Business Current Affairs

GLA Class Launched by Mercedes Benz in India

Mercedes Benz has launched GLA Class in India, which is expected to compete with the leading vehicles such as Volvo V40, Land Rover Evoque, Audi Q3, and BMW X1. Ex-showroom price of this vehicle in Delhi is between Rs 32.75 lakh and Rs 36.9 lakh. As per Eberhard Kern, Managing Director and CEO of Mercedes-Benz India, the SUV segment is becoming very popular in India. 

RBI keeps Repo Rate Unchanged; Estimates Higher Growth Rate for 2015-16 Fiscal

RBI Governor keeps repo rate under Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF) unchanged at 8 per cent during its 4th bi-monthly monetary policy. Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) of Net Demand Time Liabilities (NDTL) for scheduled banks was kept unchanged at 4 per cent. During the current fiscal year, RBI’s estimated growth rate of Indian economy is 5.5 per cent. However, during 2015-16, the growth rate is expected to increase to 6.3 per cent.

Energy Sector to get $1 billion of Investment from the US

India is awaiting investments to the tune of $1 billion in the Energy Sector from the US companies. It is one of the sectors that is going to gain the maximum from Narendra Modi’s US visit. Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency is going to sign an agreement with US Exim Bank for financing sourcing of components from Indian renewable power project developers from the United States. Financing will take place over a time period of 18 years.

Microsoft announces 3 Data Centres for India

During his visit to India, Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella announced setting up of three local data centres in India. They will be operational by 2015-end and provide cloud services from its Azure and Office 365 stack to local business and government clients. 

Modi Stresses upon five aspects during Madison Square Garden Speech

Before a 20,000-strong crowd at New York’s Madison Square Garden, Narendra Modi stressed on five aspects during his speech: making development a movement; 3D strategy of Demand, Demographic Dividend, and Democracy; skill development and Make in India; commitment to clean-up Ganga; and unifying two schemes - Person of Indian Origin (PIO) and Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) – to help US nationals get long term visas.

Amazon has Big Plans for India

CEO and Founder of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, has said that Indian market has surpassed all the expectations of the company as it sold over Rs 6,000 crore or $1 billion worth goods during one year of operation in India. He wants to pump in more investment in India’s booming eCommerce market (travel excluded), which is expected to reach $22 billion in coming five years. Amazon will explore business opportunities in 35 million SMEs of India. 

Inflation is still high, RBI is unlikely to cut interest rates

It is expected that the Reserve Bank of India will not cut the interest rate in its upcoming monetary policy review this week as retail inflation continues to be very high. On September 30 the RBI is going to disclose its fourth bi-monthly policy. The Central Bank bank is monitoring consumer price index (CPI) very closely. CPI has been showing a declining trend for the past few months but still out of comfort zone. Also some ease has been noticed in the wholesale price index (WPI). But as per bank experts it is not the right time for rate cut.

Rs 1,200 invested to revamp pump stations in Assam – Oil India

Oil India announced an investment of Rs 1,200 for revamping the pump stations of pipelines that carry crude oil to refineries in Assam. As per media report OIL Chairman and Managing Director S K Srivastava said this while addressing the shareholders during the 55th Annual General Body Meeting at the company's Fields' Headquarters in Duliajan. The pumping stations to undergo revamping have been working for more than five decades.

Look East and Link West policy of Narendra Modi

While launching ‘Make in India’ campaign, Indian PM Narendra Modi has emphasised upon the need of implementing the policy of ‘Look East’ while linking to the West. He made this statement to emphasise why his government has engaged with leaders of Asia-Pacific region before visiting the US to mend Indo-US ties. India has met the leaders of China, Japan, Vietnam, Singapore, Myanmar, and Australia in the last few months.

Indian PM's Digital India Pitch Starts Yielding Result

After Narendra Modi’s "i-ways for a Digital India" pitch and inviting top industry leaders to seize the initiative, Indian born Microsoft’s CEO Sathya Nadella has offered a partnership deal with industry as well as government for accelerating the growth of India. A week back, it was Google who announced partnership with the government for developing ‘Digital India’ initiative.

