SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI



THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
B U S I N E S S

Outsourcing Destination
Satyam, 26/11 hit India

New York, March 4
A number of US firms are giving second thoughts to their outsourcing operations in India after the accounting fraud in IT major Satyam Computer and the terror attacks on Mumbai last November, a survey has said.

Gupta for tech major taking over Satyam
New Delhi, March 4
In the midst of the government-appointed Satyam board finalising the bidding norms for strategic sale, Corporate Affairs Minister P C Gupta today said preference should be given to a good technology company or a reputed industrial house to take over the IT company.

FinMin not to ease FBT norms for exporters
New Delhi, March 4
The Finance Ministry has turned down a Commerce Ministry proposal to provide relaxation to exporters, reeling under the impact of the global financial meltdown, from payment of FBT, saying such benefits cannot be granted to one section of taxpayers.



EARLIER STORIES

Sensex ends lowest in 3 yrs
March 4, 2009
RPL-RIL merger okayed
March 3, 2009
Worst is over: Nath
March 2, 2009
Chevron to quit RPL
March 1, 2009
Re breaches 51-mark
February 28, 2009
Govt unveils steps to boost exports
February 27, 2009
Moody's pegs Q3 growth at 6.1 pc
February 26, 2009
Another cut in fuel prices likely
February 25, 2009
10 SEZs approved
February 24, 2009
BSNL launches 3G services
February 23, 2009
Satyam to invite takeover bids
February 22, 2009



A sales clerk for Japan's Takashimaya department store displays a $100,000 music CD called "Woman, Sweet 10 Diamonds", made with a platinum case and studded with a total of 10 2-carat diamonds, produced by Universal Music and Japanese jeweler Nagahori in Tokyo on Wednesday. Universal Music unveiled the "world's most expensive CD" for its 10th commemorate album showcasing 18 songs compiled by female vocalists
A sales clerk for Japan's Takashimaya department store displays a $100,000 music CD called "Woman, Sweet 10 Diamonds", made with a platinum case and studded with a total of 10 2-carat diamonds, produced by Universal Music and Japanese jeweler Nagahori in Tokyo on Wednesday. Universal Music unveiled the "world's most expensive CD" for its 10th commemorate album showcasing 18 songs compiled by female vocalists. — AFP

WEF to review status of Maytas
New Delhi, March 4
The World Economic Forum (WEF) oday said it would wait for the legal investigation of crisis-ridden Maytas Infra to be completed before deciding on the infrastructure entity's status on its list of prestigious companies worldwide.

Rupee gains 43 paise
Mumbai, March 4
The Indian rupee today rebounded sharply by 43 paise to close at 51.54/55 against the greenback on heavy dollar selling by corporates at higher levels, snapping a long seven-session losing streak.

China pitches for new financial order
New Delhi, March 4
China today strongly pitched for reform of global financial institutions and establishment of a new financial order with Beijing and New Delhi playing a greater role in the decision-making process of these bodies.

Now, H-1B visa holders to get pink slips at Microsoft
Washington, March 4
Microsoft, which has recently announced shedding some 5,000 jobs, will be giving pink slips to H-1B visa holders too, despite acknowledging that this category of workers has a significant contribution to the company's success.

Canara Bank cuts interest rates
Bangalore, March 4
Canara Bank has reduced interest rates for housing loans, vehicle loans and domestic term deposits effective from March 11. Home loans up to Rs 30 lakh would now be at 8.25 per cent for the the first 12 months, 9.25 per cent for the next 48 months and BPLR minus 2.50 per cent subject to a minimum of 10 per cent thereafter.

Royal Crown Derby to foray into India
Chandigarh, March 4
Indians are all set to get a taste of British royalty. World’s leading hand-made porcelain maker, Royal Crown Derby, patronised by the British royal family for almost 250 years, is now all set to enter India.

29 FDI proposals cleared
New Delhi, March 4
The government has cleared foreign direct investment (FDI) proposals worth Rs 616.08 crore. Of the 29 proposals cleared, AAPC of Singapore will invest Rs 365.78 crore into its Indian subsidiary.

 





Top








 

Outsourcing Destination
Satyam, 26/11 hit India

New York, March 4
A number of US firms are giving second thoughts to their outsourcing operations in India after the accounting fraud in IT major Satyam Computer and the terror attacks on Mumbai last November, a survey has said.

