OPINION, P6 NATION, P5 ASHOK GULATI TOUGH CHOICE Fight vaccine hesitancy to combat Covid’s rural spread The Centre must procure vaccines from global vaccine-makers and distribute these to the states US-STYLE Decision on Class 12 board exams by June 1: Pokhriyal EDITORIAL BACK PAGE, P12 UK minister Priti Patel to unveil digital visas to count migrants NEW DELHI, MONDAY, MAY 24, 2021 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM READ TO LEAD VOL. XLVII NO. 71, 12 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 IN THE NEWS Discoms' dues to gencos fall 3% to `78,379 cr in March TOTAL DUES owed by electricity distribution companies to power producers fell 3.4% to `78,379 crore in March 2021 as compared to the year-ago period, reports PTI. Outstanding dues of discoms towards electricity producers have been increasing year-onyear as well as month-onmonth for years. 3 dead, 3 wounded in shooting outside Ohio bar AT LEAST three people were killed and three others were wounded in a shooting on Sunday outside a bar in Youngstown, Ohio, police said. Chief Carl Davis of the Youngstown police department said gunfire was reported shortly after 2 am on Sunday in the area of the Torch Club Bar & Grille in Youngstown, reports AP. Congo volcano's lava flows short of Goma; 5 dead CONGO'S MOUNT Nyiragongo unleashed lava that destroyed homes on the outskirts of Goma, but witnesses said on Sunday that the city of 2 million had been mostly spared, reports AP. The reserve price given by Trai earlier is seen very high by industry Reserve price recommended for 5G spectrum (3300-3600 MHz) in 2018: `492 cr per MHz ■ Amount to be paid for pan-India minimum block of 20 MHz: KIRAN RATHEE New Delhi, May 23 WITH 63% SPECTRUM remaining unsold in the auctions held in March, the government is not taking any chances and has decided to seek fresh reserve price from the Telecom Regulatory Authorityof India (Trai) forthe 5G band which is likely to be put up for sale next year. ThoughtheTraihadin2018 submitted the reserve price for 5Gspectruminthe3300-3600 Mhz—theauctionwasnotheld for this band in March — it was seenastoohighbytheindustry. Since the premium 4G band in the 700 Mhz where also the price was seen as too high, did not see any takers; the governmentwantsareviewof5Gband `9,840 cr ■ Reserve price of700 MHz: `6,568 cr per MHz ■ A pan-India 5 MHz will cost `32,840 cr ■ Total spectrum put on sale in March auction: 2308.80 MHzworth `3.92 lakh cr Total spectrum sold: 855.60 MHz (37% of the available airwaves) ■ No bids for 700 MHz and 2500 MHz Total revenue earned by govt: `77,814.80 cr fearing that otherwise industry maynot come forward to buy. Continued on Page 2 Jaypee Infra: Suraksha objects to CoC meet on NBCC offer; warns legal action REALTY FIRM Suraksha group on Sunday strongly objected to the creditors' panel of bankrupt-Jaypee Infratech to consider fresh (% chg y-o-y) 19.6 Total expenditure (% chg y-o-y) 1.5 Q1 Q2 Q3 FY21 Q4 Interest Q1 Q2 -52.6 Q3 FY21 Q4 Q2 Q3 FY21 Q4 898.8 59.5 125.5 -59.4 Q1 Q2 Q3 FY21 Q2 Q3 FY21 Q4 (bps, chg y-o-y) 4.6 Q1 Q1 RM to sales (% chg y-o-y) -3.5 -6.3 -13.1 1,042 400 -14.2 Q4 Q1 the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Sunday. The depression is expected to intensify into a cyclonic storm, "Yaas", by Monday, it added. The state Sample of 504 companies (excluding banks & financials); Source: Capitaline 3,741 FATALITIES Fresh cases at 2.40 lakh Incentives, such as duty-free import of equipment, likely for R&D Aid to widen market coverage may be offered trimming elevated logistics costs,incentivising the muchneeded research & development (R&D) and bolstering certain marketing support, one of the sources said. Continued on Page 2 governments as well as the Centre are preparing for the cyclone that will bring winds with a speed ranging 155165 kmph and gusting to 185 kmph. ■ Page 3 14 ■ It vows to pursue “all THE DAILYRISEincoronavirus cases in India remained below the 3 lakh-mark for the seventh consecutive day,with 2.4 lakh new cases recorded in a single day, the Union health ministry said on Sunday. With the fresh cases,India's tally of Covid-19 cases climbed to 2,65,30,132.The death toll due to the disease rose to 2,99,266with3,741freshfatalities,the ministrydata updated at8amshowed.Theactivecases further reduced to 28,05,399 legal avenues to defend the dispute worldwide” improved to 88.30%. “These are totally incorrect reports which were not based on true facts. Certain vested parties appear to have orchestrated such misleading reporting, which often relies upon unnamed sources and presents a lopsided picture of factual and legal developments in the case,” finance ministry said in a statement. Continued on Page 2 Continued on Page 2 Homeless people wait to receive food, distributed by nationallevel shooter Gaurav Sharma, in Chandni Chowk, Delhi comprising10.57%ofthetotal infections, while the national Covid-19 recovery rate PTI SALES SPURT E-commerce companies step up hiring SHUBHRATANDON Mumbai, May 23 GIVEN THE BIG increase in online transactions even for daily purchases, especially since the pandemic struck early in 2020, e-commerce companies have been compelled to beef up their teams across functions. HAN Digital estimates there has been more than a 27% year-on-year increase in active jobs in the technologysegment of e-commerce tech during JanuaryMarch. Of this, about 15% accountsforreplacements and the rest are new positions. Compensationtoohasseen Median salaries for tech roles in e-commerce with 8 years experience Roles (` per annum) 2020 2021 Estimate AI engineer/ data scientist FullStack developer UIUX engineer Devops engineer Cloud architect 24,50,000 26,00,000 18,50,000 20,00,000 16,00,000 17,00,000 15,00,000 16,50,000 21,50,000 23,00,000 Source: HAN Digital ILLUSTRATION: ROHNIT PHORE an increase. Vijay Sivaram, CEO,Quess ITStaffing said the industry was seeing pay hikes of 15-18% for those with semi-niche skills and upwards of 30% for those with niche skills.