China comes with its 'Made in China' Campaign after India's 'Make in India'

The Chinese government is all set to retain its manufacturing prowess. After Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched ‘Make in India’ campaign before going to a US trip, China launched its ‘Made in China’ campaign by announcing a slew of tax concessions. The Chinese government has decided to upgrade ‘Made in China’ effort by encouraging R&D and high-tech imports.

S&P Upgrades Outlook, Rating Remains BBB-

At a time when Indian PM Narendra Modi is starting his US tour, India got a huge sentiment booster from S&P credit rating company. S&P upgraded India's credit outlook from ‘negative’ to ‘stable’. However, the rating remains BBB-. The outlook was revised on the basis of rating agency’s outlook on the new government’s ability to implement economic and fiscal reform. S&P expects that the new government can achieve the fiscal consolidation path.

Gas Price Rise Decision Deferred by 45 Days

The decision for gas price rise has been deferred till November 15, 2014 by the Union Government. Political analysts say that it could have been done keeping in mind the Assembly Elections on October 15, 2014 in Haryana and Maharashtra. Since May, NDA government has deferred the decision of gas price hike for the second time.    

Four Reform Bills of Rajasthan Stride Ahead

Four reform bills passed by the Rajasthan Assembly have been approved by the Union Labour Ministry. These bills will now go to Home Ministry for approval. The four bills that were passed on July 31, 2014 by the Rajasthan Assembly include Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, Apprenticeship Act, Industrial Disputes Act, and Factories Act. There will be no problems of receiving Presidential assent if the Home Ministry approves the bills.

Forbes' Billionaire List of India – Mukesh No.1, Gauram Adani Biggest Gainer

India houses one hundred billionaires and the top rank in the list has been retained by Mukesh Ambani of Reliance Industries Limited. The second and third positions are adorned by Dilip Sanghvi, Managing Director and Founder of Sun Pharmaceuticals, and Azim Premji of Wipro Limited, respectively. Gautam Adani has amassed $7.1 billion to rank at number 11 in the Indian Billionaire list of Forbes. He is the biggest gainer, who added $4.5 billion in the last one year.

360-degree Feedback Mechanism Suggested by RBI Committee

The RBI panel report has suggested that 360-degree feedback mechanism is very important for employees of NBFCs and Banks so that differentiation can be made in the actual performance of different employees. This is important for comprehensive and transparent performance assessment exercise. The concerned committee also suggested creation of Chief Learning Officer in commercial banks. One of the main tasks of CLO would be to create ‘learnability index’ for every individual on the basis of their ability to learn. This input will come handy in case of judging ‘promotability’ of employees.

Committee formed for Restructuring Railway Board

Indian Railways has set up a committee to steer the restructuring of Railway Board. This committee will be headed by professor and economist at the Centre for Policy Research, Bibek Debroy. Railway Minister Sadanand Gowda announced the Railway Board reform three months back in his Railway Budget speech. The two main objectives of this committee are suggesting ways of doing away with political interference in the field and rationalise rates. Though similar committees were formed earlier too under Sam Pitroda and Rakesh Mohan, implementation  of the recommendations was very poor.

SC terms 214 Coal Blocks Illegal

The Supreme Court today cancelled 214 coal blocks out of a total of 218 blocks. The ones in joint venture with government run blocks including SAIL and NTPC have been exempted. The apex court observed that the allocations in case of the 214 illegal coals blocks were done in an arbitrary manner.  Sensex today shed 100 points after the SC verdict.

Narendra Modi to have One-to-One Meeting with 6 MNC CEOs during his US Visit

Indian PM is expected to meet heads of seventeen big corporations  of the world when he visits US at the end of September 2014. Some of the CEOs of MNCs he is reported to meet include Pepsi, MasterCard, Goldman Sachs, IBM, Boeing, Google, and many more. The visitors’ list has been revealed by the Ministry of External Affairs recently. The meetings  are expected to be fruitful and hold significance for Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ campaign.

Power of Drug Pricing Authority withdrawn on Non-Essential Drugs

Price caps were implemented for 100 non-essential drugs through a guideline issued by the Department of Pharmaceuticals, which is under the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, on May 29. This decision received strong resistance from the pharmaceutical industry.  However, the guidelines have been withdrawn and from now on National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) will not be able to impose drug prices not in the list of essential medicines.

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