ECONOMY, P2 COMPANIES, P4 LOW BASE EFFECT Output of eight core infrastructure sectors rises 8.9% in June INTERNATIONAL, P8 OPEN DOOR POLICY OIL IS WELL NET WORTH HIT Petroleum ministry seeks foreign and private investments in oil and gas production Petronas JV will not cannibalise IOC’s existing fuel retail biz: Vaidya Jeff Bezos loses $13.5 bn after Amazon reports disappointing results NEW DELHI, SATURDAY, JULY 31, 2021 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM VOL. XLVII NO. 130, 30 PAGES, `10.00 (PATNA `10.00, RAIPUR `10.00) P U B L I S H E D F R O M : A H M E D A B A D , B E N G A L U R U , C H A N D I G A R H , C H E N N A I , H Y D E R A B A D , K O C H I , K O L K ATA , L U C K N O W, M U M B A I , N E W D E L H I , P U N E READ TO LEAD SENSEX: 52,586.84 ▼ 66.23 NIFTY: 15,763.05 ▼ 15.40 NIKKEI 225: 27,283.59 ▼ 498.83 HANG SENG: 25,961.03 ▼ 354.29 `/$: 74.42 ▼ 0.13 `/€: 88.54 ▼ 0.33 BRENT: $76.04 ▼ $0.01 GOLD: `48,263 ▲ `114 IN THE NEWS Govt contains fiscal deficit at 18% of FY22BE in Q1 THANKS TO A rise in tax revenue upon a low base, a surge in non-tax receipts attributable to the higherthan-expected surplus transfers from the RBI and economical spending, the government managed to contain its fiscal deficit in April-June quarter at 18.2% of the budget estimate (BE) for 2021-22, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. Google took down 1.54 lakh items in May-June in India GOOGLE REMOVED 71,132 pieces of content in May and took 83,613 removal actions in June following user complaints, it said in its monthly transparency reports released on Friday, reports PTI. It also removed 6,34,357 pieces of content in May and 5,26,866 in June as a result of automated detection. Forex reserves down by $1.581 bn to $611.149 bn INDIA'S FOREIGN EXCHANGE reserves declined by $1.581 billion to stand at $611.149 billion for the week ended July 23, the central bank data showed on Friday, reports PTI. GOOD NEWS! CHARGED UP Tata Motors to launch 10 EV models by FY25 US to hold rare second lottery for H-1B visas A relief for thousands of Indian software professionals seeking the work visa We will be launching at least 10 EV models before FY25, so we have aggressive growth plans, and towards that we will also do a capital raise for the EV segment alone at an appropriate time —N CHANDRASEKARAN, CHAIRMAN TATA MOTORS To account for 25% of total sales FE BUREAU Mumbai, July 30 ELECTRIC VEHICLES WILL accountfor25%oftotalsalesof Tata Motors (TML) over the mediumtolongtermasitscales up its plans in the segment rapidly, chairman N Chandrasekarantoldshareholdersat the company’s 76th Annual GeneralMeeting,heldonFriday through audio-visual format. Currently, the EV segment is contributing only about 2% to the company’s passenger vehicle volumes. “TML has a very ambitious goal for EV. We will be launching at least 10 EV models before FY25, so we have aggressive growth plans, and towards that we will also doacapitalraisefortheEVsegment alone at an appropriate time,”Chandrasekaran said. InFY21too,hesaidthatthe performance of the EV business is “particularly noteworthy”. “We strengthened our market leadership to 71.4% led bysalesof more than 4,000 NexonEVunitssinceitslaunch last year,”he said. Continued on Page 2 Hindustan Zinc to invest $1 billion to replace diesel vehicles with battery EVs GOOD SHOW Clockwise: India’s PV Sindhu in action at a match against Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi; India players celebrate after scoring against Japan during a men's hockey match and India's Lovlina Borgohain lands a punch on Chen Nien-Chin of Chinese Taipei during the 2020 Summer Olympics, in Tokyo on Friday IN PARLIAMENT Key financial sector Bills tabled amid din Special Features Features that you don’t see in Indian cars nowadays From a cigarette lighter to an audio cassette player, from front bench seats to long radio antennas, a lot of features earlier found inside many car cabins have disappeared. ■ Motobahn, P7 First quarter was a mixed bag for ICICI Bank Asset quality suffered even as loan and core PPOP growth were positives; EPS for FY22/23e cut by ~3% to factor in slightly higher credit costs; TP up to `790; ‘Buy’ retained ■ Investor, P7 QuickPicks Specialty steel PLI: Govt expects robust response from large firms THE GOVERNMENT expects the `6,322-crore PLI scheme for specialty steel to be received well by the industry and incentive outgo of `775 crore in 2023-24, the year when the disbursal of the sops begins, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. According to the government’s estimate, the highest outgo of the incentive is expected to be in 202526 at `1,394 crore, followed by `1,377 crore for 2026-27 and `1,293 crore for 2027-28. For 2024-25, the outgo has been pegged at `1,088 crore. PAGE 2 Pizza Hut and KFC franchisee’s `1,838-cr IPO to open on Aug 4 DEVYANI INTERNATIONAL, the largest franchisee of Pizza Hut, KFC and Costa Coffee in India, on Friday fixed a price band of `86-90 a share for its `1,838-crore initial share sale, reports PTI. The three-day IPO will open for subscription on August 4, and conclude on August 6, the company announced. The IPO consists of a fresh