General

India raises trade deficit issue with China at WTO

India has flagged concerns of its large trade deficit with China, visa restrictions for Indian professionals and the challenges faced in exporting IT services, meat, rice and medicines to Beijing at the World Trade Organization (WTO). Trade is skewed in favour of China at a trade surplus of $63 billion. Bilateral trade was $89.6 billion in 2017-18.  “This large and growing deficit is difficult for India to sustain, and serious efforts need to be made to remedy the situation,” India said in its submission to WTO, commenting on China’s trade policy, which EThas seen. Citing complex requirements for participating in contracts of Chinese state-owned enterprises (SOE) and issues related to qualification requirements, licensing and taxation, Delhi has sought transparency in export of agriculture products including bovine meat and providing services such as IT. “Indian professionals are facing visas restrictions like permits being granted only for a year,” it said. 
(ET, July 16, 2018)


Great things are going to happen in Goa: Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad

The Goa IT Day held in Panjim over the weekend has shown the State, famous for its tourism industry, in a new light: as the next IT destination of India. Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minister for Electronics, IT, Law and Justice, was in Panjim to launch Goa's IT Policy and Schemes along with Goa Chief Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar and Shri Rohan Khaunte, Minister for IT, Revenue, Law & Employment. The Union Minister spoke to the audience about Goa’s potential future beyond tourism and hospitality. He also pledged support for their initiatives. Praising the Goa government’s IT policy and calling it extraordinary and well-thought-out, Shri Prasad promised that the Central government will help make Goa a centre for IT initiatives. He also assured that Goa would have an NIELIT (National Institute of Electronics & Information Technology) centre soon for super digital scaling. “Just give us the land; we will take care of the rest,” he told the State government dignitaries at the dais.

(Your Story, July 15, 2018)


Electronics import bill is a growing concern for Indian policy makers

Rising disposable incomes mean that India's demand for electronics is soaring, but the country needs to manufacture more goods within the country to reduce import costs and boost the economy, analysts say. “While the government is taking steps to boost electronics production, one needs to see how quickly it ramps up - else given its size, which is now close to the oil deficit, it may be emerging as the ‘new oil’ for India,” says Kapil Gupta, an economist at Edelweiss, a financial services firm headquartered in Mumbai. Manufacturing of electronic good in India is still relatively low and imports of electronic items are a burden on the country's trade deficit. A study by lobby group Assocham reveals that India would need to import $300 billion of electronic products, including televisions and smartphones, by 2020 to meet demand, which is growing at a rate of more than 40 per cent a year.

(The National, July 15, 2018)


Global Small Electric Motors Market 2018 Ind. Production, Supply, Sales & Demand Market Research Report

Worldwide Small Electric Motors Market 2018 Production, Supply, Sales, and Demand on Small Electric Motors Market Research Report is in-depth research report on Small Electric Motors. From two aspects: production and sales, the “Global Small Electric Motors Market 2018” report provides detailed information of production, supply, sales, demand, price, cost, income and revenue on Small Electric Motors in the US, EU, China, Japan and rest of the world. In terms of production: the “Global Small Electric Motors Market 2018” report gives ex-factory price, cost, production value, and gross margin etc. of different types of Small Electric Motors produced in different regions and different manufacturers. In terms of sales:- the “Global Small Electric Motors Market 2018” report gives sales volume, sales price, cost, sales income, and profit margin etc. of Small Electric Motors used in different fields, sold in different regions and by different companies related to Small Electric Motors.

(Chronicle India, July 14, 2018)


Automotive Cockpit Electronics Market Share, Growth, Trend Analysis And Forecast From 2017-2022; Consumption Capacity By Volume And Production Value

The Automotive Cockpit Electronics Market Research Report is a highly diligent Report on competitive landscape analysis, prime manufacturers, marketing strategies analysis, Market Effect Factor Analysis and Consumer Needs by major regions, types, applications in United States market considering the past, current and future state of the Automotive Cockpit Electronics industry. The report provides a thorough overview of the Automotive Cockpit Electronics market including definitions, classifications, applications and chain structure.

(Stock Analysis, July 14, 2018)


Andhra Pradesh tops the list in ease of doing business among all states and UTs

Second year in a row, Andhra Pradesh outperformed 28 other states and seven union territories (UTs) to be the best in India to do business in, showed rankings released by the government.

The third edition of the annual ranking of all states and UTs under the Business Reform Action Plan (BRAP) conducted by the industry department and the World Bank showed Telangana and Haryana in second and third spots, while Meghalaya stood last at 36th position. 
The ranking is based on 372 action points or reforms undertaken to ease regulation and systems in construction permit, labour regulation, environmental registration, access to information, land availability, and single window system. It is aimed at triggering competition among states to attract investments and improve business climate. 

(ET, July 11, 2018)


57% Indian cos have privacy team, rest work with little oversight: Deloitte

As the European data protection laws kicked in on May 25, a large number of Indian firms have been caught off guard as they scramble to ensure compliance to strict provisions of the regulations termed General Data Protection Regime (GDPR), a study by Deloitte and Data Security Council of India found.

(BS, July 11, 2018)


India's unofficial recycling bin: the city where electronics go to die

rom the road one could see locals washing the ash from burned e-waste and using sieves to recover fragments of metal. Women and children broke apart and segregated the printed circuit board components, prying open the object and separating the gold, silver and copper-plated components.

Locals in Moradabad in western Uttar Pradesh described [to us] the process of recycling this hazardous material. Once the basic dismantling and separation were achieved, different methods of extraction followed: typically burning, grinding, washing and bathing in acid. The city of Moradabad, home to 900,000 people, was once celebrated as the brass capital of India. Now it is notorious as a centre for e-waste processing, an industry built on the declining fortunes of its famed brassware sector.

(The Guardian, July 09, 2018)


Consumer Electronic Accessories Market Overview – Key Futuristic Trends and Competitive Landscape 2023

HTF MI comprehensive and detailed 122-page research study on Global Consumer Electronic Accessories provides a significantly expanded scope with deeply analyzed conclusions and content that includes an industry relevant database of major existing Consumer Electronic Accessories manufacturers/players in each region, analysis of 11 leading national markets, important regions [North America, United States, Canada, Mexico, Asia-Pacific, China, India, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Indonesia, Singapore, Rest of Asia-Pacific, Europe, Germany, France, UK, Italy, Spain, Russia, Rest of Europe, Central & South America, Brazil, Argentina, Rest of South America, Middle East & Africa, Saudi Arabia, Turkey & Rest of Middle East & Africa], a description of major geopolitical trends, analysis of the influencing factors and regulatory policies leading to the volatile dynamics.

 (Business Tactics, June 15, 2018)


Samsung aims for 10 per cent increase in TV market share:

India’s biggest television brand Samsung expects a 10% increase in its local market share by the festival season, harnessing demand for premium and larger sets and its expanding geographic footprint to outflank competition in a crowded industry.   The FIFA World Cup, followed by the pre-Diwali shopping, should help the South Korean electronics giant enhance its share from 30% to 33% before India’s busy shopping season kicks off in October, senior vice president for consumer electronics Raju Pullan said. 

(ET, June 15, 2018)


Xiaomi & Dixon Tech join hands for Make-in-India 'Mi' TV launch in August, to make 55K sets every month

India’s biggest smartphone maker Xiaomi has partnered homegrown consumer electronics contract manufacturer Dixon Technologies to make about 55,000 television sets locally every month, two senior industry executives told ET.

Xiaomi’s deal with Dixon will likely ensure an August launch for the Make-in-India ‘Mi’ brand of televisions, the local production of which should begin next month at Dixon’s new Tirupati plant. The Chinese firm will make the 32- and 43-inch sets through this arrangement which may later be expanded to newer models, the executives said.

Xiaomi’s deal with Taiwanese contract manufacturer Foxconn to further expand TV production locally is also in the offing, as ET reported last month, since the Chinese company wants to ensure local output for more than 90% of the television sets it sells in India. Foxconn is likely to manufacture the 55-inch and above models at its Chennai facility that also produces sets for Sony.

(ET, June 11, 2018)


IIT Khargpur along with TU Munich set up a research center on Intelligent transportation system

IIT Kharagpur and the Technical University of Munich from Germany have entered into a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for setting up an Indo-German Collaborative Research Center on Intelligent Transportation Systems. The Center will be located at IIT Kharagpur with the possibility of a similar center being replicated in Germany in the future. The goal of this Center will be to bring together Indian and German researchers, as well as industry partners from the two countries to work on various topics in the domain of transportation. These include next-generation cars where most of the innovation is in electronics and software, to environmentally friendly green transportation options and seamless connectivity between various modes of transportation. 

(ET, June 27, 2018)


Panasonic finally breaks even in India

 Panasonic IndiaNSE 6.63 %, the flagship company of Japanese electronics maker Panasonic in the country, broke even in 2016-17, posting Rs 72.2 crore net profit as per its latest regulatory filings with the Registrar of Companies (RoC). 

The company’s consumer electronics, home appliances and automotive businesses turned profitable in the fiscal, leading to overall profitability in its ninth year of operation after making a re-entry into the Indian market.  Panasonic India had recorded net loss of Rs 42 crore in the previous year.  In FY17, its total income grew 14.4% year on year to Rs 5,589.9 crore, driven by television and white goods business that contributed Rs 4,997.1 crore. 

(ET, June 22, 2018)


Global Silicone in Electrical and Electronics Market 2018: Industry Outlook and Trend Analysis

This statistical surveying analysis report on the Global Silicone in Electrical and Electronics Market 2018 to 2023 is a complete study of the industry sectors, up-to-date outlines, business development, drivers, and restraints. It provides market predictions for the upcoming years. It contains an analysis recently developments in modernization, Porter’s five forces analysis and progressive aspects of elected business rivals. The Silicone in Electrical and Electronics report, what is more, articulates a study of small and full-scale factors indicated for the new and established competitors within the market beside an authorized worth chain investigation.

