private player because nobody can match the size of Coal India. But you will have several smaller players," he said.
Private firms are being allowed in to increase coal output so that power generation can be increased.
On diesel regulation, Jaitley said his government has implemented the decision which was taken by the UPA.
"All we have done now is implement the decision which the UPA has taken and fortunately for us the market price is low.
"The diesel deregulation will be like the petrol deregulation, except that I understand that there is some head space in terms of money which the oil companies have reserved for themselves so there capacity to absorb some of it is there. If prices rise beyond that absorption capacity the price will go up.

Sebi to empanel administrators to look after refund process 21/10/2014

Sebi to empanel administrators to look after refund process
21/10/2014 17:16
To help it refund money to those duped by fraudsters, regulator Sebi has decided to appoint administrators to supervise the entire refund-payment process including identification of eligible investors and payment of their dues, reported PTI.
This follows an earlier decision by Sebi to empanel third-party agencies to work as receivers for management and sale of assets attached through its regulatory orders for recovery of penalties and investors' money from defaulters.
Sebi was given greater powers by the government earlier this year to crack down on fraudsters and defaulters, while it can now also order refund of monies and disgorgement of ill gotten profits from various entities, which may be distributed to the affected investors.
In this regard, Sebi has now invited applications from entities willing to function as administrators, which can include retired civil servants, retired officers of banks, financial institutions and financial sector regulators.
The upper age limit would be 70 years, while the person would need to have "no criminal/disciplinary proceedings pending against him/her".
"The administrator would be responsible for supervising the process of distribution of the monies," the market regulator said in a notice.
Among others, the administrator would have to identify the target investors in accordance with the directions issued by Sebi as well as invite applications from the investors for distribution of the amounts.
Besides, they would have to scrutinise the applications received based on the KYC (Know Your Client) documents and weeding out the invalid/multiple such applications.
They would also have to prepare a list of eligible applicants with address, bank account details for refunding the money as well as distribute the money as per the terms and conditions specified by the market regulator.
In addition, they would also have to maintain records of accounts of all transactions.
The administrator will be provided assistance of a Sebi registered intermediary such as merchant bankers, RTI/STA on case to case basis and the expenditure will be borne by the market regulator out of the funds realised for distribution.
Sebi said the remuneration to the administrator would be either on lump sum basis or based on size of investors, quantum of work involved, on case to case basis at the discretion of the market regulator.
The interested candidates can apply by November 20.

'Lack of clarity on premium for new deepsea gas finds' 21/10/2014

'Lack of clarity on premium for new deepsea gas finds'
21/10/2014 01:31
The 46 per cent rise in natural gas prices will help improve investor sentiment but lack of clarity on the premium government will pay for new discoveries in deepsea is a dampener, says a report as per the PTI. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had on Saturday approved a 46 per cent hike in natural gas prices to USD 5.61 per million British thermal unit (on gross calorific value basis) to spur investments in now stagnant upstream oil and gas exploration. The new formula will comes into effect from November 1 and rates will be revised every half year, the next revision being on April 1. "The price hike is lower than the demand of the incumbents who wanted a steeper hike in gas prices," ICRA said in a report. Government will provide a premium on gas price for all future discoveries in ultra deepwater, deepwater and high-pressure-high-temperature offshore blocks, the quantum of which is to be determined on a case to case basis. "With this price announcement, ICRA expects the investor sentiments in the domestic upstream sector to improve; nonetheless the lack of clarity on the quantum of price premium for gas produced from complex offshore blocks is a dampener, especially considering that most of the domestic prospects fall in this category," it said. The increase in gas prices is expected to improve the viability of a modest proportion of gas resources though material upside to domestic gas production is likely only after 4-5 years due to approval issues and long gestation period for development of offshore fields. On the impact on end consumers, ICRA said the impact on the fertilizer sector is expected to be marginally negative as the higher gas price would increase the subsidy. "The impact on the Power sector is expected to be negative on account of gas becoming less competitive as against domestic coal," it said. Profitability of companies operating on either merchant route or on fixed tariff under short term power purchase agreements (PPAs) would be adversely impacted. On the impact of price rise on CNG and piped cooking gas (PNG), ICRA said while the CNG segment has the ability to absorb the price increase, the PNG domestic segment's competitiveness is set to reduce further against the heavily subsidised LPG (domestic). "Notwithstanding the negative impact on fertilisers, power and CGD sectors, they will be benefited through increased availability of gas, if the supply situation improves as anticipated, as they would continue to enjoy high priority for gas allocation," the report added.

