OPINION, P6 MARKETS, P10 AK PADHEE & PK JOSHI For agri-marketing reforms to work, Centre must incentivise states INTERNATIONAL, P8 EDITORIAL AHEAD OF RETIREMENT BEATING MICROSOFT Ban Chinese vendors from BSNL's 4G tender, but don't delay it after having cancelled earlier HDFC Bank’s Puri gets Euromoney’s lifetime achievement award ByteDance picks Oracle as partner to try to save TikTok US NEW DELHI, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2020 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM READ TO LEAD VOL. XLVI NO. 169, 26 PAGES, `6.00 (PATNA `6.00, RAIPUR `7.00) P U B L I S H E D F R O M : A H M E D A B A D , B E N G A L U R U , C H A N D I G A R H , C H E N N A I , H Y D E R A B A D , K O C H I , K O L K ATA , L U C K N O W, M U M B A I , N E W D E L H I , P U N E SENSEX: 38756.63 ▼ 97.92 NIFTY: 11,440.05 ▼ 24.40 NIKKEI 225: 23,559.30 ▲ 152.81 HANG SENG: 24,640.28 ▲ 136.97 `/$: 73.49 ▲ 0.05 `/€: 87.18 ▼ 0.11 BRENT: $39.59 ▼ $0.24 GOLD: `51,260 ▼ `90 This is despite the 24.6-fold hike in ICU beds the health minister spoke of in Parliament AROUND 30 MPs,includingBJP’sMeenakshiLekhi and Pravesh Verma, and over 50 employees of Parliament have tested positive for Covid-19 so far, sources said on Monday, reportsPTI.Manyofthem tested positive after undergoing compulsory tests on Parliament premises before the start of the monsoon session. ISHAAN GERA New Delhi, September 14 THE SURGE IN Covid-19 infections, from 2.5 million a month ago to 4.9 million on September14,has meant that, once again, several cities in the country could be running short of critical health infrastructure and need to create some on a war footing. In a suo-motu statement in Parliament on Monday, Union health minister Harsh Vardhan said the number of dedicated isolation beds in the country had increased 36.3 times since March 2020 while the number of dedicated ICU beds had increased 24.6 times. Continued on Page 2 Covid capacity crunch GST: States willing (some cities have reached breaking point, others could soon) to borrow want % of hospital % of ICU % of ventilators Total Private beds occupied beds occupied occupied process to start STATES that have opted for exercising the borrowing options suggested by the Centre to make good their GST revenue shortfall want the process to start without having to wait for the others, reports Sumit Jha in New Delhi. Delhi 45.9 Mumbai 66.2 62.9 74.6 72.5 93.8 60.2 80.9 94.1 Bengaluru 61.7 60.3 58.3 59.5 65.5 62.4 85.5 89.1 97.8 99.6 100 100 Pune Chennai 71.7 55.5 49.4 ● GOING GREEN QuickPicks BP says the Five bidders in fray for DHFL; lenders likely to extend bid date era of oil LENDERS TO Dewan Housing Finance Corporation (DHFL) are voting to extend the deadline for submission of bids till October 17, even as five "serious" bidders are conducting due diligence, reports Ankur Mishra in Mumbai. The voting by lenders will be completed on Tuesday. The deadline for submission of bids is set to expire on September 16. The lenders are looking to extend deadline due to a modification in request for resolution plan (RFRP) document for applicants. PAGE 10 Covid-19 insurance claims cross `3,000 cr; highest from Maha INSURERS HAVE received around 2. 07 lakh claims from Covid-19 patients for over `3,300 crore and have settled over 1.30 lakh claims amounting to `1,260 crore as on September 10, reports fe Bureau in Mumbai. At 84,400, claims from Maharashtra are the highest from any state and the amount involved is `1,076 crore. Senior officials in the industry say that apart from Mumbai, places like Pune and Thane also continue to see high claims. Tamil Nadu and Karnataka have reported around 24,155 and 17,800 claims. PAGE 11 Pandemic may be major tail risk event for MFIs: RBI paper COVID-19 COULD be the biggest tail risk event in a long time for the microfinance industry, RBI said in a paper, published as part of its September bulletin, reports fe Bureau in Mumbai. At the same time, the pandemic and its impact may also incentivise digitisation in the industry, it added. “Owing to the disruptions in supply chain and business operations, the likelihood of loss of livelihoods and consequent drop in household incomes is high. NBFC-MFIs, being specialised institutions extending collateral free loans to low-income groups, are particularly exposed to credit risks...” it said. PAGE 10 FE BUREAU New