• Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said ‘periodic changes’ in GST rates should be avoided and hinted at the need for a rate rationalisation exercise to be undertaken once a year. Periodic changes in rates bring about uncertainty both for the industry and the government. Currently, the review of rates takes place once every three months at the GST Council meeting.
  • Granting relief to lenders and real estate developers, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on allowed a one-year extension of the date of commencement of commercial operations (DCCO) for project loans, which are delayed for reasons beyond the promoters’ control. However, some analysts think the measures will only provide “marginal relief” to cash-strapped realty firms.
  • The growth of India’s gross domestic product (GDP) has declined largely due to low growth in manufacturing and construction, government has informed Parliament. According to Minister of state (independent charge) for statistics and programme implementation Rao Inderjit Singh, the growth of GDP has declined largely due to low growth in manufacturing and construction sector.
  • The National Statistics Office has forecast India’s GDP growth to slip to an 11-year low of 5% in FY20. Manufacturing growth in 2019-20 is seen at 2% year on year, which is a 15-year low, as against 6.9% growth in FY19. Construction growth is seen slipping to a six-year low of 3.2% in FY20 from 8.7% in the last fiscal.
  • JSW Steel is closely watching all the upcoming iron ore mine auctions, as the company is in the final stages to acquire land in Odisha for a proposed greenfield project, a top executive said.
  • Renewable energy sources are expected to account for around 21% of electricity demand in 2021-22, Power Minister R K Singh said.
  • “As per Central Electricity Authority‘s National Electricity Plan, contribution of renewable energy sources is estimated to be around 21 per cent of the total electricity demand of the country in the year 2021-22 and 24 per cent by 2026-27,” Singh was quoted as saying in a statement issued by the power ministry.
  • French oil and gas group, Total, said it has signed a deal with Adani Group to acquire a 50 per cent stake in its solar power projects joint venture (JV).