“Joining and retention bonuses, up-skilling options are also part of the offer package,”hesaid.This isless truefor -0.4 DESPITE THE GUARANTEED growth in Goods and Services Tax (GST) revenue, state governments have seen a dip in overall tax buoyancy in the last couple of years, causing them to curb capital expenditure and under-perform in comparison to central public sector undertakings (CPSEs) and even the Centre,the other two pillars of public capex. This amounted to bucking the trend of several immediate past years, when states had turned in a better show in fiscal consolidation and capital spending, maintaining a public capex ratio of 5:3.6:3.4 (states, CPSEs and Centre in FY20). Had the Centre not given the states extra borrowing leeway and largely protected the GSTcompensation evenwhile being itself hit by the pandemic blues, the states would have had to cut asset-creating expenditure even more sharply. Of course, the Centre ■ Centre confirms challenging The Hague tribunal award favouring Cairn on March 22 PRESS TRUST OF INDIA New Delhi, May 23 2 States' tax revenue THE CENTRE ON Sunday refuted reports that it has purportedly asked state-owned banks to withdraw funds from foreign currency accounts abroad in anticipation of the potential seizure of such accounts by Cairn Energy. Q4 (Growth, % y-o-y) 30 20.3 20 13 10 0 -10 -20 -15.5 FY17 FY18 FY19 FY20 FY21* It will focus on greater integration with global supply chain, post-Covid five years is expected to be rolled out from October 1. Coming as it is in the wake of the unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic, the FTP would focus more on ways to ensure India’s greater integration with the global supply chain, States' capex PRASANTA SAHU New Delhi, May 23 New FTP to reflect Aatmanirbhar initiative and ease of doing trade It may aim to reduce high logistics costs from 13% of GDP to 8% in 5 years Revenue buoyancy declines; tax transfers by Centre, GST aid help avoid a sharper fall FE BUREAU New Delhi, May 23 -217 -503 -502.8 Q2 Q3 FY21 New Delhi may choose to await WTO appellate body's verdict before altering some export schemes States’ capex down annually PSBs not asked to withdraw funds from A/cs abroad 673 PBT (% chg y-o-y) (bps, chg y-o-y) THE GOVERNMENT WILL likely retain certain key export schemes,such as those relating to special economic zones (SEZs) and export-oriented units, in the next foreign trade policy as well,even though these programmes have been challenged at the World Trade Organization (WTO), sources told FE. However, any new scheme within the FTP will be designed in sync with WTO stipulations, one of the sources said. The new FTP for the next POLICY PUSH DESPITE MARCH SPIKE ● CAIRN OPM -3.3 -33.17 -7.1 6.22 BANIKINKAR PATTANAYAK New Delhi, May 23 ALOW-PRESSUREareainthe Bay of Bengal has intensified into a depression that will cross the West Bengal and Odisha coasts on May26 as a "very severe cyclonic storm", submissions by NBCC and warned of appropriate legal actionagainstlendersifvoting on the group's offer fails to materialise. ■ Page 4 -1,141 Net sales SEZ, EoU schemes won’t go; new incentives likely for R&D, market promotion and logistics ‘Yaas’ to develop into cyclonic storm today, says IMD FE BUREAU -33.6 India Inc has turned out with smart numbers for the January-March earnings season mainly on the back of strong sales growth coupled with cost cutting measures. Net profit for a sample of 504 companies, excluding banks and financials, rose 546.65% during the period. New FTP to retain key schemes despite WTO DoT to seek fresh base price for 5G Earnings season India Inc on strong footing as sales rise, costs in control SOPS FOR R&D RELOOK most non-IT roles where the average hikes are 10-12%. As Kamal Karanth, co-founder, Xpheno points out although there is demand, companies are able to find talent. Saran Balasundaram, founder and CEO,HAN Digital expects the e-commerce industry to add a net 25,00030,000 people in 2021.“India is preferred destination for outsourcing product development and developing new age e-commercesolutions.Thetalent war for attracting the best started from August 2020 onward,”Balasundaram said. Continued on Page 2 New Delhi (Growth, % y-o-y) 21 15 12 13 7 4 -4.5 0 -7 FY17 FY18 FY19 FY20 FY21* *For eight big states reviewed by FE RE has appropriated a larger part of the available fiscal resources in the last two years by using the cess/surcharge route, especially by hiking such imposts on auto fuels. This has been to the detriment of states'fiscal powers. According to an FE analysis of the finances of eight major states for FY21, their combinedcapexat`1.44lakhcrore was down 0.4% on-year,compared with a negative growth of 7% in FY20. Continued on Page 2
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