The annual survey of 100 chief financial officers, conducted by leading accounting and consulting firm BDO Seidman, LLP, also revealed that many US firms would consider pulling out their outsourcing operations from traditional destinations like India due to the economic downturn.

"This year we are seeing three global factors that are causing US technology companies to pull back from traditional outsourcing locations, led by the recent boom and bust of the worldwide economy.

"Satyam's fraud case and the terrorist attacks in Mumbai are causing a lot of companies to reconsider operating in India," Douglas Sirotta, a partner in BDO Seidman's Technology Practice said in a statement.

India ranks third after the US and China as a preferred outsourcing destination for the companies that participated in the survey.

About 22 per cent said the US is the outsourcing destination they are most likely to consider in 2009, compared to 16 per cent for China and 13 per cent for India. — PTI

Top

 

Gupta for tech major taking over Satyam

New Delhi, March 4
In the midst of the government-appointed Satyam board finalising the bidding norms for strategic sale, Corporate Affairs Minister P C Gupta today said preference should be given to a good technology company or a reputed industrial house to take over the IT company.

"It would be better if we have some sort of preference for good tech or good industrial house for taking over the company. We should give some weightage (to them)," Gupta told private television channel CNBC TV18.

He said the suitors for Satyam are in constant touch with the Satyam board and the board is also getting suggestions on the bidding process and the guidelines would be finalised soon.

Yesterday, the minister had said the much-awaited bidding guidelines by Satyam Computer for inducting a strategic investor will be finalised in the next 10-15 days.

The scam-hit company is being run by the government-appointed board.

A prospective bidder has said sooner the company is able to finalize the process the better it is for its viability. If the bidding norms take another 10-15 days to be finalised and then the approvals are sought, then Satyam would be able to invite bids only by the month-end, it added. — PTI

Top

 

FinMin not to ease FBT norms for exporters

New Delhi, March 4
The Finance Ministry has turned down a Commerce Ministry proposal to provide relaxation to exporters, reeling under the impact of the global financial meltdown, from payment of FBT, saying such benefits cannot be granted to one section of taxpayers.

The issue of relaxing the Fringe Benefit Tax (FBT) norms for foreign travel undertaken for export purposes was raised by Commerce Ministry officials at a recent meeting of the Committee of Secretaries.

The proposal, sources said, was shot down by the Revenue Department which argued that any move to relax the FBT, which was introduced in Budget 2005 by the then Finance Minister P Chidambaram, would have to be done across-the-board with the approval of legislature.

Moreover, the Revenue Department officials added that such benefits cannot be restricted only to the export sector.

The Commerce Ministry officials were of the view that FBT component with regard to foreign travel should be relaxed to spur exports which are worst hit as a result of the global financial crisis. India's exports, after a gap of seven years, moved into negative zone in October declining by 12.1 per cent.

With major economies of the world, including US, Japan and the Europe slipping into recession, India's exports continued to remain in the negative for the last four months slipping by 16 per cent in January.

Under the Income Tax Act, FBT is paid by an employer on facilities or amenities provided by them to their staff. The incidence of tax depends upon the kind of facilities provided by the employers. The exporters have been asking the government to relax FBT for travel by employees who have to frequently go abroad in connection with exports.

The government has already announced a host of measures including interest subvention of 2 per cent and pre and post shipment credit at lower rates to boost exports. — PTI 

Top

 

WEF to review status of Maytas

New Delhi, March 4
The World Economic Forum (WEF) oday said it would wait for the legal investigation of crisis-ridden Maytas Infra to be completed before deciding on the infrastructure entity's status on its list of prestigious companies worldwide.

The WEF had named Maytas Infra along with 22 other Indian firms on its list of 'Global Growth Companies' published in December last year.

Responding to a question on whether the WEF would exclude the company from the list, an official of the Forum said that it is aware of the allegations surrounding Maytas Infra and the ongoing process.

"As such we would wait until the proper process of legal investigation has taken place before making any comment or taking any action...," a WEF spokesperson told PTI in an emailed statement from Geneva.

The government has initiated an investigation against Maytas Infra for alleged financial irregularities committed by its promoter group — the family of Satyam Computer founder B Ramalinga Raju.

