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Current Affairs of International Business

By parthasaikia32 Sep 03, 2012 2529 Words
Current Affairs on International Business

The following NEWS on International Business is compiled from various sources. The source and the date is mentioned on every news. The students are expected to browse more on the same and keep a track depending on their sector specific interests.

India cuts sensitive list for SAARC NLDC (21.08.2012)
New Delhi: India has reduced the number of items in the sensitive list for SAARC's non-least developed countries (NLDCs) like Pakistan, a move which will further expand trade in goods in the region. The Cabinet yesterday approved reduction of 30 per cent or 264 such items for NLDCs that are contained under the South Asia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA)."This shall reduce India's sensitive list for Pakistan from 878 to 614 tariff lines," an official statement said today. "With this decision India has effectively performed its lead role in harmonizing the SAFTA framework and ensuring move towards a vibrant economic community and move towards normalization of trade relations with Pakistan," it said. The peak tariff rates for non-least developed nations would now be reduced to 5 per cent within three years as per agreed SAFTA process of tariff liberalization, the statement said. Shifting of items from sensitive list to general category lead to reduction in duties and boost trade. Under the SAFTA, which came into force in July 2006, India's imports are classified under two lists – the MFN list and sensitive list. India's sensitive list for least developed countries (LDC) like Bangladesh has just 25 items. And the same for non-LDC like Pakistan contains 878 commodities. The statement said India has, in the last one year, steered the trade liberalization process under the agreement so as to accelerate the pace of the process for SAFTA Economic Integration. A major step in this direction was taken in November 2011 when India unilaterally reduced its sensitive list for the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) to 25 items while allowing all other imports at zero basic customs duty." Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives and Nepal benefited as a result of this trade liberalization move," it said. Further liberalisation of trade will be discussed in next meeting of the Commerce Secretaries of India. Source:

Indian group to open business in Pakistan (21.08.2012)
Godrej, the Indian consumer goods group, plans to establish operations in Pakistan and Myanmar, in a sign of deepening trade between India and two of its largest neighbours. Adi Godrej, the billionaire head of the Godrej conglomerate, told the Financial Times that his 115-year-old group, which had revenues of Rs185bn ($3.3bn) in 2011, will begin exporting to Pakistan this year. “We will be setting up businesses before the end of the calendar year in Pakistan,” Mr Godrej said. “Pakistan is the sixth largest country in the world in terms of population, so the opportunity is reasonably good.” The move is one of the most prominent signs of increased trade between the two nuclear-armed states, and follows a wider rapprochement that included a visit by Asif Ali Zardari, Pakistan’s president, to New Delhi earlier this year. Last month, Pakistani tycoon Mian Mohammad Mansha told the FT he was looking to expand his Nishat conglomerate’s banking business into India. The move by Mr Godrej’s family-controlled group, which includes four listed entities and more than a dozen private subsidiaries with interests ranging from real estate to industrial engineering, is part of an expansion aimed at increasing revenues to $33bn over the next decade. Legal changes agreed between the two countries earlier this year allowed the export of certain products from India into Pakistan. Although direct investments are not yet permitted, Mr Godrej says he anticipates this being allowed in the near future. Godrej is the world’s largest producer of packaged hair dye, and has a number of non-listed joint ventures with prominent western businesses including Godrej Hershey with the US confectioner and Godrej Tyson with the American meat processor. Its plans to invest directly in Myanmar later this year come amid growing interest from foreign groups following economic and political reforms and the lifting of international sanctions on the south-east Asian country. “In Myanmar we are looking to establish both our agri and consumer businesses,” Mr Godrej said. Godrej Agrovet, the group’s agribusiness division, had revenues of Rs24bn in the last financial year. Large Indian industrial conglomerates, including the $83bn Tata group, are examining ways to expand their operations into Pakistan and Myanmar. Mr Godrej, who is also president of the Confederation of Indian Industry, led a delegation of more than 40 Indian business leaders on a trip to Pakistan in May as part of broader attempts to increase bilateral trade, which totalled less than $2bn last year according to figures from India’s commerce ministry. “Businessmen on both sides of the border have been very keen to find ways to explore each other’s markets, first through exports and then directly,” said Rajiv Kumar of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry. “The fact that Godrej plan to do this is a significant step forward. “India has announced that they will admit Pakistani investment and have afforded Pakistan most favoured nation (MFN) status, but Pakistan has been blowing hot and cold on this.” Source:

