The Oil Ministry may seek the opinion of Solicitor General for India on whether Reliance Industries (RIL) and Cairn India can be permitted to drill exploration wells in already producing oil and gas fields. The Ministry is contemplating asking Solicitor General Robinton Nariman for an opinion on if the contracts of RIL and Cairn or the mining lease given to them for producing oil and gas, permits drilling of exploratory wells. The Oil Ministry was in favour of granting permission to drill exploration wells within an oil and gas field, but with the condition that cost recovery of such wells would be allowed only in case there is a commercially exploitable discovery. This essentially meant that cost for drilling any well that did not lead to a discovery or a small find that could not be independently produced, will not be allowed. At present, operators get to recover all their cost -- whether successful or failed wells, from the oil and gas produced and sold from that particular block.
Gas transmission firm GAIL (India) is not in favour of letting go its first right to buy the Asian Development Bank's 5.2 percent stake in Petronet LNG. GAIL and three other state-run organizations - Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, Indian Oil Corporation and Bharat Petroleum Corporation - are the promoters of Petronet LNG, holding 12.5 percent stake each. France's GDF International (GDFI), a wholly owned subsidiary of Gaz de France, holds 10 percent. The remaining equity, 34.8 percent, is held by the public. Besides, GAIL aims to buy 25 spot cargoes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in 2013, up from 16-17 this year. GAIL will get the first cargo to start its Dabhol LNG terminal from Gazprom this month. The start of the 5 million tonnes a year terminal has seen repeated delays. With gas demand expected to grow at 14 percent in the next five years, Asia's third-largest economy is scouting for long-term LNG contracts, and aims to increase its LNG handling capacity to 50 million tonnes a year by 2017 from 13.5 million tonnes now.
BGR Energy Systems has received the notification of award for steam turbine and Generators for NTPC's Lara 2x800 MW super Thermal Power Project in state of Chhattisgarh. The order is valued at Rs 1548 crore comprising $210 Million, Euro 16 Million Rs 281 crore. The contact Provides for price variation for price variation and foreign exchange variation risk protection. As on date the order book of the company is at Rs 140,077 crore. Earlier this year on February 29, 2012 BGR Energy System emerged as the lowest bidder in the NTPC bulk tender for supply 11 x 660 /mw supercritical Boilers. BGR Energy Systems is engaged in supplying of systems and equipment and contracting turnkey engineering project. The company started as a joint venture between GEA Energietechnik GmbH, Germany and the promoter B G Raghupathy in order to produce and sell on-line condenser tube cleaning systems, debris filters and rubber cleaning balls used in thermal and nuclear power plants.
Chennai-based Hatsun Agro Products has lined up Rs 160 crore investment to set up two new plants and other related expansion activities over the next one year. It has nine plants in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The proposed two plants would come up in south of Tamil Nadu. However, the location has not been finalized. The company is also planning to set up a plant to produce 50,000 litres of curd per day by February 2013. It would add to the existing capacity of 70,000 litres and take the total daily output to 120,000 litres of curd. It sells liquid milk under the Arokya brand and a range of milk-based products under the brand Hatsun in south India. It also sells ice-creams under Arun and Ibaco brand.
Pharma major, Lupin's subsidiary, Lupin Pharmaceuticals Inc (collectively Lupin) has received final approval for its Drospirenone and Ethinyl Estradiol Tablets, 3 mg / 0.03 mg from the United States Food and Drugs Administration (USFDA) to market a generic version of Bayer Healthcare's (Bayer) Yasmin Tablets 3 mg / 0.03 mg. As per IMS MAT Sept 2012 sales, Yasmin Tablets had annual US sales of approximately $275.1 million. Lupin's Drospirenone and Ethinyl Estradiol Tablets are the AB rated generic equivalent of Bayer's Yasmin Tablets 3 mg / 0.03 mg. Lupin's Drospirenone and Ethinyl Estradiol Tablets are a combined oral contraceptive indicated for the prevention of pregnancy in women who elect to use oral contraceptives as a method of contraception. Lupin will be marketing its Drospirenone and Ethinyl Estradiol Tablets USP in a wallet pack of 28 tablets consisting of 21 yellow active tablets, each containing 3 mg Drospirenone and 0.03 mg Ethinyl Estradiol, and 7 white inert tablets.
Maruti Suzuki, India's largest car manufacturer is exploring a foray into India's fast growing small commercial vehicle space. The segment is currently dominated by Tata Motors' Ace with over 50% market share. Though the Japanese carmaker had the Omni Van, used as a cargo vehicle, it did not have a competitive offering in the load-carrier segment, due to the absence of a small diesel engine. But with the development of company's two-cylinder, 800 cc, diesel engine for the passenger car shifting to India, it is actively exploring options to use the potential workhorse to enter the small pick up truck market.
Telecom operator Tata Teleservices (TTL) through its subsidiary MMP Mobi Wallet Payment Systems has tied up with ICICI Bank for money transfer service. Under this service, people can deposit money in ICICI Bank account through MMP retail stores. The customers can walk into a retail store of MMP to deposit cash along with an advice giving details of the account of the payee. This money will then be transferred to the bank account of the payee using currently available electronic fund transfer mechanisms such as NEFT, IMPS etc. MMP will act as a business correspondent for ICICI Bank for this service, which will allow customers to transfer money for a nominal fee without opening an account. The money transfer service will be launched in Mumbai and Delhi to begin with and then in other parts of the country later on.
India's premier international airline, Jet Airways has increased the fees on excess baggage to encourage flyers to travel light. It has decided to hike the charge on excess baggage from Rs 200 to Rs 250 on each additional kg. The company has taken this initiative to discourage passengers from carrying excess luggage, as lighter the aircraft the lesser is the fuel burn. On an average, passengers carry about 13 kgs of luggage and the increase in fees will not impact them. Besides, SpiceJet, the Sun group-promoted budget airline company, has increased the fees on excess baggage to encourage flyers to travel light. It has decided to hike the charge on excess baggage from Rs 200 to Rs 250 on each additional kg. The company has taken this initiative to discourage passengers from carrying excess luggage, as lighter the aircraft the lesser is the fuel burn. On an average, passengers carry about 13 kgs of luggage and the increase in fees will not impact them.
The Maharashtra government has ordered an inquiry against Torrent Power, a distribution franchisee of the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company (MahaVitaran) in the power loom town of Bhiwandi. A committee expected to be led by a MahaVitaran senior is to probe alleged excess recovery from consumers, fast running of power meters, accidents and deaths due to system faults. This is the first inquiry by the state government since Torrent began as distribution franchisee for the Bhiwandi circle in January 2007. Since then, the company has invested a little over Rs 500 crore for systems improvement, reducing aggregate transmission and commercial and distribution losses, and improving metering efficiency.
Jayashree Chemicals, an S K Bangur Group firm and the only caustic soda manufacturing plant in Odisha, is staring at closure, with an accumulated loss of over Rs 15 crore. The company's plant at Ganjam in south Odisha, is facing a serious financial crisis weighed on by escalating input cost and hike in power tariff that accounts for nearly 65 percent of its production cost. Burdened by the steep hike in power tariff, Jayashree Chemicals had sought exemption of electricity duty for 10 years. The hike in power tariff had nullified the reduction in power consumption which the company had achieved through installation of membrane cell technology. The state government is, however, yet to take a call on electricity duty waiver proposal.