Moreover, the government has moved the Company Law Board seeking permission to supersede the company's existing board.

Meanwhile, the Forum created the community of Global Growth Companies (GCCs) to highlight the next generation of industry leaders, the spokesperson said. — PTI

Top

 

Rupee gains 43 paise

Mumbai, March 4
The Indian rupee today rebounded sharply by 43 paise to close at 51.54/55 against the greenback on heavy dollar selling by corporates at higher levels, snapping a long seven-session losing streak.

The rupee also got support from stability in equity markets despite sustained capital outflows amid a firm dollar overseas.

In fairly active trade at the Interbank Foreign Exchange (Forex) market, the domestic unit resumed steady at 51.95/97 a dollar from yesterday's close of 51.97/98 and touched a low of 52.04 in early trade.

However, heavy dollar selling by large corporates helped the rupee to recover sharply to 51.43 before ending the day at 51.54/55 a dollar.

On Tuesday, the rupee touched an all-time intra-trade low of Rs 52.20 a dollar. — PTI

Top

 

China pitches for new financial order

New Delhi, March 4
China today strongly pitched for reform of global financial institutions and establishment of a new financial order with Beijing and New Delhi playing a greater role in the decision-making process of these bodies.

Chinese Ambassador Zhang Yan said both countries should work together to press the developed countries to bear their responsibility and prevent them from shifting the burden on to developing countries.

He said India and China should enhance cooperation in the economic field and join hands in ensuring reform of the international financial system to meet challenges posed by the economic downturn.

"China and India should strengthen cooperation and coordination in the reform of the international financial system and accelerate the establishment of a new international financial order," Yan said addressing a conference organised by the CII here.

"At the same time, we shall push for reform of the existing international financial institutions with a view to increase the role of China and India in decision-making process and empower them with greater say and representation in the international financial institutions," he said.

Observing that the two economic powers should "go hand in hand" and enhance bilateral cooperation in the economic field, Yan said such a move will send out a positive message and help the world economy to a great extent.

"We must beef up our confidence. At the time of crisis, confidence is crucial for fighting against the crisis and achieving early recovery," Yan said.

"When China and India, the two largest developing countries, run their affairs well, it can help restore confidence in global economic growth and curb spread of the international financial crisis," he said.

Noting that both countries must take effective measures to tackle the crisis, he said it would help restore confidence in global economic growth and curb the spread of the international financial crisis.

"China and India's economies have both the strength and resilience against the crisis. We have huge domestic markets, sufficient financial resources and opportunities for investment, the Chinese Ambassador said. He also said governments of India and China have taken "decisive actions" by putting in place a series of stimulus packages with specific steps to counter the negative impact of the slowdown on the economies of the two countries. — PTI 

Top

 

Now, H-1B visa holders to get pink slips at Microsoft

Washington, March 4
Microsoft, which has recently announced shedding some 5,000 jobs, will be giving pink slips to H-1B visa holders too, despite acknowledging that this category of workers has a significant contribution to the company's success.

Microsoft, in a letter to Senator Charles Grassley, has said the H-1B work visa programme helped hire the best available talent of the world.

The present Microsoft line can be seen in the context of the policies of the Obama regime, which gives preference to companies hiring Americans in giving bailout.

H1-B employees have always accounted for less than 15 per cent of Microsoft's US workforce, the level that is used in immigration law to determine whether a company is "H-1B dependent," the letter said.

Answering a specific question from the Senator on H-1B people losing their jobs, Microsoft said: "Workers on H-1B visas and other temporary work visas make up only a small percentage of our overall workforce, but they were also among the employees impacted by the reductions announced in January.

Employees outside the United States were also impacted." — PTI

Top

 

Canara Bank cuts interest rates

Bangalore, March 4
Canara Bank has reduced interest rates for housing loans, vehicle loans and domestic term deposits effective from March 11. Home loans up to Rs 30 lakh would now be at 8.25 per cent for the the first 12 months, 9.25 per cent for the next 48 months and BPLR minus 2.50 per cent subject to a minimum of 10 per cent thereafter.

