Spectrum auction, 5G trials top Telecom Ministry agenda for new government

Source: LiveMint.com, May 23, 2019

New Delhi: Preparing the Cabinet note for spectrum auction, rolling out of the new digital communications policy and establishing regulatory sandboxes, 5G technology trials, policy on experimentation and trial spectrum for technologies in June, will top the agenda of the Union Telecom Ministry over the next three months once the new government takes over.

With election results indicative of a return of the Modi government, the telecom ministry has started getting its act together by working on the pending schedule of the last government which was on halt for the polls while awaiting a new government.

Another area awaiting decisions are settling issues on merger and transfers of licenses of the mergers and acquisitions taken so far — such as Airtel-Telenor, Airtel-TTSL, Vodafone-Idea among others.

The Department of Telecom is also preparing a Cabinet note for spectrum auction for the new government. The much-awaited spectrum auction will finally happen in the second half of 2019 where a whopping 8,293.95 Mhz of telecom frequencies at an estimated total base price of ₹5.77 lakh crore are expected to go under the hammer. Read the rest of this entry »

With end of uncertainty, FDI flows may perk up

Source: The Hindu Business Line, May 23, 2019

With the NDA set to form the government once again with full majority, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is likely to receive a boost.

While the FDI flow increased sharply between 2014-15 and 2016-17, over April-December 2018, it dropped 3 per cent to $46.6 billion compared with the same period last year. This, experts say, was due to the political uncertainty in the country. Read the rest of this entry »

Uttar Pradesh’s power transfer capability rises to 12,850 MW

Source: IBEF.org, May 23, 2019

New Delhi: Uttar Pradesh’s total transfer capability (TTC) of electricity, or the capability to bring in power from outside the state, has grown to 12,850 megawatt (MW).

“The state has now increased its ability to bring power from outside the state to 12,850 MW,” Uttar Pradesh Power Transmission Corporation Ltd (UPPTCL) said in a statement.

The TTC was 10,700 MW in June 2018, while in April 2017, it was 7,800 MW.

Besides, the power transmission capacity (PTC) of the state has also reached 24,000 MW, UPPTCL said.

It was 20,700 MW in June 2018 and 16,300 MW in April 2017.

Currently, the peak demand in the state is about 19,000 MW, the statement added.

Senthil Pandian C, managing director of UPPTCL, said the statement the government has increased the TTC to meet the demand in the ongoing summer season.

“We need to cater to the industrial units, households, etc, and for that the government has increased its TTC and PTC as well so the consumers can enjoy uninterrupted power supply,” he added.

What a declining user base means for telcos in India

Source: LiveMint.com, May 22, 2019


1) Is the subscriber base falling?

The country’s mobile user base has shown a declining trend from 1.18 billion at the end of March 2018 to 1.16 billion at the end of March this year. However, the decline has not been consistent on a month-on-month (m-o-m) basis. Users in March 2019 fell by 21.86 million m-o-m, but there had been a rise of 1.7 million in the total number of users in February, mainly due to subscriber additions by Reliance Jio and BSNL, which made up for the decline in Airtel and Vodafone Idea’s customer base in that month. Vodafone Idea and Airtel count only paying customers. Trai counts each SIM as a user and includes inactive subscribers. Read the rest of this entry »

A new job market for farmers is taking root

Source: The Hindu Business Line, May 22, 2019

‘Wanted farmers’, says a Facebook advertisement.

“Dear farmer, need your support to produce healthy food for our society. Join hands with us to give healthy and better life,” it says.

And the pay package is ‘attractive’, considering the financial crisis that small and marginal farmers are facing in the country.

The interested farmers are offered an annual package of ₹1.80-2.40 lakh. Besides, they will get free food and accommodation, says the ad released on behalf of the Tamil Nadu-based Keeraikadai.

But this is not an isolated example and the ‘offer’ varies from one recruiter to another. What explains the spurt in demand for ‘practising farmers’ is the new-found obsession with farming among some high net-worth individuals (HNIs), including IT professionals and doctors. Read the rest of this entry »

M&A deals in April see 96 per cent decline to $735 million: Report

Source: Business Standard, May 22, 2019

New Delhi: The value of merger and acquisition deals announced in April stood at $735 million (over Rs 5,100 crore), a decline of 96 per cent against previous year during the same period, as per a report.

According to a report by consultancy Grant Thornton, in April last year, the total M&A deal value stood at $19,142 million.

The report said the total number of deals announced last month stood at 35. Of this, two were billion-dollar deals, while 18 were valued at or above $100 million, together contributing 91 per cent of total M&A deal value.

When compared to March 2019, M&A transactions value plummeted 92 per cent despite a 17 per cent increase in the deal volumes.

“Absence of large ticket merger transactions and/or non-closure of Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) transactions impacted the overall M&A transaction values,” Grant Thornton India LLP Director Pankaj Chopda said. Read the rest of this entry »

Key Indian companies finalise projects worth $300 mn for Kazakhstan

Source: The Economic times, May 22, 2019

New Delhi: Eyeing to widen presence in the Central Asian market, key Indian companies participated in the Astana Economic Forum and the Kazakhstan Global Investment Round Table (KGIR – 2019) on May 16-17 and finalised contracts of over $ 300 million

The Indian delegation included top officials of Punjab National Bank, NTPC, ONGC Videch Limited, CG Corp Global, India Power, as well as top officials of Indian companies India Invest, RV Healthcare, Refex Energy.

Visiting delegations of Punjab National Bank (PNB) and CG Corp Global were received by Askar Mamin,the Prime Minister of Kazakhstan.

Cooperation including interaction within the framework of the work of Tengri Bank JSC were discussed during the meeting with the Sunil Mekhta, CEO PNB. The parties also exchanged views on current global trends in the development of banking services and their potential impact on the economies of individual countries. Read the rest of this entry »