This report presents a 360-Degree Overview of the competitive state of affairs of the Silicone in Electrical and Electronics Industry. The report additional comes to the size and valuation of the Worldwide market within the coming back forecast period. The Silicone in Electrical and Electronics report also presents an intensive quantitative and qualitative knowledge leading the projected result of those factors on market’s future growth possibilities.

(The Honest Analytics, June 22, 2018)


L&T opposes plan to give submarine project to Mazagon Dock

With the government considering a proposal to move a Rs 60,000-crore project to build submarines to the public sector on a nomination basis, India’s top shipbuilder Larsen and Toubro has sought the Niti Aayog’s intervention, asking that it be reserved for the private industry as per the original plans. 
 

The mega 'Make in India' project — named P75I — is for the construction of six conventional submarines with advanced abilities to stay underwater for extended periods with Air Independent Propulsion (AIP). The project was picked up as the biggest under an ambitious strategic partnership policy in 2016 to promote private sector involvement in defence. 
(ET, June 20, 2018)


Black Pepper Spices up the Arm Approved Design Partner Program

One of the key features of the Arm ecosystem is its open and collaborative nature, and that’s no more evident than in its bank of Approved Design Partners. They bring an additional layer of design expertise and capabilities to SoCs from Arm silicon partners, enabling them with more opportunities to bring custom chips to a vast variety of markets.  Ensuring a global spread of design partners, especially around the world’s biggest tech hubs, has always been a priority for us and the addition of India’s Black Pepper is an important milestone on that journey. We now have a trusted design services partner in Bangalore able to support regional APAC licensees within or closer to their respective time zones. India is a hotbed for technology potential, with the government predicting the semiconductor component market alone will be worth more than $30 billion by 2025.

(Design & Reuse, June 18, 2018)


TRAI, BEREC Sign Memorandum on Preserving, Promoting Net Neutrality Rules

Telecom regulators from India and the European Union (EU) met this week to announce their common understanding of the "building blocks of net neutrality rules", and their intention to collaborate on regulations. Representatives of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and the Body of European Regulators for Electronics Communication (BEREC) on Thursday in Sopat, Poland signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to "advocate for effective electronics communications regulation." The two also released a "Joint Statement for the Open Internet", that defined the heretofore mentioned building blocks.  The MoU was said to show the willingness of both sides to develop regular exchanges regarding the implementation and preservation of net neutrality rules. The regulators said they intend to "promote competitive markets, technological innovation, and value for consumers."

(Gadgets, June 16, 2018)


India’s first lithium-ion cell manufacturing plant to come up in Andhra

In line with the government’s “Make in India” initiative, Munoth Industries, promoted by Chennai-based Munoth group, announced here on Wednesday the setting up of India’s first lithium-ion cell manufacturing plant in Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh, for the mobile industry. The plant will be set up with an outlay of Rs 799 crore in three phases, Munoth Industries said, adding that the plant will provide employment opportunities to 1,700 people. The first phase of th “The setting up of India’s first lithium-ion cell manufacturing plant for mobile industry will improve competitiveness. It will create more value addition to the country and eventually it will drive down the pricing,” Pankaj Mohindroo, National President, Indian Cellular Association (ICA) told IANS.e project will be operational by March 2019 and the second and third phases by 2022, the company added. 

(Indian Express, June 15, 2018)


India’s BEL opens Vietnam office to boost exports

India’s state-owned Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) has opened a representative office in Hanoi, Vietnam, to pursue exports in the country and the wider Southeast Asia region. The office was opened on 13 June by India’s Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, who is visiting Vietnam to take part in the fourth annual defence industry meeting between the two countries. BEL said the new office – its first in international markets – will enable it to “address export business opportunities and to provide product support and services to users in the region”. BEL added that the new office is in line with efforts to expand its international profile and to “give a thrust to exports worldwide, especially in Southeast Asia”.

(Jane’s 360, June 14, 2018)


India: The Cross-Border E-Commerce Conundrum

Several e-commerce ventures around the world have expressed their interest in exploring the Indian market. It is relatively easier for existing cross-border e-commerce businesses to explore means to cater to Indian clientele without necessarily having to establish a physical presence in India in the form of brick and mortar stores, warehouses or offices. Cross-border retail e-commerce websites, for the most part, would simply need to ensure suitable tie-ups with logistics partners with capabilities for executing deliveries in India, and could otherwise continue to use their existing infrastructure to display their catalogue and service orders from customers who are physically located in, or require that their orders be delivered to, India.

However, this is not without several notable drawbacks. Cross-border retail e-commerce merchants face certain constraints in addition to those experienced by their Indian peers, for instance, increased shipping and import costs, longer lead times between placement of orders and corresponding deliveries, no 'cash on delivery' payment option, and a more complex returns and repairs process. Nevertheless, there is no doubt that the presence of cross-border e-commerce websites provide Indian consumers access to a wider range and variety of products as well as a cost effective way for foreign retailers looking to test the waters before committing to a more full-fledged investment in the Indian market.

(Mondaq, June 11, 2018)


Govt. unable to crack GST e-wallet code as export refunds remain unpaid

Even as exporters and the government continue to argue over the amount of unpaid refunds under the goods and services tax (GST) regime, the much-awaited e-wallet mechanism remains a non-starter. Traders had supported the e-wallet mechanism to battle the liquidity crunch that had set in after the GST was introduced. Subsequently, a decision to adopt it was taken at the 22nd GST Council meet on October 6 last year, with an initial deadline for April 1. However, after the deadline was missed, the government extended the roll-out by six months. Earlier this year, Business Standard was the first to point out that little progress would derail the April 1 deadline. More than two months later, despite multiple meetings between top officials of the Ministries of Commerce and Finance, the progress was slow, sources said.

(BS, June 06, 2018)


 Automotive Electronics Control Unit Management Market Report 2017: Business Segmentation By Revenue And Market Structure Forecast 2022

Automotive Electronics Control Unit Management Market report provides complete evaluation for those who are looking for Business expand in various regions, manufacturers, New entrants in the industry, Professional organisation/solutions providers, Government bodies, financial speculators and private value firms.

Reports presents an in-depth assessment of the Automotive Electronics Control Unit Management including enabling technologies, key trends, market drivers, challenges, standardization, regulatory landscape, opportunities, future roadmap, value chain, ecosystem player profiles and strategies. The report also presents forecasts for Automotive Electronics Control Unit Management investments from 2017 till 2022

Exclusive Reportage, June 03, 2018)


Fridge, AC to cost more from next month

Prices of refrigerators, air-conditioners and washing machines are set to go up 3-5% starting November, as white goods makers plan to pass on higher input costs.  However, consumers will mostly feel the impact only from December, as retailers are saddled with unsold inventory from Diwali which they will first clear before sourcing fresh stock at higher prices, three senior industry executives said. Input cost has gone up by 30-50% since the last price hike, which the industry effected in January.  The price of steel has since increased by 40% and that of copper by 50%. A crucial chemical called MDI, which is used to make foams mostly for refrigerators, is facing a global shortage and its price has doubled.

(ET, May 30, 2018)


Lack of land title means no payment for solar producers

Solar energy developers have protested to the ministry of new and renewable energy against the Karnataka government for delaying clearance of land acquisition and using that as a reason to deny them payments for power supplied.

The developers are not being paid because they haven’t received clear titles to the land they acquired for the projects, the National Solar Energy Federation of India wrote to the ministry. ET has seen a copy of the letter. The developers won contracts for 920 MW.

(ET, May 30, 2018)


SoftBank, IL&FS team up to power 20 GW solar parks

The SoftBank Group is tying up with infrastructure conglomerate IL&FS to develop more than 20 gigawatts of solar capacity in India by 2025 to support Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambitious renewable energy road map for the country.

This comes less than two mgjonths after the Japanese group teamed up with China’s GCL System Integration Technology for a $930 million (Rs 6,350 crore) India solar power venture.

(ET, May 29, 2018)


WTO dispute on export schemes: India to engage with US

India today said it will engage with the US to explain its position on export schemes following America's decision to drag India into the WTO against programmes to incentivize shipments, a top official said. America yesterday challenged India's export subsidy programmes such as Merchandise Exports from India Scheme in the World Trade Organization (WTO), saying these initiatives harm the US companies by creating an uneven playing field.

(ET, May 30, 2018)


CAIT files petition in CCI against Walmart-Flipkart deal

Traders body CAIT today said it has approached the Competition Commission of India (CCINSE 0.00 %) against the Walmart-Flipkart deal, stating that it will create unfair competition and an uneven level playing field for domestic players. The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) said the deal would deny market access to non-preferred sellers and impact small traders on offline platform.  The confederation has "filed its objection petition in CCI against the Walmart-Flipkart deal," it said in a statement.

(ET, May 29, 2018)


EC will need 24 lakh EVMs in case of simultaneous polls in 2019

If simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and state assemblies are held in 2019, the Election Commission (EC) will require nearly 24 lakh EVMs, double the number required to hold only the Parliamentary polls. During their discussion with the Law Commission on May 16 on the issue of holding simultaneous polls, the EC officials had said they would need around Rs 4,500 crore to buy nearly 12 lakh additional electronic voting machines (EVMs) and an equal number voter-verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) machines. The estimate was based on the current cost to procure the devices, sources privy to the deliberations told PTI. In case simultaneous polls are held, two separate sets of EVMs and VVPAT machines will have to be placed in separate compartments for those contesting the Lok Sabha polls and the Assembly elections respectively.

(India Today, May 27, 2018)


India Test Fires Second BrahMos Supersonic Missile in 24 Hours

For the second time in just over 24 hours, the Indian Ministry of Defense’s (MoD) research arm, the Defense Research Development Organization (DRDO), and the Indian Army have test fired a supersonic BrahMos cruise missile. The latest test occurred on May 22 and was fired from an autonomous mobile launcher, the Indian Ministry of Defense (MoD) said in a statement. The launch took place at 11:45 a.m. local time at a test range in Balasore district in the eastern Indian state of Odisha and “fulfilled its objectives,” the MoD said. The launch tested new locally designed components of the BrahMos developed for some of the missile’s subsystems to extend its service life from 10 to 15 years.