Delhi, September 14 Around 30 MPs test positive for Covid demand growth is over Prime Minister Narendra Modi, defence minister Rajnath Singh, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman and others during the opening day of Parliament's Monsoon Session on Monday SUPPLEMENTARY DEMAND Nod sought for extra spending of `2.36L cr `1,66,984 cr Despite large revenue shortfall, govt signals FY21 Budget size may rise FE BUREAU New Delhi, September 14 AMIDACRASHintaxcollection and calls for more fiscal stimulus to soften the Covid-19 blow andspurgrowth,financeminister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday sought Parliament’s approval for an additional spendingof`2,35,852.87crore during the current fiscal.This implies the government may look at expanding the budget size for the year from the estimated`30.4lakhcrore,though apreciseestimateoftheexpansionwill be clearonlylater. Continued on Page 2 Net cash outgo `46,602 cr Post-devolution revenue deficit grant and grants-in-aid to states Enhanced spending on MGNREGS `20,000 cr Capital infusion into state-run banks `7,993 cr Extra spending to contain Covid-19 and procure machinery at hospitals, etc This first batch of supplementary demand includes `20,000 crore to shore up the capital base of state-run banks (infusion was not part of the FY21 Budget) to facilitate further lending and `40,000 `40,000 cr `10,000 cr For subsidy under Food Security Act crore towards enhanced expenditure under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS). Continued on Page 14 Agri marketing reforms: 3 Bills tabled Bank recap bonds of `20,000 crore Banking regulation Bill introduced by FM THE CENTRE on Monday introduced three Bills in Parliament that seek to replace the recent Ordinances to allow barrier-free inter-state trading of farm goods and contract farming. ■ Page 3 RAKTEEM KATAKEY September 14 BP PLC SAID the relentless growth of oil demand is over, becoming the first supermajor to call the end of an era many thought would last another decade or more. Oil consumption may never return to levels seen before the coronavirus crisis tookhold,BPsaidinareporton Monday. Even its most bullish scenario sees demand no better than “broadly flat” for the next two decades as the energy transition shifts the world away from fossil fuels. BP is making a profound break from orthodoxy. From the bosses of corporate energy giants to ministers from OPEC states, senior figures from the industry have insisted that oil consumption will see decades of growth. Time and again, they have described it as the only commodity that can satisfy the demands of an increasing global population and expanding middle class. KEY PROPOSALS FOR MEETING expenditure towardsrecapitalisationofpublic-sectorbanks (PSBs) through theissueofgovernmentsecurities, the government sought Parliament’s authorisation for `20,000crore. FINANCE MINISTER Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday introducedaBillthatseekstoenable RBI to make a scheme to restructure a stressed bank without imposing a moratorium on depositwithdrawal. ■ Page 2 ● FREE FLOWING OTT platforms don’t need regulation: Trai FE BUREAU New Delhi, September 14 INAHUGE reliefforover-thetop (OTT) players such as Facebook, WhatsApp, Google, Viber, Telegram,etc,the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) hasruledoutbringingthem under any form of regulatory framework, stating that market forces should be allowed to respond to the situation. In its recommendations submittedtothedepartmentof telecommunication (DoT) on Monday, the regulator also rejected the need for any regulatory interventions in respect of issues related with privacy and security of OTT services at the moment, adding that market developmentsneedtobemonitored and if required an intervention can be made at an appropriate time. DREAM SPORTS, THAT owns Dream11, has raised a fresh $225 million in funding that includesbothprimaryandsecondary investments. The round was led by Tiger Global Management, TPG Tech Adjacencies (TTAD), ChrysCapital andFootpathVentures,andthe firm is now understood to be valued at close to $2.5 billion. The capital will come in handy to sponsor the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League(IPL)forwhichDream11 had a bid of `222 crore. The bulk of the transaction comprises secondary investments, sources said. “The increaseinthesecondarycomponent appears to be due to Tencent offloading shares amidtherisinganti-Chinanarrative in India. Tencent had reportedly invested $100 million into the company in late INDIAIS proposing to drop a condition that the winning bidder for Air India will have to take on $3.3 billion of aircraft debt, people with knowledge of the matter AZIM PREMJI country’s promising startups and ecommerce platforms, and foreigner investors based in India. They form part of the 10,000 Indian individuals and entities targeted in the database and comes when Chinese investment in Indian startups surged by over 10 times ABHAY KARANDIKAR Valuation jumps to $2.5 billion from a little over $1 billion in 2019 Dream11 has more than 80 million registered users Online gamers in India grew 31% in 2019 to 365 million, to hit 440 million by 2022 2018, and while it may not be completely exiting, it appears to be reducing its stake to single-digit values,”Jayraj Patel, analyst at paper.vc,said. Continued on Page 2 said, as the government struggles to sell the lossmakingcarrierkeptafloatby taxpayer-funded bailouts, reports Bloomberg. ■ Page 4 Personal pension accounts on the cards SURYA SARATHI RAY New Delhi, September 14 THE GOVERNMENT HAS revivedaproposaltoamendthe Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS),1995,tobringaboutakey change: all new entrants into theschemewillhaveindividual, defined-contribution-based pension accounts, in lieu of claim to a common, grossly inadequateandricketyEPSpool as at present. The plan requires roughlya third of the total Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) contribution on behalf of new employees with a monthly salary above `15,000, to go to their personal pension accounts,rather than the EPF. The move is in sync with thegovernment’sstatedpolicy to create a ‘pensioned society’, with meaningful social security, even as it seeks to address the sticky issue of the indirect drain on the exchequer owing to the extant EPF scheme. Continued on Page 2 Rebound FE BUREAU Business activity picks up pace Business resumption has been defying the pandemic, picking up through August and accelerating further in mid-September. Nomura economists remain cautious on its sustainability, as a rising number of cases could lead to localised lockdowns or a more cautious consumer. Nomura India Business Resumption Index 100 90 80 70 60 ` ` 50 40 Feb 2 Mar 29 May 24 Continued on Page 17 NEWECONOMYGURUS BINNY BANSAL Mix ofprimary and secondary deals ● EPS OVERHAUL Tech start-ups, apps under China watch FROM AN ENGINEERING student interning with the Indian Railways to the chief investment officer at the venture capital company set up by Azim Premji, the Overseas Key Individual DataBase (OKIDB), built by Chinese firm Zhenhua Data, has at least 1,400 entries covering the entire spectrum of India’s new economy, an investigation by The Indian Express has revealed. Those targeted include venture capitalists,angel investors,founders and chief technology officers of the $225 million AI sale: Debt condition may be dropped EXPRESS INVESTIGATION - PART 2 KAUNAIN SHERIFF M & JAY MAZOOMDAAR New Delhi, September 14 Transactionsworth 81.6 THE GOVERNMENT on Monday banned the export of all varieties of onions with immediate effect, a move aimed at increasing availability and checking price of the commodity in the domestic market, reports PTI. "The export of all varieties of onions... is prohibited with immediate effect," the DGFT said. Dream11 scores value of $2.5 bn Cities running out of hospital space 70 Govt bans export of onions with immediate effect FUNDRAISE 56.9 RETAIL INFLATION eased only marginally to 6.69% year-onyear in August, against a revised 6.73% in July, as lockdown-related supply disruptions outweighed any purported Covid-induced demand compression in the economy, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. Wholesale price inflation, meanwhile, touched 0.16% in August. COVID-19 68.1 IN THE NEWS CPI inflation a tad lower; WPI in positive territory DEEPAK PHATAK from $ 381 million in 2016 to $4.6 billion in 2019. However, the ongoing border standoff has caused uncertainties about the future of this investment boom. Continued on Page 14 New Delhi July 19 Sept 13 Source: Google, Apple, CMIE, Bloomberg and Nomura Global Economics
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