'Electronics sector to get Rs 5,000 cr investments in 2-3 yrs' 21/10/2014

'Electronics sector to get Rs 5,000 cr investments in 2-3 yrs'
21/10/2014 01:10
Burgeoning demand for electronic products in India is expected to attract investment worth about Rs 5,000 crore in the sector over the next 2-3 years, industry body India Electronics and Semiconductor Association (IESA) said as per the PTI report. The boom in sales of electronic goods like mobile phones, tablets and cameras has spurred interest from foreign firms, who are now looking at setting up a manufacturing base to cater to the world's second most populous market. "The Electronic System and Design Manufacturing (ESDM) sector is expected to attract investment proposals of over Rs 10,000 crore in the next two-three years under M-SIPS and we expect about Rs 5,000 crore to be approved," IESA Chairman Ashok Chandak said as per the report. He added that his association is playing a significant role in establishing strong relations with ESDM companies of many countries through signing MoUs with the electronics trade bodies. "IESA has already signed MoU with Taipei Computer Association (TCA) of Taiwan and that with the India Business Support Center (IBSC) of Japan is to be signed soon. Talks have been initiated talks with Singapore, USA and Israel counterparts," Chandak said. To explore opportunities, the Indian Industry and Department of Electronics and IT (DeitY) delegation to Japan is expected to happen during the last week of October and IESA led visit to Taiwan is scheduled in December, he added. IESA has also been instrumental in making M-SIPs, a DeitY initiative, attract domestic and global investments into the ESDM space. Over 40 per cent of the proposals approved/advanced stage of approval under M-SIPs are from IESA member companies, Chandak said adding IESA is also expected to garner more than Rs 10,000 crore investment proposals in the near future. Till August 22, the government had received 40 applications involving investment of nearly Rs 14,624 crore under MSIPS. Out of this, 16 projects involving investment of Rs 2,230 crore have been approved. IESA today also announced an initiatives 'Speed Up' to further strengthen Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Make in India' initiative. "Investment promotion initiative of IESA will support the government's vision to position India as a manufacturing destination," Chandak said. While it is evident that the bigger companies will make entries into the Indian manufacturing space, it is the small and medium sized companies from Japan, Taiwan, Singapore and other countries that has potential to join hands with Indian counterparts to make a broader impact, he added. "We have extended our support to state governments and DeitY with an intent to get the infrastructure ready for 'Make in India'," IESA President M N Vidyashankar said