(The Diplomat, May 24, 2018)


Cabinet apprised of the MoU between India and Angola for promoting bilateral cooperation in the field of Electronics and Information Technology

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has been apprised of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) the between India and Angola for promoting bilateral cooperation in the field of Electronics and Information Technology. .The MoU intends to promote closer cooperation in the areas of e-Governance, HRD for IT education, Information Security, Electronics Hardware manufacturing, IT embedded Software industry, Telemedicine etc. Background: The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has been mandated to promote international cooperation in the emerging and frontier areas of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) under bilateral and regional framework of cooperation. MeitY has entered into MoUs/Agreements with counterpart organizations/ agencies of various countries to promote close cooperation and exchange of information in the area of ICT. To further enhance cooperation with various countries, particularly in view of the new initiatives taken by Government of India like "Digital India", "Make in India" etc., there is an increased need for exploring business opportunities in the technology sector which are of interest.

(BS, May 23, 2018)


The Significance of E-Waste Management In the backdrop of Current IT Boom

The IT, IT enabled services (ITeS) and electronics has been one of the fastest-growing industries in India, both in terms of production and exports. The Indian electronics products demand worldwide is expected to grow at a CAGR of 41% during 2017-20, and expected to reach US$ 400 billion by 2020. According to NASSCOM, exports in the IT-BPM sector is set to grow at 7-8% while domestic market is set to grow at 10-11% adding 130,000-150,000 jobs by FY2018. Additionally, India being the second largest mobile phone producer in the world after China, annual production of mobile phones in the country has increased from 3 million units in 2014 to 11 million units in 2017, according to data shared by Indian Cellular Association (ICA).

(Entrepreneur, May 23, 2018)


RCom unit to pay Rs. 232 cr to settle with minority investors, shares spike

Reliance Communications' tower arm has reached a settlement with minority investors including HSBC Daisy Investments, a big step towards clearing the way for the sale of the telco's towers and fibre assets to Reliance Jio. The move pushed up RCom's scrip 6.21% on the Bombay Stock Exchange to Rs 16.25.  According to sources, the Anil Ambani owned company has agreed to pay Rs 232 crore to the minority investors for settling the issue.

(ET, May 30, 2018)


HAL keen to supply Navy with light utility helicopters

Putting its hat in the ring for a naval requirement of light utility helicopters, state-owned aircraft manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has asked the defence ministry to consider its indigenous chopper as well, against just looking at international companies like Airbus and Bell for replacements.  Sources have told ET that the state-owned company has informed the defence ministry about the progress in its light utility helicopter (LUH) programme that undertook its first flight in September 2016 and is planned for production starting this year.

(ET, May 19, 2018)


Dynapower and Raychem RPG Announce Technology Transfer & Licensing Agreement to Bring Dynapower Energy Storage Technology to India and Neighboring SAARC Countries

Dynapower and Raychem RPG are pleased to announce they have executed a technology transfer and licensing agreement to bring Dynapower’s energy storage inverter technology to India and neighboring SAARC countries. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently hailed energy storage of solar energy in India as, “[the] next big technological revolution.”  “Dynapower is proud to work alongside Raychem RPG to help realize this revolution,” said Peter Pollak, Dynapower CEO. “For over 50 years we have deployed our power electronics around the world and pioneered the development of energy storage inverters, including the first UL-1741 listed smart inverter. We are excited to bring our technology and know-how to India as well as the SAARC countries as part of the agreement.”

(DynaPower, May 17, 2018)


Universal Robots Expects India Biz to Grow Over 100pc

Denmark-based Universal Robots expects its business in India to grow over 100 per cent with adoption of its robots in sectors like apparel, finance and electronics, the company said. "Universal Robots has been shipping to India since last 5-6 years. We opened our office here three years ago. Automobile and automotive component makers have been early adopters of our robots. Now electronics, apparel and finance are opening up. We expect our business to grow over 100 per cent year-on-year," Universal Robots General Manager for South Asia Pradeep David said.

(News18, May 17, 2018)


East Delhi complex first to get rooftop solar plant, will generate electricity at Rs 2.50 per unit

Milan Vihar Apartments in east Delhi’s IP Extension became the first group housing society in the capital to get its own rooftop solar power plants. Inaugurated by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, the 140 kWp plant will generate electricity at Rs 2.50 per unit for 1,600 residents living in approximately 400 flats.

Kejriwal said the panels were set up under the RESCO (Renewable Energy Service Company) model, in which the cost of the installation — Rs 77 lakh in this case —is borne by a private company. “Under the agreement, the company sets up the plant and generates electricity at Rs 4.66 per unit for 25 years. The Delhi government will provide a Rs 2 subsidy — which means people will pay Rs 2.66. The Central government will pay 30% of the capital cost,” he said.

According to officials, the Delhi government, Indraprastha Power Generation Co. Ltd and Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy Management Centre (EEREM) have signed an agreement under which electricity has to be provided at the same rate for 25 years.

(Indian Express, May 14, 2018)


Walmart-Flipkart deal shows both Indian e-commerce’s coming of age & repetition of history

Walmart’s acquisition of Flipkart demonstrates both Indian e-commerce’s coming of age and a repetition of history.

US giants will spend billions in India because they see huge opportunities, and this will produce a short-term boon for Indian consumers.

When the dust settles, though, prices will rise and consumer choices will become more limited than they had been. Foreign companies will mine data and manipulate consumer preferences. They will have once again colonised India’s retail industry.

(ET, May 15, 2018)


The defence and electronics sectors are driving India’s manufacturing industry

The Digital India scheme introduced by the government in a bid to advanced technology across the nation has seen the rise of electronics manufacturing.

As part of the scheme, India has announced the target of net zero imports in the country by 2020. India’s budget has levied a 10% import duty of several components of smartphones to discourage imports, including print circuit boards (PCBs).

The Chinese electronics manufacturer has recently opened smartphone facilities in the country and has now started producing PCBs in India along with Samsung.

(Manufacturing Global, May 14, 2018)


Infineon launches new Development Center for automotive electronics and artificial intelligence in Dresden

Infineon is setting up a new Development Center at its Dresden location. The company is planning to create around 100 additional new jobs in the first phase. The new Development Center is expected to employ a total of around 250 people in the medium term. One focus of it will be to develop new products and solutions for automotive and power electronics, as well as artificial intelligence. It is scheduled to be launched in the course of the 2018 calendar year.

In Dresden, the Infineon Group already has one of its largest and most cutting-edge locations for developing wafer technologies and manufacturing processes, as well as a highly automated production plant. 2,200 employees carry out research into and develop technologies for microcontrollers, sensors and power semiconductors and make chips there – including for the automotive industry. System integration is gaining in importance to enable complex interaction between semiconductors in more and more technically sophisticated cars. Modeling complex systems and developing highly integrated products will be one of the new Development Center’s core tasks in addition to chip design.

Infineon, May 11, 2018)


India automotive industry to grow at 10% CAGR between 2018-2023: Research Cosmos

The Indian automotive manufacturing sector is expanding at a fast rate, which is making the country one of the fastest-growing automotive manufacturers in the world. With an annual production of nearly 4.5 million units in 2016, the country was the fifth-largest automobile manufacturer in the world, falling behind China, the United States, Japan, and Germany. The country’s automotive industry was the second-fastest growing among the top 10 vehicle manufacturers, with an annual growth rate of 7.9%, which was second only to China in 2016. The annual vehicle production in the country grew from 3.89 million units in 2012 to 4.49 million units during the same year. In addition to this, the country’s Automobile Mission Plan aims to lead India to be among the top three automobile manufacturers in the world by 2026. Incentives from the government, rising disposable income, lower auto financing interest rates, increasing FDI in the automotive sector, along with the country being ranked at 30th position in the global manufacturing index by the World Economic Forum, are the factors expected to drive the automotive industry in the country, registering a CAGR of over 10% over the forecast period.

(ElectronicsB2B.com, May 10, 2018)


Nokia acquires US-based IoT startup SpaceTime Insight

Nokia on Monday said it has acquired California-based startup SpaceTime Insight to expand its Internet of Things (IoT) portfolio and IoT analytics capabilities. SpaceTime Insight provides machine learning-powered analytics and IoT applications for some of the world’s largest transportation, energy and utilities organisations, including Entergy, FedEx, NextEra Energy, Singapore Power and Union Pacific Railroad. Besides the US, the company has offices in India, Canada, UK and Japan.

Designed specifically for asset-intensive industries, the machine learning models and other advanced analytics of SpaceTime Insight predict asset health with a high degree of accuracy and optimise related operations, thereby helping its customers cut cost and risk, while increasing operational efficiencies and reducing service outages. Without divulging the terms of the deal, Nokia said the acquisition will accelerate the development of the company’s IoT offerings to deliver high-value IoT applications and services to new and existing customers.

(BGR India, May 07, 2018)


PUSHING MAKE IN INDIA TO DEVELOP DEFENCE: MIN

Highlighting the fact that a nation cannot be “truly” self-reliant until it is able to develop and manufacture its weapon systems, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said here on Tuesday the Government is promoting ‘Make in India’ projects to develop the Indian defence industry.

Making this point here while addressing the bi-annual Navy Commanders’ Conference, she said the Government is also promoting the medium and small scale enterprises in the ‘Make in India’ venture to gain access to world class technology. Appreciating the role of the Indian Navy in indigenization, she said its active role in engaging a wide range of research and development and production agencies is indicative of its commitment to self-reliance.