For loans between Rs 30 lakh and Rs 1 crore the rate will be 9 per cent for the first 12 months, 9.75 per cent for the next 48 months and BPLR minus 2.00 per cent subject to a minimum of 10.50 per cent thereafter. — PTI 

Top

 

Royal Crown Derby to foray into India
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 4
Indians are all set to get a taste of British royalty. World’s leading hand-made porcelain maker, Royal Crown Derby, patronised by the British royal family for almost 250 years, is now all set to enter India.

With most Western economies gripped by recession, the porcelain maker, which uses the crown in its backstamp, is now looking at emerging economies like India to sell its hi-end products. The tableware and figurines could cost anything between £9,000 and £ 1million and will be sold in India through exclusive interior design houses. The company is looking at a £10-million market in India, and hopes to sell its products worth £250,000 in the first year of its operations.

Talking to TNS here today, Mike J Lightfoot, who is marketing the products in India, said marketing initiatives for these exquisite products would be very exclusive. “We have no intention of opening any retail outlets in India. We have tied up with two interior design houses in Mumbai and one in Delhi, to sell our products,” he said.

In town as part of a business mission from East Midlands in the UK, Lightfoot said considering the high spending power of the Punjabi community and their love for British heritage and design excellence, he was also looking at a tie-up with a design house here. “Our launch in India will be low key. A few samples and our catalogue will be available at these selected design houses, and our Indian connossieurs can chose and order. The orders will be delivered within four to six months from our manufacturing base in Derby,” he said, adding that they would also be offering monogrammed single pieces.

Lightfoot said earlier the Royal Crown Derby products were sold in India and adorned the dining tables of the erstwhile Indian royals, but they stopped marketing their goods here in the early 20th century. “We had been concentrating on the US and other developed countries. But with the western world facing a financial downturn and the Indian growth story still going strong, we have decided to re-enter the Indian market,” he added.

Top

 

29 FDI proposals cleared
Tribune News service

New Delhi, March 4
The government has cleared foreign direct investment (FDI) proposals worth Rs 616.08 crore. Of the 29 proposals cleared, AAPC of Singapore will invest Rs 365.78 crore into its Indian subsidiary.

A proposal by international finance player, Goldman Sachs, was put on hold as the company wanted to make a 7 per cent investment in commodity exchange NCDEX. The reason for holding back the proposal was that an individual entity could not hold more than 5 per cent in a commodity exchange.

Among those cleared were ABG Bulk Handling, which will make downstream investment of Rs 90 crore. Telcordia Technologies, which will provide number portability solutions for telecom industry, will invest Rs 45 crore. Single brand retail trader Poltrona Frau will bring in Rs 21.50 crore. Media and entertainment player Cinema Capital Ventures Fund will pump in Rs 50 crore.

The government also cleared Astra Microwave Products’ proposal for investment in a company for manufacturing licensed defence items, which will, however, not result in any FDI inflow.

Top

 
BRIEFLY


California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) listens to Franz-Josef Paefgen, chief executive of Bentley and president of Bugatti, during his visit to the 79th Geneva Car Show at the Palexpo in Geneva on Wednesday.
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) listens to Franz-Josef Paefgen, chief executive of Bentley and president of Bugatti, during his visit to the 79th Geneva Car Show at the Palexpo in Geneva on Wednesday. — Reuters

Max New York Life plan
Chandigarh
: Max New York Life Insurance will be recruiting 7,000 agent advisors in Punjab, Haryana, J&K and Himachal Pradesh in the coming months. The private insurer will also be opening two new offices at Kangra and Solan, during this month, said Ashish Jaitly, regional manager. He said inspite of a de-growth of 6 per cent in the insurance sector, Max New York Life has grown by 42 per cent. — TNS

Auto Mall 2009
Chandigarh
: Chandigarh will be hosting an exclusive auto show, Auto Mall 2009, from March 6-8. The auto exhibition will showcase super bikes, cars and soon-to-be launched cars by auto majors like Suzuki, Maruti, Tata Motors, Skoda, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Megus Cars and Hero Honda, said Sandeep Kapoor, managing director, Relio Quick India, organiser of the show.— TNS

CII office-bearers
Chandigarh
: Anil Sehgal has been elected chairman and Atul Khosla as vice-chairman of the CII Himachal Pradesh State Council for the year 2009-10. While Sehgal is CEO, Precision Turners, Khosla is the director, plant, Gagal Cement Works, at Barmana, Bilaspur.— TNS

Top

 





HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |