Top developments in Business – Sept. 25, 2020

The rupee strengthened by 16 paise to 73.73 against the US dollar in opening trade on Friday, tracking gains in Asian peers and positive domestic equities.

At the interbank forex market, the domestic unit opened at 73.76 against the US dollar, then gained further ground and touched 73.73, registering a rise of 16 paise over its previous close.

Join us as we follow the top business news through the day.

3:15 PM

Vodafone wins international arbitration against India in $2 bln tax dispute case – sources

Reuters reports: “Vodafone Group Plc has won an international arbitration case against the Indian government in a $2 billion retrospective tax dispute, according to two sources with direct knowledge of the matter.

The tribunal ruled that the Indian government’s imposition of a tax liability on Vodafone is in breach of the investment treaty agreement between India and the Netherlands, one of the sources said.”


Harley Davidson exit to impact around 2,000 jobs across dealerships: FADA

PTI reports: “Automobile dealer body FADA on Friday said the closure of Harley Davidson’s operations in India would lead to job loss for up to 2,000 workers across the brand’s 35 dealerships.

Harley Davidson on Thursday said it is discontinuing sales and manufacturing operations in the country.

The India action will include an associated workforce reduction of around 70 employees, it had said in a SEC filing.

The Federation of Automobile Dealers Associations (FADA) said that besides job loss, the exit of the American cult bike maker would also lead to a loss of up to 130 crore for the brand’s dealer partners in the country.


2:33 PM

Centre used GST compensation cess elsewhere, violated law: CAG

PTI reports: “The CAG has found that the Union government in the very first two years of the GST implementation wrongly retained Rs 47,272 crore of GST compensation cess that was meant to be used specifically to compensate states for loss of revenue.

In its audit report of government accounts, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) flagged that the amount was to be credited to the non-lapsable GST Compensation Cess collection fund for payment to states for loss of revenue due to implementation of GST since 2017, but the government did not do so, and thus violated the GST law.

“The GST Compensation Cess Act, 2017 provides for levy of cess for the purpose of providing compensation to the states for loss of revenue arising due to implementation of GST for a period specified in the Act,” CAG said.

As per the Act and the accounting procedure, the entire cess collected during the year is required to be credited to a non-lapsable Fund (the GST Compensation Cess Fund) which shall form part of the Public Account and shall be used for the purpose mentioned i.e., for providing compensation to states for loss of revenue.”


2:00 PM

ACC approves restructuring of SAIL’s board

PTI reports: “The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved the restructuring of SAIL’s board, the steel ministry said in a statement on Friday. The restructuring of the board will bring in greater efficiency, and decentralisation in the company, it said.

“The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the restructuring of the board of SAIL. The 4 posts of CEOs of SAIL’s integrated steel plants are to be elevated as functional directors by designating them as directors-in-charge of Bokaro, Rourkela, Bhilai and one director-in-charge jointly for Burnpur and Durgapur steel plants,” the statement said.

The restructuring also involves merging the functions and duties of the post of Director (Raw Materials and Logistics) and that of Director (Projects, and Business Planning) with the post of Director (Technical) and its consequent re-designation as Director (Technical, Projects and Raw Materials).”

1:20 PM

Dr Reddy’s launches generic drug in US market

PTI reports: “Drug major Dr Reddy’s Laboratories on Friday said it has launched generic version of Precedex injection, used for sedation purposes in patients, in the US market.

The Hyderabad-based company’s Dexmedetomidine Hydrochloride in 0.9 per cent Sodium Chloride injection is the generic version of Hospira Inc’s Precedex injection.

“We are pleased to bring this important generic product to market, making it affordable – and readily available – for patients,” Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Chief Executive Officer North America Generics Marc Kikuchi said in a statement.

According to IQVIA Health, the Precedex in 0.9 per cent Sodium Chloride injection brand and the generic market had US sales of around USD 210 million for the most recent twelve months ended June 2020.”

1:00 PM

Google Pay doesn’t share customer transaction data with any 3rd party outside payments flow: Google

PTI reports: “Google on Friday said Google Pay does not share customer transaction data with any third party outside the payments flow.

The clarification from Google came after reports cited the company’s submission to the Delhi High Court saying it is allowed to share customers transaction data with third parties with the prior permission of NPCI and payment service providing (PSP) banks.

“This is to clarify that press reports on the basis of the affidavit filed by Google before the Delhi High Court, do not represent the complete facts,” a Google spokesperson said on Friday.”


12:10 PM

Govt sanctions 670 electric buses, 241 charging stations under FAME scheme

PTI reports: “The government on Friday said it has sanctioned 670 electric buses for Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat and Chandigarh and 241 charging stations in Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Gujarat and Port Blair under Phase-II of the FAME India Scheme.

Union Heavy Industries minister Prakash Javadekar said the decision reflects the Centre’s commitment to reduce dependence on fossil fuel and address the issues of vehicular emissions, and is in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision for eco-friendly public transportation.

“This is a good start, these e-buses, e-rickshaws and e-scooties as well as e-cars for city use are the best way forward for environment friendly transport,” Javadekar said.”

11:02 AM

Cipla gets final nod from USFDA for multiple sclerosis drug

PTI reports: “Drug major Cipla on Friday said it has received final approval from the US health regulator for Dimethyl Fumarate capsules, indicated for the treatment of relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis.

The newly approved product is a generic therapeutic equivalent version of Biogen IDEC Inc’s Tecfidera.

Quoting IQVIA (IMS Health) data, Cipla said Tecfidera had US sales of approximately USD 3.8 billion for the 12-month period ending July 2020.

Shares of Cipla were trading 2.12 per cent higher at Rs 748.35 apiece on the BSE.”

10:50 AM

GMR Infra to sell stake in Kakinada SEZ to Aurobindo Realty for ₹2,610 cr.s

GMR Infrastructure is selling its entire 51% stake in Kakinada SEZ (KSEZ) to Aurobindo Realty and Infrastructure (ARIPL), in a ₹2,610 crore deal.

Definitive agreements for the sale of the equity by wholly-owned subsidiary GMR SEZ and Port Holding (GSPHL) have been signed, GMR Infrastructure said.

As part of the proposed stake sale in KSEZ, the 100% equity of Kakinada Gateway Port (KGPL) held by KSEZ would also be transferred to Aurobindo Realty.

Total consideration for the sale of equity stake as well as the sub-debt in KSEZ is₹2,610 crore. Of this, ₹1,600 crore would be received on the closing date and balance ₹1,010 crore in next 2 to 3 years contingent upon certain agreed milestones.

The sale transaction will be subject to receipt of regulatory and other statutory approvals. The proceeds will be used to reduce debt of GMR Group. — N.Ravi Kumar

10:00 AM

Sensex climbs nearly 400 points in early trade; Nifty above 10,900

Equity benchmark Sensex opened on a strong note and surged nearly 400 points in early trade on Friday as investor sentiments improved amid positive leads from Asian markets and overnight gains on the Wall Street.

The 30-share index was trading 395.08 points or 1.08 per cent higher at 36,948.68, and the NSE Nifty climbed 121.50 points or 1.12 per cent to 10,927.05.

All Sensex components were trading higher with IndusInd Bank, M&M, TCS, Bajaj Finance, Bharti Airtel, Sun Pharma, Maruti, Tata Steel and Axis Bank gaining up to 3.22 per cent. — PTI






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