Towards this endeavour, the Combat Management System for the Indigenous Aircraft Carrier being developed with a private vendor (M/s Tata Power SEO) is a big step towards Strategic partnership between the defence ministry and industry.Programme ‘Samudrika,’ which will result in achieving 100 percent indigenisation of the electronic warfare fit onboard Indian warships is also reflective of Indian Navy’s continued effortstowards indigenisation, she said. The minister also noted that shipbuilding projects worth over Rs 32,000 crore were tendered and progressing towards contract conclusion. Projects worth Rs760 crore for construction of yard crafts are also being targeted for early conclusion through private and small shipyards, to bolster the ‘Make in India’ initiative and provide the necessary impetus to the Indian shipbuilding industry, Sitharaman said.

(The Pioneer, May 09, 2018)


Govt. recommends green registration plates for electric vehicles

The Union road transport and highways ministry has recommended green registration plates for electric vehicles (EVs) so as to identify them for preferential treatment, such as special parking or discounted tolls.

The ministry will soon issue a notification specifying the colour of the plates to be used by these vehicles, two senior government officials said on condition of anonymity. According to the ministry’s proposal, while the registration plates of private electric vehicles will have a green background with numbers and letters in white, those of commercial electric vehicles will have a green background with numbers and letters in yellow, the officials added.

Federal think tank Niti Aayog, which is framing the draft policy for EVs, had recommended green registration plates for such vehicles. It has also constituted a team comprising seven ministries such as power, road and heavy industries to frame guidelines to promote such vehicles.

(HT, May 04, 2018)


New Zealand electronics firm Rakon to buy out Bengaluru’s Centum in JV

Bengaluru-based Centum Electronics Ltd has agreed to sell its entire 51% stake in a joint venture with Rakon Ltd to the New Zealand electronics maker. The company will sell the stake in Centum Rakon India Pvt. Ltd for $5.5 million (Rs 36.5 crore), it said in a stock-exchange disclosure. Centum Rakon makes frequency-control products for telecom infrastructure. After the acquisition, Rakon’s holding in Centum Rakon will go up to 100%.

According to the agreement, Centum Electronics will receive 75% of the deal amount immediately and the remaining 25% over a period of 18 months from the signing date. The deal is likely to be closed.

(VC Circle, Apr 30, 2018)


Samsung eyes 40% share of Indian microwave market in 2018

Consumer electronics major Samsung is aiming 40 per cent market share in the microwave segment in India by the end of this year on the back of more innovative range of products, a top company official has said.

In 2017, Samsung had 33 per cent market share in the segment by volume in the country and 35.5 per cent by value in 2017. In 2013, it had 22 per cent market share by volume and 23.5 per cent by value.

"We are looking to better our market position and we would be touching 37 per cent (market share) by the end of first half of 2018)... We would touch market share of 40 per cent by the end of this year as we launch more innovative products," Samsung India vice president consumer electronics business Rajeev Bhutani told

(ET, Apr 23, 2018)


Solar cell imports: EU, Japan question safeguard duties recommended by India

The European Union and Japan have questioned the preliminary safeguard duties of 70 per cent on imported solar cells recommended by the Directorate General of Safeguards in India, adding to the on-going debate on the appropriateness of the duties.

“In a meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Safeguards Committee on Monday, the EU and Japan criticized the conduct of the investigations and the initial findings leading to the proposed safeguard duties on solar cells in India. New Delhi, however, stated that it follows WTO rules and regulations on the imposition of safeguard measures,” a Geneva-based trade official told BusinessLine.

(BusinessLine, Apr 25, 2018)


India probes dumping of EVA sheets for solar modules by 5 nations

India has initiated a probe into the alleged dumping of EVA sheets used in solar cell industry, imported from China, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Thailand.

The investigation on imports of 'Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA) sheets for solar modules' is carried out by the Directorate General of Antidumping and Allied Duties (DGAD), which is an arm of the commerce ministry.

In the probe, the directorate would determine the existence, degree and effect of the dumped products on the domestic industry.

(BS, Apr 17, 2018)


Electronics exporter Syrma sets up domestic production unit

San Jose and Chennai based Syrma Technology, an exporter of electronic products and solutions announced its foray into the domestic market with a $10 million investment in its fifth manufacturing unit in the Delhi-Mumbai corridor. The unit will service the opportunities in the Indian market and will focus on the Auto, Industrial, Aerospace & Defence and Healthcare sectors which the company already makes products for.

Syrma designs and manufactures RFID tags, Magnetic products, Printed Circuit Boards Assembly (PCBAs) and box builds for a range of applications. In addition to two units in the Madras Export Processing Zone (MEPZ), Chennai the company has two manufacturing units located in Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.

(ET, Apr 26, 2018)


Electronics giant Philips posts 27% drop in Q1 profits

Dutch electronics giant Philips today posted a 27 per cent drop in first quarter profits, hit partly by the costs of restructuring and some acquisitions as it evolves its portfolio.

Net income fell in the first three months to 94 million euros (USD 115 million) compared to 128 million euros over the same period in 2017, the company reported in a statement.

Best known for the manufacture of light bulbs, electrical appliances and television sets, the Amsterdam-based company has gradually pulled out of these activities in face of fierce competition from Asia.

It focuses now more on high-end medical and health technology, such as computer tomography and molecular imaging, as well as household appliances.

(PTI, Apr 23, 2018)


India, Finland settle Nokia tax row

India and Finland have reached an accord on the tax dispute with Nokia under the Mutual Agreement Procedure (MAP), clearing the way for the sale of the company’s Chennai plant, which has been idle for more than three years, officials said. This involves a payment of Rs.1,600 crore, a sum that was deposited with the government by Nokia in March. The resolution covers disputes pertaining to Nokia India as well as Nokia Corp., said the officials.

Soon after taking over in 2014, the Narendra Modi government had pledged to put in place a taxpayer friendly regime and take steps to reduce litigation. Nokia India had been issued a demand notice for Rs 2,500 crore in 2013, which underwent rectification to remove errors to Rs 1,600 crore. A Rs 10,000 crore tax raised on Nokia Corp. for the same transaction on the grounds that it had a permanent establishment in the country — a move regarded as overzealousness on the part of the department by some — was not found sustainable and has been dropped.

(ET, Apr 20, 2018)


Prabhu promises exporters to take up GST refund issue

Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu on Wednesday assured exporters of taking up the issue of Goods and Service Tax (GST) refund with the finance ministry and said he plans to call a ministerial meeting to discuss export related issues.

As exports dipped in March after a gap of four months, Prabhu sought a detailed action plan from exporters of all sectors in an interaction with them here.

“I have asked exporters to give me the details of the pending refund. GST refund is a major issue for exports. I will take it up with the finance ministry,” he said.

(ET, Apr 19, 2018)


Apple, Google, IBM CEOs Head to China With Trade War Brewing

Leaders of Apple Inc., Google and other U.S. technology giants head to China this weekend to pursue a familiar goal: To do more business in the world’s most populous nation. The effort has had mixed results, at best, in the past.

With a trade war brewing between the world’s two largest economies, the goal has gotten loftier still.

Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple, Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, and Ginny Rometty, head of IBM, are scheduled to attend the China Development Forum, an annual gathering that helps Western corporations build relationships with the country’s government officials.

(ET, Mar 24, 2018)


BYD entry worries local auto companies but government happy with dipping prices

The entry of China’s giant e-vehicles company BYD in India by bagging large tenders for electric buses is worrying Indian auto majors but the Union government is weighing their concerns against the benefits of competition, which has led to a sharp fall in prices. 
Indian industry executives say the decision to allow a company the size of BYD to participate in the recent tenders goes against the government’s ‘Make in India’ mission and will create jobs in China instead of in India.

 (ET, Mar 23, 2018)


Chinese companies keen to engage in India smart cities mission, initiatives:

A number of Chinese companies across various sectors have converged here in Hyderabad to take part in the Sm@rt Urbanization meet to explore the possibilities of working on projects in the upcoming smart cities projects in India.

The delegation headed by Shiyong Hong, Vice President, China Chamber of Commerce and Export Machinery and Electronics Products (CCCME), is seeking to facilitate interface between Chinese and Indian companies exploring the potential to work on upcoming projects.

The Smart Cities Council India, part of the global consortium of smart cities, is organizing the 5th Smart Cities Summit Sm@rt Urbanization at Hyderabad International Convention Centre to analyze the learnings and impact assessment.

Speaking at the conference being held here, Shiyong Hong, Vice President, China Chamber of Commerce and Export Machinery and Electronics Products (CCCME), said, “China and India are the two largest developing countries with same strategies and dreams. Chinese President and Indian Prime Minister have met each other more than 10 times in the last 3 years. We need to match our strategies and explore potential for mutual growth.”

(Business Line, Mar 21, 2018)


India has huge potential to become leader in solar energy sector: Vice President

Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu has said that India has huge potential to become the leader in solar energy sector. Mr Naidu said this while addressing the inaugural session of ELECRAMA 2018, organized by the Indian Electrical and Electronics Manufacturing Association in Noida, Uttar Pradesh on Saturday.

He said, various initiatives taken by the government have improved India’s rank in World   Bank’s Ease of getting electricity Index from 99 to 26.

The Vice President said, electric vehicles and hybrid electric vehicles will be driving the automobile industry in the coming years.

He further said that the government had already unveiled the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan and set a target of 60 to 70 lakh units of Electric Vehicles and hybrid electric vehicles by 2020.

(The Indian Awaaz, Mar 12, 2018)


Delta Electronics launches EV charging solutions to support the government's 2030 vision

In support of government's electric mobility drive, leading power and energy management company Delta Electronics India Pvt. Ltd. on Tuesday launched its complete range of energy efficient electric vehicle (EV) charging solutions in India.

The advanced EV charging solution offerings from Delta will enable the ecosystem to keep pace with the growing demands for a robust electric automobile infrastructure.

Exhibiting at Elecrama 2018, Delta showcased its diverse portfolio of EV solutions with DC Quick, AC Chargers and Site Management System.