Forex reserves down at $288.92 bln on Aug 17: RBI (25.08.2012) (Reuters) - India's foreign exchange reserves fell to $288.92 billion as of August 17, from $289.17 billion in the previous week, the central bank said in its weekly statistical supplement on Friday. Changes in foreign currency assets, expressed in dollar terms, include the effect of appreciation or depreciation of other currencies held in its reserves, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said. Foreign exchange reserves include India's Reserve Tranche position in the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Source:

India foreign direct investment slumps 78% in June over lack of reforms(25.08.2012) NEW DELHI: Foreign direct investment in India slid by 78 per cent in June, official figures showed on Friday, amid mounting worries about corruption, bureaucratic delays and lack of economic reforms. Foreign direct investment (FDI) in June tumbled to $1.24 billion from $5.66 billion in the same month a year earlier, figures posted on India’s Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion website showed. For the financial first quarter to June, FDI tumbled year-on-year by 67 per cent to $4.43 billion, according to the department, with big drops in construction, real estate, mining, and business and financial services. Overseas investors have increasingly been giving a wide berth to the country of 1.2 billion people, until recently seen as a hot destination for foreign money.

They have been deterred by a string of graft scandals, suffocating red tape, high inflation, sharply slowing growth and the government’s inability to further open up the economy in the face of fierce political opposition. The central bank said India could help reverse the investment decline by shortening investment approval times and sorting out land acquisition issues. On Thursday, central bank governor Duvvuri Subbarao cited the example of Singapore, an investment hub, to stress the importance of doing away with cumbersome rules that deter business. “There is a need to make doing business easy by adopting models like the one in Singapore where multiple agencies/ministries sit together to quickly give a decision clearing investment projects,” he said in the bank’s annual report. However, the same day, the government postponed deciding on proposed changes to a long-awaited land acquisition legislation intended to ease the land acquisition process for industrial projects. Experts say foreign investment is vital for India, which needs to fund a $1 trillion scheme over the next five years to overhaul its dilapidated ports, airports, highways and other infrastructure seen as key to boosting growth. Among a host of stalled high-profile projects are South Korean steelmaker POSCO’s plans to build a $12-billion mill. The scheme has hung in limbo since 2005, running into trouble over land rights and environmental clearances.


India’s Madhya Pradesh state to export 1.98 lakh metric tonnes of wheat to Iran (25.08.2012) New Delhi, Aug 24, IRNA -- About two lakh metric tonnes of wheat procured in Madhya Pradesh during rabi season 2012-13 will be exported to Iran. India’s Madhya Pradesh state to export 1.98 lakh metric tonnes of wheat to Iran. The Food Corporation of India (FCI) has selected wheat stored in eight districts of state under the first phase, when 1,98,368 metric tonnes of it would be exported to Iran, pti reported quoting an official release issued in Bhopal, capital of the state, said on Friday.The selected districts are - Hoshangabad, Sehore, Vidisha, Harda, Gwalior, Bhopal, Jabalpur and Ujjain. The state government has directed concerned officers of the districts to coordinate with FCI and warehousing agencies to ensure proper upkeep of wheat meant for export. Earlier, in the month of June, two-member Iranian delegation had visited here for a week. After their field visit, they had taken samples to their country to finalise the quality issues. Suspecting a fungal disease, Iran in 1996 had banned Indian wheat. The Persian Gulf nation had suspected that Indian wheat was infested with 'Karnal bunt' -- a fungal disease.

Karnal bunt was first reported in 1931 from Karnal, Haryana. The disease primarily spreads via contaminated seeds. According to reports, India's wheat stocks at government warehouses on August 1, 2012 were 47.5 million tonnes, more than three times the official target of 17.1 million tonnes for the quarter ending September. 