issue of equity shares worth `440 crore and an offer-for-sale of up to 155,333,330 equity shares by promoter and existing shareholder. PAGE 9 Acme Solar raises $334 million through offshore green bonds ACME SOLAR has raised $334 million through offshore green bonds with a tenure of five years and a coupon rate of 4.7%, the company said on Friday, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. The money will be utilised in 12 projects being developed by the company. Acme Solar’s current portfolio stands at 4,800 mega-watt (MW), of which 2,200 MW are operating and the remaining are under construction. PAGE 12 signed an agreement with Finnish firm Normet Group Oytointroducefrontlinebattery-powered service equipment in underground mining.ItwilldeploythreeofEVs in the first phase. ■ Page 4 DICGC Steps to facilitate privatisation of state-run insurers, give cover for bank deposits, make LLP form more attractive ● COVID-19 HINDUSTAN ZINC WILL be investing about $1 billion to replace diesel-run vehicles and equipment with battery EVs across its eight mines in the next five years,CEO Arun Misra said,reports PTI.It has LALIT K JHA Washington, July 30 LLP GIBNA FE BUREAU New Delhi, July 30 ‘Delta variant may cause more severe infection, spread as easily as chickenpox’ PRESS TRUST OF INDIA New York, July 30 THE DELTA VARIANT of the coronavirus may cause more severe illness than all other known versions of the virus and spread as easily as chickenpox,US media reports quotinganinternaldocumentfrom the US health authority said. The document from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) outlines unpublished data that shows fully vaccinated people might spread the Delta variant, first identified in India,at the same rate as unvaccinated people, reports said. The contents of the document — a slide presentation — were first reported by The Washington Post on Thursday. DrRochelle PWalensky,the director of the CDC, acknowledged on Tuesday that vaccinated people with so-called breakthrough infectionsofthe Delta variant carry just as much virus in the nose and throat as unvaccinated people and may spread it just as readily,if less often. But the internal document lays out a broader and even grimmerview of the variant. Continued on Page 14 (Amendment) Bill (Amendment) Bill (Amendment) Bill Introduced in RS; to give customers of troubled banks access to deposits up to ` five lakh in just 90 days Introduced in RS; to decriminalise a dozen offences for LLPs; many start-ups to gain Introduced in LS; to facilitate privatisation ofa insurer, and help deepen insurance penetration bythe Cabinet onWednesday. Thegovernmentintroduced in the Rajya Sabha the Deposit Insurance Credit Guarantee Corporation (DICGC) Amendment Bill,which will give customers access to their deposits upto`5lakhwithinjust90days iftheirstressedbanksareplaced undermoratorium.TheBillcoversallbanks,includingco-operativebanks,andcomesasarelief fordepositorsofPMCBankthat is still undermoratorium. Continued on Page 14 Complaints against e-comm firms being looked into: Govt THE GOVERNMENT HAS forwarded complaints against e-commerce players about deep discounting, predatory pricing and the misuse of market dominance to relevant agencies for “necessary examination and investigation”, Parliament was informed on Friday,reports fe Bureau in NewDelhi. The complaints were received from traders, retailers and industry associations, MoSforcommerceandindustrySomParkash saidintheRajyaSabha.FEhadearlierreported that in December 2020, the commerce and industry ministry had written to the RBI and the ED to take “necessary action” on allegations made by a key traders’ body against Amazon,Flipkart andWalmart. ■ Page 2 Monsoon revives FE BUREAU Sowing picks up, Kharif area deficit narrows Monsoon rainfall has been normal or above normal in 81% of the country as on Friday; among major states, only Kerala reported deficiency. Sowing of summer crop improved significantly in the past week, following widespread rainfall in many parts of the country Kharif sowing* Monsoon rainfall % chg (against year-ago) (June 1-July 30, % chg from LPA) -4 East/North-east -5.5 North-west Coarse cereals -5.7 Central India 8.71.6 All Crops ■ First draw didn’t give enough numbers ofCongressionalmandated H-1Bvisas Visa has annual numerical limit cap of 65,000 visas each fiscal as mandated by Congress First 20,000 petitions filed on behalfof thosewith a US master's degree or higher exempt from cap dated visas.The visa, the most sought-after among Indian IT professionals, is a non-immigrant visa that allows US firms to employforeigners in specialityoccupationsthatrequiretheoretical/technicalexpertise. Continued on Page 2 Non-food bank credit grows 5.9% in June NON-FOOD BANK CREDIT growthstoodat5.9%inJune compared to 6% in the yearago period, according to RBI data released on Friday, reportsPTI.Credittoagricultureandalliedactivitiescontinuedtoperformwell,regis- teringanacceleratedgrowth of 11.4% in the reporting month compared to 2.4% in thesamemonthoftheprevious year, as per the central bank’s data on Sectoral Deployment of Bank Credit — June 2021. ■ Page 6 All India 39 49 North East West South