These chargers can be conveniently installed in multiple applications such as parking spaces, highway service, as well as residential and commercial buildings.

(ANI, Mar 13, 2018)


The curious case of rising electronic imports

Electronic items are weighing heavily on India’s trade deficit. Relentlessly rising imports of electronic items, especially mobile phones, at a time when crude oil prices are firmer, pose a risk to the country’s current account deficit (CAD).

In January 2017, India’s net electronic imports increased 12% compared to a year ago. The chart alongside shows the annualized electronic goods deficit touched $50 billion for April-December. That is as much as 30% higher on a year-on-year basis.

In fact, the magnitude of the impact this variable can have on overall trade deficit has risen over time. For perspective, “Electronic goods deficit is now very close to 9MFY18 annualised oil deficit of $64 billion,” pointed out Edelweiss Securities Ltd in a report on 28 February, adding that the category accounts for 25% of the trade deficit widening during the period.

(ANI, Mar 13, 2018)


Ministry of Defence project to add tech muscle to arms procurement

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has begun a project to build IT systems that would help streamline operations and take faster decisions as it looks to increase domestic production of arms and equipment for the armed forces.


So far, officials say, lack of a single-technology platform is among the reasons that has affected faster decision making in local procurement and has led India to depend hugely on imports. The technology platform is also being designed for planners in the military to get a single view of expertise of domestic manufacturers in arms and equipment, helping them shortlist vendors. The vendors have the provision to file certifications, products and licences to the defence ministry. 

(ET, Mar 12, 2018)


EESL to float another global tender for 10,000 e-vehicles

State-run Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL) will soon float another global tender for 10,000 electric vehicles to be deployed across the country for government use, a senior executive has said. 

EESL, which is a joint venture of PSUs under the power ministry, will also sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the government of Andhra Pradesh this week to supply 10,000 electric vehicles. 

(ET, Feb 19, 2018)


State-owned fuel pumps to top up digital payments companies

One of the major sectors where the government is promoting digital payments is fuel retailing and digital payment companies are targeting the state-owned fuel retailing agencies for rapid digitisation of fuel pumps, which can push up transaction numbers and also create consumer stickiness. From Fino Payments Bank to Paytm to payment entities like Mobikwik and PhonePe all are trying to bring in technology innovations in this space to ensure fast yet reliable digital payments at fuel outlets. 
“We need digital payments to be accomplished within less than 15 seconds for each consumer, which will ensure there is no queuing up and no problems for our customers,” said Sanjay Sinha, general manager, retail sales and loyalty at Indian Oil. “Any form of inconvenience will force them back to cash.” 

(ET, Feb 19, 2018)


Industry 4.0 can transform Indian Manufacturing

In recent years, Industry 4.0 has evolved rapidly from a distant, esoteric concept to something companies now believe is real and tangible.

Industry 4.0 is a collective term for the new technologies that are significantly changing the manufacturing landscape.  These technologies that are significantly changing the manufacturing landscape.  These technologies include 3D printing, sensors, advanced robotics, Internet of Thing (IoT), simulation, augmented reality, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Big Data ad Advanced Analytics.  The level of maturity across technologies as well as the stage of their cost evolution varies, and hence their applicability across industries in India is different.  Still, there is no doubt that these technologies can substantially improve cost, productivity, quality, and flexibility and employee satisfaction.

(ET, Feb 13, 2018)


TV makers may review plans to Make in India

Consumer electronics makers Samsung, LG, Sony and Panasonic are reviewing their 'Make in India' strategy for televisions — which may lead to scaling down of local assembling operations — following the government decision to tax imports of 'open cell' LED TV panels. 

These companies, among others, are now evaluating imports of finished LED TV panels from countries with whom India has free trade agreements (FTAs) with, such as the Asean bloc of Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand and South Korea, which will provide 7-8% cost benefit, two senior industry officials said. 

(ET, Feb 07, 2018)


Centre looks at phased roll-out of e-way bill

The central government is looking at backup options to introduce the electronic way (e-way) bill in a phased manner. It was to be implemented from February 1, but the Centre had to defer it indefinitely as businesses faced disruptions after the portal crashed.

The bill, said sources, can now be introduced after safeguard options are installed for the portal’s smooth working.

In January, the Goods and Services Tax Council decided to advance the introduction of the bill from February 1 for interstate movement of goods valued above Rs 50,000 from the earlier April 1. It gave freedom to states to introduce the bill for intrastate movement of goods beyond 10 km by July 1. However, 13 states had volunteered to implement the bill for intrastate movement of goods from February 1 itself.

(BS, Feb 07, 2018)


Govt. must direct all incentives at EVs: Tata Motors chief

Tata Motors has said that the government’s incentives must be directed towards electric vehicles (EVs) only, as the industry would have to develop technologies such as hybrids in order to meet the future regulatory requirements.

Speaking at a roundtable here, Guenter Butschek, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, said that there should be no distractions on India’s journey towards full EVs and it must be carried out with a ‘single-minded’ focus, and considering the limited budget of the government, incentives must be solely directed towards EVs.

(BusinessLine, Feb 07, 2018)


Hero Electric eyes capacity expansion

Electric two-wheeler maker Hero Electric will invest Rs 700 crore in capacity expansion over the next three to four years as it expects demand for green mobility solutions to pick up soon. 

Naveen Munjal, company's managing director, said funds for capacity increase and setting up of new plants will be raised through debt and equity. Talks are on with strategic partners for equity as well as technical tieup, he said. 

(ET, Feb 06, 2018)


Eicher launches first Electric Bus

Eicher Trucks and Buses launched its first electric bus “Skyline Pro E”.  The buses are certified to ply on Indian roads and we are confident they will bring great value to commuters, city transportation corporations and other organisations in this ecosystem,” Vinod Aggarwal, MD, VE Commercial Vehicles said.

(ET, Feb 06, 2018)


No Angel Tax on startups with up to Rs.10 cr funding

Startups incorporated before 2016 that have got up to Rs.10 crore in angel funding won’t face the so-called angel tax, once changes in the regime are finalized by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) which will soon notify the amendment, a senior government official told ET. It will also set up a separate committee for the recognition of such startups so that they get the relief, he said.

“We have finalized the conditions which will resolve the issue of pre-2016 startups,” the official said.  Startups incorporated after 2016 and recognized under the Startup India policy are spared this tax.

(ET, Feb 06, 2018)


Electric buses will take over half the world fleet by 2025

Nearly half of the municipal buses on the road worldwide will be electric within seven years.  With China expected to dominate the global market as it aims to cut urban pollution and support domestic manufacturers.

The total number of electric buses in service is forecast to more than triple, from 386,000 last year to about 1.2 million in 2025, equal to about 47 per cent of the worldwide city bus fleet, according to a report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

(BS, Feb 05, 2018)


Imports will not decline with Customs duty hike : Experts

The government raised the basic customs duty on a range of products from consumer goods and automotive parts to fully and partly built vehicles and medical devices, among others.  The hike was to the tune of 5-10 per cent with an additional surcharge slapped on the basic customs duty, making goods costlier as a result.

But, while the move was aimed at providing a boost to the government’s Make in India plans, the question is: Will these measures actually aid local manufacturing?  Experts believe that they will not because the crucial component market required to aid local manufacturing remains weak.

(BS, Feb 03, 2018)


ISRO set to launch 31 satellites

India will launch 31 satellites, including earth observation spacecraft Cartosat, on January 12, instead of its earlier tentative schedule on January 10, a space official said.

“The rocket launch to carry Cartosat and other satellites, including 28 from the US and five other countries, will take place on Jnauary 12 at 9:30am.”  Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Public Relations Director Devi Prasad Karnik told IANS here.

(Business Line, Jan 09, 2018)


Sops in the works for States that promote exports: Prabhu

The Commerce and Industry Ministry nulls incentives for States that play a  proactive role in promoting exports as it will help boost economic growth, Union Minister Suresh Prabhu said.

He said he has sought the views of States on the issue which was discussed during the third meeting of Council for Trade Development and Promotion.

(Business Line, Jan 09, 2018)


Chhattisgarh signs agreement to lay 32,000 km optical fiber network in villages

The Chhattisgarh Government today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Centre for the second phase of the Bharat Net project under which 5987 village panchayats will be connected through optical fiber network.

 

The MoU will pave the way for laying 32,466 kms of optical fiber cable in 5987 Gram Panchayats of the state at a cost of Rs 1624 crore, Chief Minister Raman Singh said.

Union Minister of State for Telecommunications Manoj Sinha, present during the signing, said that Chhattisgarh is the first state in the country to use the ultramodern "ring architecture technology" to connect village panchayats by optical fiber to ensure better connectivity.

(Indian Express, Jan 08, 2018)


NITI eyes use of Blockchain Technology

Niti Aayog, the government’s premier policymaking body, is exploring the use of blockchain technology in legally approved areas such  as education, health and agriculture.

The Aayog set up in place of the erstwhile Planning Commission three years ago, has tried to bring high-end technology to key social sectors while giving policy directions in energy sector  through its National Energy Policy or the electric vehicle mission.  It introduced and popularized the concept of Atal Tinkering Labs or incubation centres across several schools in the country to encourage innovation among students.  Besides it has been instrumental in laying out a roadmap for disinvestment in more than 74 PSUs, rolling out the digital movement for the country post demonetization in November last year and introducing big-ticket reforms in health and education system.                       

(ET, Jan 04, 2018)


Investment In Electronic Manufacturing Grew By 27 Percent In 2017

Digital India has made rapid progress in the year 2017. The Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY), as a key ministry under the Government of India and the enabler of Digital India program, has undertaken numerous revolutionary initiatives in the area of IT/ ITeS and electronic manufacturing that have put India on the global map and went on to become case studies for the reputed Universities across the globe. Having covered over 99 percent of the adult population of the country through the unique identity Aadhaar, the country is now looking at embracing the second phase of Digital India.

The year saw a 27 percent jump in the investment on electronic manufacturing where the total volume of investment reached 1.57 lakh crore in 2017 vis-à-vis 1.43 lakh crore in 2016; this was only 11,000 crore in 2014.  There has been almost 60 percent rise on the production of mobile phones to reach 17.5 crore units vis-s-vis 11 crore units last year, adding 4 lakh direct and indirect jobs in the sector; this was only 6 crore units in 2014-15. Digital transactions witnessed a growth of over 300 percent during this year.

(Communications Today, Jan 02, 2018)


Metal printing used to make flexible, stretchable electronics

Scientists have developed a technique for directly printing metal circuits, to create flexible, stretchable electronics.

The technique can use multiple metals and substrates and is compatible with existing manufacturing systems that employ direct printing technologies.

"Flexible electronics hold promise for use in many fields, but there are significant manufacturing costs involved - which pose a challenge in making them practical for commercial use," said Jingyan Dong, from North Carolina State University in the US.

"Our approach should reduce cost and offer an efficient means of producing circuits with high resolution, making them viable for integrating into commercial devices," Dong said.

The technique uses existing electro hydrodynamic printing technology, which is already used in many manufacturing processes that use functional inks.

However, instead of ink, researchers used molten metal alloys with melting points as low as 60 degrees Celsius.

(Indian Express, Dec 26, 2017)


Indian Navy deploys submarine, P8I aircraft for naval exercise with Oman

The Indian Navy deployed a submarine and the P8I long-range maritime aircraft for the first time for a bilateral naval exercise with the Omani navy. 

The 11th edition of the exercise, 'Naseem Al Bahr' or 'Sea Breeze', was held on December 17 off the coast of Oman. The exercise is a biennial feature since 1993.  The Indian Navy also deployed two naval ships - INS Trikand and INS Teg - for the exercise. The Indian ships entered Muscat on December 16 for the harbour phase. 

(ET, Dec 21, 2017)


Plan budget better, panel asks defence ministry

The panel also pointed out that from “2012-13 onwards, the ‘Capital’ component of the budgetary allocation has witnessed a persistent decrease in comparison to ‘Revenue’ component of the Budget”

The Parliamentary standing committee on defence has asked the defence ministry to “take concrete measures to    exercise prudent and effective budgetary planning” and once again “highlighted the negative effect of persistent trend of decreased allocation of funds as compared to the projected amount meant for Capital Expenditure for the (defence) Services”. It also pointed out that from “2012-13 onwards, the ‘Capital’ component of the budgetary allocation has witnessed a persistent decrease in comparison to ‘Revenue’ component of the Budget”.

(Indian Express, Dec 21, 2017)


Bill amendment: Easier to acquire land for national security, defence

Lok Sabha passed Wednesday a bill to make it easier for the government to acquire immovable property for “national security and defence purpose” by changing the rules for payment of compensation. The Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property (Amendment) Bill 2017 amends the original 1952 Act to allow the Centre to reissue the acquisition notice in case the property’s owner wants to be given a hearing. As per the amendment, the compensation rates that will be payable will be fixed at the date of publication of the first notice in addition to an interest.

The amended bill is aimed at addressing cases where the property owner is able, after prolonged litigation, to get the acquisition notice quashed in the court so as to be given a hearing. “This may cause astronomical hike in the quantum of compensation because of the inevitable appreciation of the market value of the property between the original date of publication of notice of acquisition and the present date of publication of the same, pursuant to the orders of the courts,” the bill states.

(Indian Express, Dec 21, 2017)


Indian Navy deploys submarine, P8I aircraft for naval exercise with Oman

The Indian Navy deployed a submarine and the P8I long-range maritime aircraft for the first time for a bilateral naval exercise with the Omani navy. 

The 11th edition of the exercise, 'Naseem Al Bahr' or 'Sea Breeze', was held on December 17 off the coast of Oman.  The exercise is a biennial feature since 1993. 

The Indian Navy also deployed two naval ships - INS Trikand and INS Teg - for the exercise. The Indian ships entered Muscat on December 16 for the harbour phase. 

"Delegations from the Royal Navy of Oman embarked on the Indian Naval Ship Teg on December 18 for a briefing on basic anti-submarine warfare procedures," the Indian Navy said in a statement

(ET, Dec 21, 2017)


Defence Ministry allows private sector to manufacture eight selected ammunition for Indian Army

ØThe move comes around six months after the government unveiled the ambitious strategic partnership model under which Indian private sector companies will be allowed to form joint ventures with foreign defence majors to build fighter aircraft, helicopters, submarines and main battle tanks in India.

The defence ministry on Wednesday announced that it has allowed private sector to manufacture eight selected ammunition for the Indian Army in a major reform initiative.

The ministry said the aim of the decision is to facilitate development of indigenous capacity, reduce import dependence and develop a robust supply of ammunition within the country. “With the long-term objective of building capacity within the industry as a robust alternative source of ammunition, the government has approved manufacturing of eight selected ammunition for Indian Army by Indian Industry,” the defence ministry said.

(Indian Express, Dec 20, 2017)


Tata motors release the first batch of the electric variant of Tigor for EESL

The first batch was flagged off in the presence of Tata group chairman N Chandrasekaran, group patriarch Ratan Tata, and Tata Motors managing director and chief executive Guenter Butschek.

“As we work together to build the future of e- mobility, I am confident that our customers will respond very favourably to this electric model,” Chandrasekaran, who flagged off the first batch of the vehicles, reported PTI.

The government is planning to have only electric cars by 2030 in its efforts to reduce both oil imports as well reduce carbon emissions to a significant extent.

The third largest passenger car-maker had become the L1 bidder in amid stiff competition and won the bids for 10,000 e-cars floated by EESL in September as the other bidder, Mahindra’s, quoted Rs 2.3 lakh above the former’s and was initially out of the race.

But later it was given the option to match Tata Motors’ price and accordingly chose to sell 150 e-Veritos to EESL. Mahindra has already supplied some of them.

The EESL order first mandated supply to be completed on/before November 30 but was later postponed to December-end.

For phase 1, Tata Motors is required to deliver 250 Tigor EVs, for which it has received a letter of agreement. For an additional 100 cars, the agreement is expected to be issued shortly by EESL, the company said.

“With e-Tigor, we’ve begun our journey in boosting e- mobility and offering a full range of e-vehicles to customers. This tender has effectively paved the way for connecting our aspirations in the e-mobility space with the vision of government,” Butschek said.

The electric drive systems for the EESL order have been developed and supplied by Electra EV-a company established to develop and supply electric drive systems for the automotive sector, the release said.

“Tata Motors is committed to the government vision for electric vehicles by 2030 and will work in a collaborative manner to facilitate faster adoption of electric vehicles,” PTI reported.


NFR sets LED lights target

According to The Telegraph, NFR chief public relations officer Pranav Jyoti Sharma on Wednesday said 100 per cent work on replacing conventional lights with LED lights have been completed in 101 stations and work was on to make rest of the stations fully LED-lit within the targeted period.

He said “It’s a huge initiative to provide energy-efficient lighting which will eventually greatly help in conservation of the environment. This will lead to an annual saving of Rs 67 lakh per year in the energy bill of the railway,”.

Of the 101 stations where LED lighting has been completed, 35 are in Katihar division, 14 in Alipurduar division, 30 in Rangiya division, 16 in Lumding division and six in Tinsukia division.

The railway ministry has taken up a mission to encourage the use of renewable energy in trains and stations across the country.

The Southern Railway has recently started a project to replace all their lights with LED. The lights in the trains are also being replaced with LED lights phase-wise.

In another initiative to harvest clean and green energy, the NFR has already commissioned several roof-top solar-powered plants over railway establishment.

“These plants are producing around 980KW of power for official use. We are going to have more such solar power plants gradually,” Sharma said.

The NFR had earlier started work to cover 887km in the Northeast as green corridors by fitting zero-discharge free bio-toilets in all trains by March.


India’s largest markerspace to come up in Hyderabad

To be known as T-Works, the facility will come up over 250,00 square feet with many partners offering their software tools and equipment.

Modelled on the lines of makerspaces in other countries and customised to Indian needs, this will probably be the world’s second largest facility of its kind, he said.

Anybody with an idea can collaborate with other people at T-Works and convert his or her designs into working prototype.

According to IANS, the Minister said, “T-Works will be up and running around this time next year,” while addressing India Design Summit organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry, adding anybody could use freely available tools — software, test and measurement equipment — to build any product.

“T-Works will allow anyone young or old school student, graduate or retired professor, man or woman to collaborate with other intelligent individuals and converge their designs on paper or PC and convert it into working prototype,” said Rama Rao, son of Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao.

Open to all Indians, the facility will have CNC machines, cutting machines of all kinds, welding and carpentry tools, PCB assembly machines, and 3D printers of all ranges.

“This I believe is going to change the way we do business especially with respect to design and hardware space in India,” he said.

The Minister said T-Works will help in making products in domains like mechanical, electro mechanic, electronics and semiconductor spaces. It will also help in making products in automobiles, IoT, avionics, drones, med devices, medical instruments, defence equipment, consumer electronics, telecom products, mobile devices, gadgets and sensors.

“T-Works will become one of cornerstones and essential hub in the wheel in heralding a new wave of entrepreneurs, makers, tinkerers and designers of all kinds, aesthetic, textile, fashion, lifestyle, mechanical and technological,” he added.

Source: http://www.electronicsb2b.com


Washable, printed circuits for smart clothes developed

Scientists have successfully printed washable and stretchable electronic circuits into fabric, paving the way for smart textiles and wearable electronics.

The circuits were made with cheap, safe and environmentally friendly inks, and printed using conventional inkjet printing techniques.

Researchers from the University of Cambridge in the UK showed how graphene - a two-dimensional form of carbon - can be directly printed onto fabric to produce integrated electronic circuits which are comfortable to wear and can survive up to 20 cycles in a typical washing machine.

(India Today, Nov 13, 2017)


Bharat-22 ETF to open for investment: All you need to know

ETF is essentially a security that tracks an index, commodity or a basket of assets. However, the ETF trades happen on an exchange in form of tradable stock. ETF investments are usually cheaper than fund investments and since majority ETFs track to a specific index, there are lower operating expenses as seen comparatively in actively invested mutual funds. ETFs also have no minimum amounts for investment or sales loads. This is unlike in mutual funds which generally have both. Also, ETFs sometime improve rate of return. Though, do note that there is no guarantee of returns given in the ETF.

Bharat-22 ETF will invest in blue chip stocks including Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSE), Specified Undertakings of the Unit Trust of India (SUUTI) and some PSU banks.

(Indian Express, Nov 14, 2017)


FTSE rises as sterling's decline boosts exporters

British shares rose, outperforming European benchmarks, as exporters benefited when the pound fell amid reports of a rebellion among Conservative MPs against the leadership of Prime Minister Theresa May.

Export-oriented companies drove the FTSE 100 up 0.2 percent by 0820 GMT, but bank stocks suffered as sterling dropped.

Sterling weakened after the Times newspaper reported on Sunday that 40 Conservative lawmakers had agreed to sign a letter of no confidence in May - just short of the 48 needed to force a leadership vote.

(TOI, Nov 13, 2017)


India saw lower greenhouse emissions in 2017 because of demonetization and GST? 

Due to demonetization and GST, India is likely to see just  2 pct rise in greenhouse gases emissions in 2017 unlike an average 6 per cent annual, as per 2017 Global Carbon Budget report. The report attributes the decline in greenhouse emission to rapid progress made in the installation of solar energy in India. However, it also says that substantially lower growth rate could be attributed to a slowdown in economy as well.  “Although India’s installed solar capacity almost doubled in 2016 to 12 GW (gigawatts), the reduction in this year’s growth is attributable to many factors, including reduced exports, a declining share of industrial and agricultural production in GDP, reduced consumer demand, and both a sudden fall in money circulation attributable to demonetization late in 2016 and a goods and services tax introduced in 2017,” the report published in Environmental Research Letters says.

(FE, Nov 13, 2017)


Digitization of India’s economy is the success story of demonetization

On the first year anniversary of demonetization, it’s important to ask if it accomplished its stated objectives. While it appears that the objectives of rooting out black money as announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8, 2016, has not been realised, given that almost all of the Rs 15 lakh-crore of high value notes in circulation were returned, is there credible evidence that another goal, which was articulated in the weeks following the announcement, has been achieved?

Unfortunately, much of the analysis has been simplistic and misleadingly compares two data points before and after demonetisation. For the past year, I’ve been developing and updating a statistical model calibrated to Reserve Bank of India data, which tracks the evolution of digital payments with data going back to 2011 and right up to the latest available, August 2017.

(HT, Nov 12, 2017)


GST Amendments: Impact on Indian Economy

The GST Council on Friday delivered a major overhaul of the GST design and rate structure. The broad thrust of the decisions was to improve lagging compliance and reduce the tax burden on smaller businesses. Some of the key decisions taken in the meeting are discussed below

As a transitional provision, businesses were required to file a summary return every month in form GSTR3B and pay taxes based on self-assessment. It was expected that this form will be used until December following which the full-fledged GST process of invoice matching will be up and running. However, the filing of detailed returns and invoice matching has run into problems. Consequently, the GST Council has decided to continue with the process of filing summary returns until March. The late fee for the delayed filing of GSTR3B where there is no tax liability has been reduced by 90% to Rs 20 per day.

(India Online, Nov 13, 2017)


Crompton Greaves out of Kenstar race

Homegrown private equity group Everstone will enter in exclusive talks with the promoters of home appliances brand Kenstar to acquire it after Advent International and Temasek-backed Crompton GreavesBSE -2.75 % pulled out of the race, said two people with direct knowledge of the deal. 

Last month, ET had reported how Crompton Greaves and Everstone were the only two contenders left to acquire the VideoconBSE 4.95 % Group Company that is being valued at around Rs 1,350-1,400 crore. While Crompton Greaves had bid at Rs 1,400 crore, Everstone Capital has offered Rs 1,300 crore for the company. 

(ET, Nov 15, 2017)


CBDT chairman to head Paradise Papers probe

Hours after the Paradise Papers leak of financial documents, pointing at possible illegal offshore dealings, the government swung into action and re-constituted a multi-agency panel led by the chairman of the income tax (I-T) department to carry out a probe into it.

The Central Board of direct Taxes (CBDT) has alerted its teams across the country to carry out investigations based on the returns filed by individuals on the list.

“We will match the information in the Paradise Papers to ascertain cases of tax evasion,” said CBDT Chairman Sushil Chandra, who will also head the multi-agency panel.  Besides I-T department officials, the panel comprises representatives of the Enforcement Directorate, the Reserve Bank of India, and the Financial Intelligence Unit.

(BS, Nov 07, 2017)


E-tailers’ global warehouses may come under tax net

Warehouses of e-commerce companies based in countries such as Australia, Japan, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and Russia may not be exempted from paying the  income tax in India once the multilateral instrument (MLI) to prevent  base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) comes into force.

BEPS refers to the reporting framework mooted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and signed by over 100 countries, including India to prevent exploiting gaps and mismatches in tax rules to shift profits by multinational companies (MNCs) artificially to low-tax regimes.

(BS, Oct 31, 2017)


Lessons from Doklam: Defence ministry okays big infra enhancement along Chinese border

With an aim to further strengthen the defence infrastructure along its frontier with China, India is focusing on the central sector of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) by planning to connect its primary passes and valleys. This sector is less developed in terms of border infrastructure as compared to the LAC’s western and eastern sectors and in some areas it takes four days by foot for soldiers to reach forward defence locations. 

It also has two disputed areas, including one, which has witnessed regular Chinese incursions in the past, therefore necessitating the setting up of adequate border roads to ensure quick mobilisation of troops and supplies. 

(ET, Oct 14, 2017)


Amazon to team up with Apple, Google for Alexa voice assistant

Amazon is willing to team up with competitions Apple and Alphabet’s Google if it would help improve customers’ experience with its Alexa voice-activated virtual assistant, an executive working on the platform said.

The online retailer, which is already working with Microsoft on productivity features for Alexa such as calendar interactions, will put the user first in pursuit of any other partnerships, said Toni Reid, Amazon’s vice president of Alexa and Echo devices, who has been on the team since 2014.

(BS, Oct 13, 2017)


TCS net falls 2%, but beats estimates

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) said its second-quarter profits dropped 2.16 per cent per-on-year to Rs.6,446 crore, while revenue grew 4.3 per cent to Rs.30,541 crore.  The revenue performance  was in line with Street expectations, and was helped by improved business  from clients but profits were  ahead of analysts’ estimates aided by better margins and other income.

(BS, Oct 13, 2017)


Cyient profit rises 15% to Rs.111 crore in Q2

Cyient Ltd., formerly Infotech Enterprises, has posted revenues of Rs.965.40 crore in the second quarter ended September 30,  2017, as against Rs.913.60 crore in the same quarter last year, showing a growth of 5.7 per cent.

The Hyderabad firm, which provides engineering services, registered a net profit of Rs.111.40 crore as against Rs.97.3 crore in the comparable quarter, a growth of 14.60 percent.

(Business Line, Oct 13, 2017)


GE Optimistic of Opportunities from Govt's Infrastructure Thrust

US conglomerate General Electric (GE) has doubled its Indian business in the past three years and is optimistic about opportunities from the government's infrastructure thrust and support from the global management team, which will soon be led by its former India CEO John Flannery.

GE, operating in India for more than a century, made rapid strides post 2010 after John Flannery took charge of the company's businesses in India and reversed its sluggish performance.

“When he was here, the business for GE grew sharply in India; and even after he moved on, our business has continued to grow. All the foundation that he set up, clearly yielded phenomenal results. For example in the last three years, the business has further doubled. It's been good,“ GE's President and CEO for South Asia Banmali Agrawala told ET.

(ET, June 15, 2017)


Scanning the New Rates for Printers

A distinction between printers and multifunctional printers, which have copying machines, scanners rolled into one, by making an exception for the latter in the 18% category in Goods and Services Tax has peeved the IT industry that has again knocked the doors of the government.

The last GST Council meeting on June 11 had decided to place printers in the 18% slab following representations from the industry after confusion over whether they would be in 28% slab or 18%.

(ET, June 16, 2017)


Tesla wants to Run on Sops here, at Least at the Start

Tesla's CEO Elon Musk said on Thursday that the electric carmaker has reached out to New Delhi seeking temporary relief on import curbs and penalties until a local factory is built, enhancing the probability of the company's imminent entry into the country.

Senior government officials in the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP) and the Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises told ETthat they have not received any communication from Tesla yet, but will examine the possibilities of extending any concessions once a formal proposal arrives. 

(ET, June 16, 2017)


Tejas Networks' IPO Subscribed 1.9 Times at Close

Optical network equipment manufacturer Tejas Networks' initial public offering to raise `776 crore ended on Friday with the issue subscribed 1.9 times.

The issue got bids for 3.2 crore shares against total issue size of 1.7 crore excluding the portion given to anchor investors.

(ET, June 17, 2017)


E-Vehicles Project FAME Moved to Niti Aayog

The cabinet secretariat has shifted the electric vehicles programme to Niti Ayog from the department of heavy industries as most ministries wanted to have a say in the high-profile mission.

The moving of FAME or Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid & Electric Vehicles programme to government's premier think tank will help synchronise efforts of the different departments of the government to move towards an all-electric fleet by 2030, a government official said.

“Most ministries were interested in anchoring the programme and were acting in silos,“ said the official. The shifting of the programme to Niti Ayog will expedite the move, the person added.