Source: Zambia keen on more investments by India|
The Hindu Business Line: August 24, 2012|
Kolkata: The Republic of Zambia plans to attract Indian investments in energy, agro processing, manufacturing, construction and tourism. Investments are also invited in developing its national parks.Opportunities“There are a lot of investment opportunities in agriculture, manufacturing, energy, agro processing industries and construction of bridges and roads,” Susan Sikaneta, High Commissioner of the Republic of Zambia, told reporters here on Thursday. She was addressing an interactive session organised by city-based Indian Chamber of Commerce.The bilateral trade between Zambia and India stood at $190 million in 2011.“We would like to see the number go up by three times over the next few years,” Sikaneta said.Infrastructure developmentAccording to Sikaneta, the country has also been focusing on infrastructure development for tourism. She emphasised on developing places like South Luangwa National Park, Kafue National Park, Liuwa Plain National Park as tourist attractions.The Zambian Government is also working on creating key policies to support infrastructure development at Kasaba Bay. The country has identified 20 investment sites in the Province, located in Northern Zambia.“We need more and more investments in the cement industry as a lot of construction works are under way,” Sikaneta said.FDIStating that the country would not restrict 100 per cent foreign direct investment, she said: “We will always encourage investors to have partnerships either with the Government or any Zambian company.”A Zambian delegation including Sikaneta is likely to meet the West Bengal Commerce and Industries minister, Partha Chatterjee, on Friday.|


Dahej SEZ makes it to world's top 50 free zones|
The Times of India: August 24, 2012|
Ahmedabad: The multi-product Special Economic Zone (SEZ) at Dahej has made it to the world's top-50 'free zones'. The ranking has been granted following a survey of over 600 free zones in 120 countries by the prestigious FDI Magazine. Gujarat's minister of state for industries Saurabh Patel has said that Dahej SEZ stood 26th among the top-50 and is the only SEZ from India to have figured in the list from 24 countries for the year 2012-13. The selection was made by the jury on various parameters. He said that Dahej SEZ has achieved this for the second consecutive year. Earlier, it had figured in FDI Magazine's top-25 free zones. The Da-hej SEZ has been jointly developed by Gujarat Industrial Develop-ment Corporation (GIDC) and Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC). It is spread over 1,732 hectares and plots have been allotted to 68 units who have invested Rs.35,000-crore. About 26,500 people have been employed at the SEZ. The commercial units have exported goods worth Rs 865 crores. Dahej SEZ Ltd (DSL) is a company registered under the Companies Act, 1956 and is promoted jointly by Gujarat Industrial Develop-ment Corporation (GIDC) and Oil & Natural Gas Corporation ltd. (ONGC) for development of Special Economic Zone (SEZ). DSL is developing a multi-product SEZ at Dahej in Vagra Taluka of Bharuch district in Gujarat, India. Why Singapore Is Important ?

1. Singapore is India’s largest trading partner in ASEAN. 2. Bilateral trade post Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) in 2005 has been growing at 20% annually. 3. Between 2006-07 and 2010-11, trade has drown by 51%, and it is expected to touch $32 billion by 2015. 4. Singapore accounts for 10% of India’s total inward FDI, making it the 2nd largest investor in Indian economy. India has emerged as the 8th largest investor in Singapore. 5. Singapore is India’s gateway to ASEAN, China and APEC. Many Indian companies using Singapore as a base for operations in South East Asia.

Source: - excerpts from the speech made by CII President Adi Godrej at the meeting with Singapore PM lee Hsien Loong, in New Delhi on 11th July,2012. Accessed from Business standard, Delhi edition, 12 July 2012, P-4

Year| IIP| Export | Import| FDI|
2009-10| 10.4 %| 178.8| 288.4| 37.7|
2010-11| 8.2 %| 251.1| 369.8| 32.9|
2011-12| 2.8 %| 303.7| 303.7| 41.8|
2012-13| 0.1 (Apr)| 50.13 (Apr-May)| 79.8(Apr-May)| -| (All figures in $ billion.)
Source:- Data accessed from Financial Chronicle Weekend July 7,2010, P-5

Seminar Topics
1. FDI in India- Current Scenarios and Future Prospects.
2. Trade with Pakistan-Efforts by India.
3. India’s trade with SAARC countries.
4. Euro Zone crisis –How India is tackling the issue?
5. Political action to bring out Economic reforms in India. 6. Economic reforms and Business development in India.
7. Current export scenario ( 3 sectors and 3 products can be earmarked) 8. India’s GDP story.
9. Foreign Investment in Telecom-Success of India’s telecom sector. 10.

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