Central All India ^10-yr average; Source: Central Water Commission Source: IMD FE BUREAU New Delhi, July 30 STATE-RUN POWER DISTRIBUTION companies (discoms) willrequiretoapplytotheUnion powerministrybyDecember31 toreceivetheCentre'sassistance undertherecentlyapproved`3lakh-crore revival scheme, powerministerRKSinghsaidon Friday.As per the design of the scheme, loss-making discoms will have access to the Centre's funds only after preparing a convincing programme forloss reduction, which has to be approvedbytherespectivestate governments. Under the scheme to be implemented in the five years toFY26,theCentrewillforkout `97,631 crore. “Most states assuredusthattheywillsubmit their proposals before October 31,” the minister said. He added: “We will provide assistance to states for strengthen- US-BASED FIRST SOLAR on Fridaysaiditintendstoinvest $684millioninanew3,300MW module manufacturing plant in Tamil Nadu, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. “India is an inherently sustainable market, under- 40 18 -1 Discoms must apply for central grants by December 31: Singh The Centre's aid for discoms is aimed at creating system where the entire electricity distribution system is controlled by artificial intelligence. —RK SINGH, POWER MINISTER ing and modernisation of systemsso thatdistributionmanagement systems, SCADA systems, smart grids and smart meters can be put in place.This will allow the whole distribution system to be controlled by artificial intelligence.” Continued on Page 2 First Solar plans $684-million unit in TN 68 49 48 43 33 32 35 38 40 1 South peninsula -4.7 *As of July 30; source: agriculture ministry (% of capacity) July 29, 2021 Normal level^ -3 Oilseeds Sugarcane Reservoir level -15 -3 Pulses Cotton on H-1B to hire thousands of employees each year from countries like India and China POWER LOSS AMID FREQUENT DISRUPTIONS in parliamentary proceedings on Friday,the government introduced three key financial sector Bills to offer relief to depositors of stressed banks, facilitate the privatisation of a general insurer and boostease of doingbusinessfor limited liability partnerships (LLPs).AlltheseBillswerecleared Paddy IN WHAT CAN be good news for hundreds of Indian IT professionals seeking the H-1B workvisa,the US’immigration agencyhas decided to conduct a rare second lottery for the most sought-after visas to decide on the successful applicants who could not make it in the first random selection. The US Citizenship and Immigration Services said on Thursdaythatadecisionwastaken afterdeterminingthatthecomputerised draw of lots for H-1B visas conducted early this year didnotgivethemenoughnumbersoftheCongressional-man- ■ Tech firms depend pinned by a growing economy and appetite for energy, with a well-defined goal that will need over25,000 MWof solar to be deployed every year for the next nine years,” said Mark Widmar, CEO, First Solar. ■ Page 4 NEW FAVOURITE Venture capital firms turn to India with China’s tech crackdown SARITHA RAI & ZHEPING HUANG July 30 VENTURE CAPITAL INVESTORS have a new favourite developing market. The value of venture deals in India surged to $7.9 billion in July, while China investments plummeted to $4.8 billion, according to data compiled by research firm Preqin. That’s the first time the South Asian nation has surpassed its larger neighbor on a monthly basis since 2013,the firm said. Caveats apply: One month of data may have limited significance since venture dealmakingtendstobelumpywith bursts of activity followed by periods of lull. China had already topped $65 billion in the first half of the year, suggesting its total for 2021 will likely exceed India’s. Still,the countries appear to be moving in opposite directions.Xi Jinping’s administration has unleashed a series of crackdowns on private compa- Tale of Two VCs $ billion 18 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Chinese VC investment at its lowest in over a year while India sets records Chinese India $ Jan ‘20 Mar May Source: Preqin/Bloomberg Jul Sep Nov Jan ‘21 Mar May Jul nies in technology and beyond, spooking investors about prospectsforthefuture.India’sstartups are going public to fervent demand — food-delivery app Zomato has soared about 75% since its debut — signaling the opportunityforprofit. “Global investors are increasingly excited about the potentialforIndiancompanies competing in India and in other markets around the world,” said Anis Uzzaman, chief executive officer and general partner at Pegasus New Delhi Tech Ventures, based in San Jose,California. The July total for India was boosted by a $3.6 billion funding round by Flipkart, the ecommerce giant controlled by Walmart.The investment valued the business at $37.6 billion,asitpreparesforapotential IPO in 2022.China saw a flurry ofdealsinJunejustaheadofthe decline.Preqinsaidthelasttime India surpassed China in venturefundraising,in2013,italso involved a Flipkart deal. — BLOOMBERG
The Financial Express (FE) is a business paper that’s closest to the people who are in the business of business. From business policies to market trends to new developments, The Financial Express comes packed with incisive news on every relevant issue.