Shapoorji Pallonji group, an infrastructure and construction company, recently bagged three smart city projects at Varanasi, Bengaluru and Eluru. It plans to offer the following facilities:

  • city surveillance and traffic management system, which will aid the local police in managing traffic in the city;
  • replacement of street lights with LEDs to save energy cost;
  • help to create employment and social impact;
  • undertake measures for regular water supply, waste water management, flood management, smart grid & energy management, affordable housing, smart solid waste, safety & security and city beautification

The Company is looking to raise ~850 crore for the Bengaluru and Eluru projects via debt route, thereby approaching multiple lenders.

 

 

 

 

As per the statistics in February 2019, inflation can be seen on a rise at both wholesale and retail level. This is on account of firming up of prices of primary food items, including vegetables and cereals. The Consumer Price Index also indicates that the retail inflation has shown a four-month-high level, due to costlier food articles.

All eyes are now on the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) Monetary Policy Committee meeting scheduled to be held in April wherein monthly monetary policy review of the next fiscal shall be undertaken, at a time when growth rate of industrial production is slowing and inflation inching up.

Coal India, under Shakti B(ii) scheme is proposing to conduct another (third) round of bid for giving out long term fuel supply contracts. This is a result of the protest from participants who could not secure their total coal requirements in the previous rounds of bid.

 

Shakti B(ii) is a one-time process that provides long term fuel supply to power producers who have power purchase agreements with dis-coms, but do not have coal supply contracts with Coal India.

 

Rahul Gandhi, Congress president, at a news conference in Chennai and a poll rally in Nagercoil, highlighted the Congress Lok Sabha election agenda as under:

  • 33 per cent reservation for women in all government jobs;
  • reforms in the Goods and Services Tax(GST);
  • unemployment and farmers distress as the key area for improvement;

Further, he expressed his views on the pricing mechanism under the highly controversial Rafale deal.

On March 13, 2019 (Wednesday), the Indian rupee gained 17 paisa against US dollar to close at 69.5387 on account of the investment in the Indian market by foreign investors who are swayed by:

  • unlikely increase in the interest rates by RBI;
  • increasing risk appetite; and
  • return of the NDA led Government at power

However, rupee continues to have a core negative flow across a large current account deficit and net FDI. One may still predict gain in Indian rupee up to upcoming elections.

In the wake of shutdown of string of mines by world’s largest iron ore miner, Brazil based Vale, countries like China are witnessing global level supply issues. As a result, even inferior grade iron ore at mine heads in Odisha and Jharkhand are getting exported. This might seem a temporary phenomenon but it will help in the following ways:

  • liquidate the enormous inventory in Odisha and Jharkhand for which there are no takers in the domestic market; and
  • spur exports since shipping higher grade attracted export tax @30% which is not the case with lower grade iron ore

Recently, MMTC Ltd has floated tenders for exports of lower grade iron ore to be shipped through the ports of Paradip, Gopalpur, Haldia and Visakhapatnam.