• Bidding for the acquisition of Emami Cement is likely to commence by mid-January with the Aditya Birla Group’s UltraTech Cement leading the race at an offer price of Rs 6,500-7,000 crore in an all-cash deal, sources said.
  • Though Shree Cement, Dalmia Bharat Cement, Nuvoco, and other private equity investors had shown initial interest, sources said UltraTech and Ambuja Cement, part of the LafargeHolcim Group, were likely to put in their bids.
  • The major global challenges of climate change and financial crises can be solved only if countries agree to cooperate with each other and resist isolationism, economist and Nobel laureate Eric Stark Maskin said.
  • However, he added that global collaboration will not be easy as more and more nations turn inward-looking.
  • Maskin has asked to come together globally and devise an international treaty. Countries may be willing to sign an international treaty in which they promise to reduce their carbon emissions to a safe level.
  • To reduce carbon emissions, countries must take steps like using new technology as well as shutting down old factories, which will have a negative impact on their economies, he added,
  • Private power producers have alleged that upcoming coal auctions for stressed power plants is an attempt by Coal India to maximise profits as a state monopoly by exploiting the plight of fuel-starved projects.
  • Pressure from lenders and desperation for coal may force stressed projects to make aggressive bids at the coal auctions, they said. Also, there are high chances of these projects losing bank guarantees if there is no demand from discoms in two years, power producers said.
  • Responding to cost pressure and greater demand, domestic steel producers have raised prices by Rs 1,000-1,500 a tonne across products for January.
  • Iron ore miners have increased prices by Rs 600 per tonne and so this increases the cost of production by Rs 1,000 a tonne. Hence, steel producers have hiked prices, V R Sharma, managing director, Jindal Steel & Power (JSPL), told. With this, domestic steel players have raised prices for the fourth consecutive month in a market in which consumption is expected to pick up after the government announced a mega push for infrastructure projects.
  • Coal India posted the first decline in annual shipments in at least six years as demand from power producers weakened and its production was hit by heavy rains earlier in 2019. Shipments fell 3.8% in 2019 from a year ago to 580.8 million tonnes, according to Bloomberg calculations.
  • According to CIL, on a monthly basis, shipments rose 1.9% in December from last year to 53.63 million tons. Output climbed 7.2% to 58.02 million tonnes