Gas pricing will ensure profit, not windfall profit: Jaitley 21/10/2014

Gas pricing will ensure profit, not windfall profit: Jaitley
21/10/2014 00:47
Days after approving lower than demanded gas price increase, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said the USD 5.61 per mmBtu rate will ensure explorers make profit but not windfall gain, reported PTI. The increase in rate, approved the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on Saturday, balances interests of oil and gas explorers and consumers, he said. "It is a rational decision... Even at this (USD 5.61) price, the explorers are going to make profit. They won't have a windfall profit. At the same time, the burden of consumers will be minimal," he said. Jaitley said the CCEA approved price of USD 5.61 per million British thermal unit as against USD 8.4 per mmBtu approved by the previous UPA government and higher rates demanded by private firms like Reliance Industries and BP, balances incentives for investment and consumer interest. "We balanced the decision where there is incentive for investment in the sector and at the same time the consumer is not overburdened," he told ET Now. "With this decision, the explorers may not make a windfall profit, they will make a profit." Jaitley added that he was not against business. "Well it is a balancing act. I am not against business, or against big business. I don't consider profit a bad word. I think it is windfall profit that is a bad word. Therefore, this (gas price hike) ensures profit rather than windfall profit, at the same time this also factors into interest the aam aadmi." The NDA government after coming to power twice deferred a decision on gas price hike, which was originally due on April 1, to hold wider consultations. A gas price increase will result in rise in cost of fertiliser production and hike electricity tariff as also CNG price. Jaitley said the gas price decision was "professionally taken." A committee of secretaries excluded the irrelevant factors in the Rangarajan formula, which was approved by the previous UPA government, and included the relevant.

Govt moves to issue Ordinance for e-auction of coal mines 21/10/2014

Govt moves to issue Ordinance for e-auction of coal mines
21/10/2014 00:45
In a major move towards energy sector reforms, the Cabinet recommended promulgation of an Ordinance to facilitate e-auction of coal blocks for private companies for captive use and allot mines directly to state and central PSUs, reported PTI. The move comes against the backdrop of the Supreme Court last month quashing allocation of 214 coal blocks to various companies since 1993. "The Cabinet has recommended promulgation of an Ordinance to the President in order to resolve the pending issues particularly the situation arising out of the Supreme Court judgement quashing the allocation of the coal blocks," Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said briefing the media after the meeting. State sector requirements including those of the Central and state governments would be met and coal mines would be allocated to PSUs like NTPC or state electricity boards. "As far as the private sector is concerned, the actual users of coal in the cement, steel and power sectors who apply for a certain number of coal mines will be put in the pool and there would be an e-auction. A sufficient and adequate number of mines would be put so that actual users go back with the mines," he said. Jaitley said the auction process would be "transparent" and completed in "three to four months" with proceeds going entirely to the state governments where the mines are located. "The entire mess that the UPA had left behind from 2005 onwards over the next four months would be cleaned up," he said, adding coal worth USD 20 billion which was being imported annually would be domestically substituted through this measure. The biggest beneficiaries would be the eastern states like Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal and Chhattisgarh. States like Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh would also benefit. "This will financially empower particularly the eastern states (which have most of the coal mines) and lakhs of labourers would get employment while bank capital held up with the allottee companies would be fruitfully utilised," the Finance Minister said. Jaitley vehemently denied a suggestion whether the process could be termed as "de-nationalisation" of the coal sector saying, "The original Nationalisation Act remains and will remain and Coal India Ltd will be fully protected.

Pre Session- Sensex seen opening higher on Asia trend 21/10/2014

Pre Session- Sensex seen opening higher on Asia trend
21/10/2014 08:25
The key domestic benchmarks are likely to open higher today tracking a mostly positive trend in fellow Asian markets and a positive closing at Wall Street overnight. Asian stocks rose as China’s Q3 GDP data beat estimates. The world’s second biggest economy expanded 7.3 per cent in July-September 2014, year on year, compared to analysts’ estimates of 7.2 per cent growth. However, the pace of growth was the slowest since Q1 2009. China’s Shanghai Composite was trading with slim gains, Hang Seng rose while Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell as a stronger yen dimmed the appeal of exporter stocks. Back home, sentiment may remain bullish after BJP’s victory in the assembly elections while oil and gas reforms amid diesel price deregulation will continue to support Dalal Street. The stocks of Cairn India, HDFC Bank and JSW Steel will be in focus today as they unveil their Q2 earnings numbers today.

Top traded Volumes on NSE Nifty – DLF Ltd. 26767160.00, Jindal Steel & Power Ltd. 23687843.00, Oil And Natural Gas Corporation Ltd. 15253269.00, Hindalco Industries Ltd. 10451491.00 and Axis Bank Ltd. 6484171.00.




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