OPINION, P6 COMPANIES, P4 EDITORIAL India doesn’t need to rush on announcing a net-zero target AT THE HELM CORPORATE GOVERNANCE Govt must get public procurement policy right, L1 focus must give way to considerations of quality KUMAR V PRATAP MARKETS, P9 Nisaba Godrej to continue as GCPL executive chairperson Sebi makes dividend distribution policy must for top 1,000 listed cos KOLKATA, WEDNESDAY, MAY 12, 2021 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM VOL. 30 NO. 163, 20 PAGES, `6.00 (NORTH EAST STATES & ANDAMAN `10.00) 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 READ TO LEAD SENSEX: 49,161.81 ▼ 340.60 NIFTY: 14,850.75 ▼ 91.60 NIKKEI 225: 28,608.59 ▼ 909.75 HANG SENG: 28,013.81 ▼ 581.85 `/$: 73.34 ▲ 0.01 `/€: 89.23 < > 0.00 BRENT: $67.54 ▼ $0.78 GOLD FUTURE: `47,791 ▼ `160 — IN THE NEWS Cairn says taking action to access award against India UK'S CAIRN ENERGY on Tuesday said it is taking all necessary actions to access the $1.7 billion it was awarded by an international arbitration tribunal after overturning a retroactive tax demand slapped by India, reports PTI. Jaypee insolvency: Revised bids by NBCC, Suraksha NBCC AND THE SPV led by Suraksha Realty on Monday submitted revised bids to acquire the bankrupt Jaypee Infratech, reports Rishi Ranjan Kala in New Delhi. SBI’s Padmakumar M Nair to be CEO of bad bank PADMAKUMAR M NAIR, chief general manager of Stressed Assets Resolution Group at SBI, will head NARCL, the proposed bad bank, sources said, reports PTI. Special Feature Insurance Claims COVID TRACKER Globally-approved testing kits allowed EXPRESS PHOTO: DEEPAK JOSHI Govt liberalises import of kits into the country to ramp up testing FACED WITH THE upsurge in Covid-19 cases in the second wave and to meet the urgent need to ramp up testing, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Tuesday liberalised import of testing kitsintothecountry.Real-time RT-PCRandRATtestsapproved by global agencies have been exempted from validation in India. The Drugs Controller General of India will accord marketing permission in India on the basis of their existing approvals, Balram Bhargava, secretary,departmentofhealth research and director general, ICMR, said at a media briefing of the ministry of health and familywelfare. Bhargava said the approvals have to be from globalagenciessuchasUSFDA, European CE/IVD, ministry of food and drugs safety South Korea, Pharmaceuticals and Medical DevicesAgencyJapan, Therapeutic Goods Administration Australia, Brazil ANVISA and WHO Emergency Use Listing procedure. People ignore social distancing norms (left) at a crowded market amid the lockdown in Gurgaon; nurses in a hospital on the occasion ofWorld Nurses Day in Thane, near Mumbai, on Tuesday ■ Real-time RT-PCR and RATapproved by global agencies exempted from validation in India ■ DCGI to accord marketing permission on the basis of their existing approvals ■ Approvals must from global agencies like USFDA, European CE/IVD,WHO EUAlisting Continued on Page 2 390,995 seven-day average of new cases, a record high 22.99 m total infections as on May 11 249,992 total fatalities as on May 11 One in every three deaths reported worldwide each day are in India AMID A SHORTAGE of vaccine does, Maharashtra on Tuesday decided to divert three lakh vials of Covaxin meant forthe 18-44 age group forthe use of the people aged 45 years and above, reports PTI.The state government said over five lakh people above 45 are awaiting the second jab due to the shortage. ■ Page 2 THE TELANGANA GOVERNMENT on Tuesdaydecidedtoimposea10-daylockdowninthestatestartingMay12,toprevent further spread of coronavirus, reports PTI. The Nagaland government too on Tuesday decided to clamp total lockdowninthestateforsevendaysfrom May 14 to check the surge. FE BUREAU 85.5 88.4 76.7 64.5 78 66.4 94.5 May 9 Apr 18 Mar 28 Mar 7 Jan 24 Feb 14 Jan 3 Dec 13 Nov 1 Nov 22 Oct 11 Sep 20 Aug 9 Aug 30 Jul 19 Jun 7 Jun 28 Apr 26 May 17 45.8 68 84.9 Nomura India Business Resumption Index (NIBRI) Apr 5 Continued on Page 2 US AUTHORISED PFIZER and BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine for use in children as young as 12 and said they could begin receivingshotsassoonasThursday,widening the inoculation drive as vaccination rates have slowed significantly, reports PTI.This is the first vaccine to be authorised in the US forages 12 to 15. The rolling state-wide lockdowns are hurting sequential growth but Nomura economists caution the drop in mobility exaggerates the hit to economic acitivty. Mar 15 THE US IS looking at joint production of Johnson and Johnson’sCovid-19vaccineinIndia and ways to help manufacturers like the Serum Institute of India (SII) to boost production, Daniel B Smith, the Charge D'Affaires of the US embassy, said on Tuesday. Smith also said that the efficacy of AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine manufacturedataproductionfacilityin Baltimore is not yet clear and the Food and Drug Administration has not yet certified that the doses are available for anyone's use or for export. Last month, the White House said that the US plans to share 60 million doses of AstraZeneca'svaccine globally as soon as they become available,and India expected a significant chunk of the total stockpile. At a media briefing, Smith saidtheUSwasconcernedover the current course of the pandemic in India, not simply because of the humanitarian catastrophe but also due to the fact that it has global implications, noting that the Biden administration was standing with New Delhi to help deal with the crisis. Telangana announces 10-day lockdown, 7 days in Nagaland Business resumption at new lows Feb 23 PRESS TRUST OF INDIA New Delhi, May 11 Maha to divert 3L Covaxin doses for 45-plus age group Covid surge 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 US eyes joint production of J&J vaccine in India US kids ages 12 to 15 to get vaccinated from tomorrow The most common ground for rejection of health claim is incorrect or false information in the application/ claim form. Non-disclosure of pre-existing disease is another reason ■ Personal Finance, P7 Source: Google, Apple, CMIE, Bloomberg and Nomura Global Economics QuickPicks Central Vista project: Centre against suspension of work OPPOSING ANY suspension of the work on the construction of Central Vista project amid Covid surge, the Centre on Tuesday told the Delhi HC that it is just another attempt to stall the proposed multi-crore project, even when all the protocols and guidelines are being strictly adhered to, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. PAGE 3 Moody’s slashes FY22 India forecast to 9.3% FE BUREAU New Delhi, May 11 FE BUREAU Pune, May 11 Health claim rejected? SECOND JOLT Foxconn’s iPhone output in India slumps by over 50% PRODUCTION OF the iPhone 12 at a Foxconn factory in Chennai has slumped by over 50% because workers infected with Covid have had to leave their posts, reports Reuters. Over 100 employees in Tamil Nadu, one of the worst-hit states in India, have tested positive and the company has enforced a no-entry ban at its factory until late May. PAGE 4 Seven-day virus average at new high REUTERS Bengaluru, May 11 INDIA'S CORONAVIRUS CRISIS showed scant sign of easing on Tuesday, with a seven-day average of newcases at a record high and international health authorities warning the country’svariant of thevirus poses a global concern. India’s daily cases rose by 329,942, while deaths from the disease rose by 3,876, according to the health ministry.India’stotalinfections are now at 22.99 million,while total fatalities rose to 249,992. India leads the world in the daily average number of new deathsreported,accountingfor one in every three deaths reported worldwide each day, accordingtoaReuterstally.The seven-dayaverageofnewcases is at a record high of 390,995. The WHO said the coronavirusvariantfirstidentifiedin the countrylast yearwas being classified as a variant of global concern, with some preliminary studies showing that it spreads more easily. Continued on Page 2 GLOBAL RATING AGENCY Moody’s on Tuesday sharply trimmedits India growthforecast for FY22 to 9.3% from 13.7% estimated in February, stating that the severe second wave of Covid will “slow the near-term economic recovery and could weigh on longerterm growth dynamics”. However, it raised the FY23 growthprojectionforthecountry to 7.9% from 6.2% anticipated earlier. Still, over the longerterm,itexpectedgrowth tohoveraround6%.Theagency also pegged India's real GDP contraction in FY21 at 7.2%, against 7% expected earlier. Moody’s revised estimates come days afterS&P,which had inMarchexpectedIndiatogrow by 11% in FY22,lately forecast thegrowthrateslippingto9.8% under a “moderate” scenario where Covid infections peak in May itself. However, both the agencies have retained India’s sovereign rating at the lowest investment grade. In its latest update on Tuesday, Moody’s projected India’s general government fiscal deficit (both Centre and states) ■ However, S&P recently cut India growth forecast for FY22 to 9.8% from 11% seen previously, under a 'moderate' scenario where Covid infections peak in May itself both Moody's and S&Phave retained India’s sovereign rating at the lowest investment grade ■ In its latest update, Moody’s projected India’s general government fiscal deficit to rise to about 11.8% ofGDPin FY22, comparedwith previous forecast of 10.8% torisetoabout11.8%ofGDPin FY22,comparedwiththeprevious forecast of 10.8% and an estimated 14% in FY21. Similarly, the combined impact of slower growth and a wider deficitwilldrivethegeneralgovernmentdebtburdento90%of GDPinFY22,graduallyrisingto 92%in FY24,it said. Continued on Page 2 NHAI’s FY22 construction target stiff DESPITE COVID STILL ravagingthenation,theNational Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has set an ambitioustargettobuildnew highways with combined length of 4,600 km in the current fiscal year, reports Surya Sarathi Ray in New Delhi. Last fiscal,NHAI constructed a record 4,192 km of highways, up from 3,979 km developed in 2019-20 and 3,380km in 2018-19. Though the target forthe current year appears to be a tall order, the NHAI believes that it could meet it with reliance on EPC projects and HAM projects. The authority has a robust stream of funds including budgetary outlays, borrowings, and the funds being realised through the tolloperate-transfer. ■ Page 3 PANDEMIC BLUES AI, BPCL sales likely to be delayed till Sept PRASANTA SAHU New Delhi, May 11 WITH THE SECOND wave of coronavirus hampering movement of executives of bidders, the asset evaluation of the two large CPSEs on the block — BPCL and Air India — is being delayed. This has increased the chances of the due-diligence process getting extended,and according to official sources, financial bids for the two firms is likely to be delayed by three months to September. The central government is, however, still confident that both the transactions would be completed in the current fiscal. “The transaction advisers are in touchwith bidders,who have sought extra time for putting in bids for Air India. Covid has affected mobility of bidders’ representatives…site Second Covid wave has affected bidders’ due diligence ofAI and BPCL Extra time given to bidders to place financial bids Sources are still confident of concluding both the deals in FY22 inspection is not happening,” an official said. The official added that the BPCLsale processwas also facing similar difficulties. Continued on Page 2 STALLED SHOOTS OTTs may buy content to bolster pipeline of new releases ASMITA DEY New Delhi, May 11 GIVEN THE CANCELLATION of shoots and uncertainty about new schedules will disrupt the release calendar of original content by over-thetop players they could look to acquire content from other production houses. New releases are crucial for OTT players — both to retain subscribers and acquire new ones. MostcontentcompaniesFE spoke to said they may not be abletomeettheirquarterlytargets and that some scheduled launches would be delayed. However,contentplannedtobe releasedbeforeJunewillstayon schedule since production has been completed. Hungama Digital, which initially aimed to release over 20 originals in FY22, has four shows stuck at various stages ofproduction.Theywereslated to be premiered in the JulySeptember quarter. Sanjeev Lamba, executive producer, originals at Hungama Digital, said to what extent the release calendar will be impacted depends on when shooting resumes. Had shoots recommenced mid-May, the disruptionwouldhavebeenminimal. “Maybewehavetobealittlebit more open to acquisitions over the course of the next six months,”Lamba told FE. Continued on Page 2 Kolkata
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