(ET, June 20, 2017)


Lockheed Martin Teams Up With Tata to Make F-16 Fighters in India

The defence arm of the Tata Group has signed an agreement with American firm Lockheed Martin to produce and export new generation F-16 fighter aircraft, potentially kick-starting a mega `Make in India' project days ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's first meeting with US President Donald Trump.

The deal, signed at the Paris Air Show, is subject to the condition that the F-16 Block 70 fighter jet emerges as the winner of an Indian Air Force competition to procure more than 100 single-engine fighters.

The Tata Advanced Systems Limited-Lockheed Martin combine will compete with Sweden's Saab, which will offer its Gripen fighter aircraft for the requirement.

Lockheed Martin will move its only operational line producing the F-16s from Texas to India if it wins the contract, as per exclusive details of the agreement available with ET. The American company also sees a $15 billion export potential for the jet to other customers in the region.

(ET, June 20, 2017)


Green Energy may Renew Job Hopes & Create 3L Jobs in 5 Yrs.

India's rapidly growing renewable energy sector will generate a significant number of new jobs apart from giving the country cleaner environment, a new study has forecast.

Around 300,000 such jobs in this sector will be created in the next five years, according to a study done by Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). The eventual job potential of the sector, according to the study, is 34,600 in wind power, 58,600 in ground mounted solar projects and 238,000 in rooftop solar projects.

Solar and wind energy employed more than 21,000 people in India in 2016-2017, and this is expected to more than double this year with 25,000 more jobs, it said.

Interestingly, setting up rooftop solar projects provides far more jobs than similar projects on the ground. The study estimated that installing 1MW of rooftop solar would create 25 jobs, while on ground each MW would require only three people. “The focus has been on ground mounted solar and the push to reduce tariffs although it is the rooftop sector which generates more jobs. So, the government will have to decide where it wants to focus,“ said Kanika Chawla, senior programme lead at CEEW.

The government has set a rooftop target of 40 GW by 2022 but so far less than 2 GW has been achieved.

(ET, June 21, 2017)


Mahindra Aerospace to Soon Launch 10-Seater Aircraft

In a boost to the Modi government's regional connectivity scheme (RCS), Mahindra Aerospace will soon start the process to launch a 10-seater aircraft in India.

“Our aircraft AIRVAN 10, a 10seat Single Engine Turbine aircraft, has received approvals from the Australian and US civil aviation authorities. We will soon apply to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) for approvals, which will pave our way for the launch of the aircraft in India,“ SP Shukla, chairman, Mahindra Aerospace, and Group President-Aerospace & Defence, Mahindra Group told ET.

The Rolls-Royce M250 powered AIRVAN 10 follows in the footsteps of the piston engine 8-seat AIRVAN 8, and the Turbo charged version of this aircraft, which now operate in 29 countries and have achieved high service times with the excellent reliability and low maintenance costs, the company said.

(ET, June 21, 2017)


Niti Aayog approves Rs. 18,000-crore project to increase speed of trains

The ambitious Rs.18,000-crore project for increasing train speeds on the Delhi-Mumbai and DelhiHowrah rail corridors has received Niti Aayog's approval, paving the way for the plan being put up for Cabinet clearance.

The mega project is meant to bring about a paradigm shift in rail operations enabling trains to run at 160 km per hour on the busiest routes on the Indian railway network. Aiming at reducing travel time between the three metropolises, the project envisages fencing off the entire 3,000 km on both routes, upgradation of signalling system, elimination of all level crossings and installing train protection warning system (TPWS), among other works to make trains run at an increased speed of 160 kmh.

(ET, June 21, 2017)


EESL to Raise $100m via Green Bonds

State-owned Energy Efficiency Services (EESL) plans to raise $100 million (about Rs.640 crore) by selling `green' and `masala' bonds on the London Stock Exchange (LSE), a top executive said.

Proceeds from the issue will be used to part-finance the company's massive Rs.6,000-crore capital expenditure plan for the current fiscal. “We are planning to raise Rs.4,800 crore by way of loans, which will come from bilateral loans, bonds and grants from institutions like the World Bank, while the rest would be met through internal accruals,“ Saurabh Kumar, managing director of EESL, told a news conference. EESL, a joint venture of NTPC, Power Finance Corp, Rural Electrification Corp and Power Grid Corp, was set up the power ministry to facilitate implementation of energy efficiency projects.

The proceeds from a green bond are tied to environmentally-focused initiative

(ET, June 22, 2017)


Thales Floats JV with Rel Defence to make Radars, Warfare Sensors

French defence electronics manufacturer Thales has announced that it is floating a joint venture company with Reliance Defence with shareholding of 49% and 51% respectively to set up an Indian supply chain for radars and electronic warfare sensors at a facility in Nagpur.

Industry executives told ET that Thales, a leading supplier to Dassault Aviation, maker of Rafale fighter aircraft, has to spend nearly $1billion (about Rs.6,451crore) in Indian defence production sector as part of its offset commitments for the deal signed last year to supply 36 Rafale jets to Indian Air Force.

(ET, June 22, 2017)


Toshiba Picks Bain-Japan Group as Preferred Chip Unit Buyers

Toshiba Corp has chosen a consortium of Bain Capital and Japanese government investors as the preferred bidder for its chip business, aiming to seal a deal worth some $18 billion by next week as it scrambles for funds to cover massive losses.

But prospects for a clean early resolution to the sale of the world's No. 2 producer of NAND flash chips remain unclear as Western Digital, Toshiba's chips business partner, has launched legal action to prevent a deal without its consent.

(ET, June 22, 2017)


GST will Spur Demand for PCs, Says HP

HP India said it expects demand for computers in India to pick up after the roll out of the new GST tax regime from next month, driven by small and medium businesses.

With tax slab set at 18% under GST, pricing of notebooks will not be impacted for buyers as the prevailing rates are about the same.

“However, we do expect GST to help tech companies as small and medium businesses will adopt more PCs and that is a big opportunity for players like us,“ he said. According to research firm IDC, the PC market in India grew by 8.5% to 2.16 million units in the January-March 2017 quarter from the year-ago period.

(ET, June 22, 2017)


PM's US Visit: Officials race against time to seal F-16 deal

Officials are working overtime to complete negotiations on moving the assembly line for the F-16 fighter jet to India to enable Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump to jointly make an announcement on the deal.

The announcement, if it comes when Modi meets Trump on June 26 at the White House, would be a good example of India's designation by the Obama Administration as a “major defence partner,“ especially if the deal is studded with significant transfers of technology .

It would show that “Make in India“ and “ America First“ can meet somewhere in the middle. 

(ET, June 23, 2017)


Indian Tech Startups get a space in Google's Sand Hill

Technology giant Google is deepening its engagements with startups in India and is working with a bunch of “highgrowth“ ventures as part of a global programme to mentor and deepen its technical engagement with the potential winners of tomorrow.

Over the past year, Google has been working with Indian startups like social networking site ShareChat, food delivery apps Swiggy and FreshMenu as well as utility applications UrbanClap and HealthifyMe, as a part of its global “Sand Hill“ programme, according to a top company executive.

(ET, June 06, 2017)


PM reviews GST rollout preparations

Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviewed the preparations for the rollout of the goods and services tax (GST) regime from July 1 and said it will be “a turning point“ in the country's economy.

Describing it as an “unprecedented“ moment in the country's history, he said the creation of the one-nation, one-market and one-tax system would greatly benefit the common man.

He took stock of various elements involved in the rollout and directed the officials that maximum attention be paid to cyber-security in IT systems linked to the GST, the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said in a statement.

(ET, June 06, 2017)


India's heaviest Rocket launches GSAT-19 Satellite

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Monday made a flawless launch of its Geostationary Launch Vehicle Mark III, doubling the capabilities of its most powerful launch vehicle.

The launch gave India the capability to put four-tonne communication satellites into orbit from Sriharikota. It also flight-tested with success the country's first fully indigenous cryogenic engine.

The passenger was GSAT-19, a 3,136-kg communication satellite with high throughput, which uses several new technologies for the first time, including an indigenous lithium-ion battery.

The launch vehicle has been designed to carry future human passengers, if the Indian government takes a decision to put humans into space. “It is a historic day,“ said ISRO chairman Kiran Kumar after the launch.

(ET, June 06, 2017)


NEC Corp to invest $10M in Analytics

Japanese technology firm NEC Corporation is investing $10 million to set up an analytics centre in Noida to strengthen its presence in the big data analytics market, with a special focus on telecom, manufacturing and BFSI verticals in India as well as the rest of the world.

The company is targeting more than $100 million in revenue from its Centre of Excellence for Analytics Platform & Solutions within three years.

With this launch, the company aims to be among the top three players in India's big data and analytics market, which is expected to grow eight times to $16 billion by 2020. The new centre will act as a one-stop shop for both customers and partners in telecom, retail, BFSI and manufacturing sectors.

It will initially focus on markets including India, Japan, Singapore, Philippines and Hong Kong, and then gradually expand services throughout APAC and other regions.

(ET, June 07, 2017)


Indian Aviation Sector to Get $25-B Investment by 2027

India, the third largest domestic air travel market, is estimated to see an investment of $25 billion in the next decade in the airports sector, a demand for 935 more planes and traffic growth of 13%, Morgan Stanley said.

Through the UDAN scheme to bring small cities and towns to the air transport network, the government is taking the right step to increase connectivity and also boost utilisation of airports, thereby helping those become more profitable, Morgan Stanley said in a report on Indian aviation.

The report said the share of air travel in air and rail travel combined in India will grow to 15.2% by 2027 from 7.9% now. “India's domestic air passenger traffic reached 100 million in 2016, behind only that of the US (719 million) and China (436 million) and ahead of Japan (97 million). We forecast a 13% domestic air traffic compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) 2016-26, the highest such rate of any key region globally and higher than India's 11% CAGR 2011-16,“ said the report, shamred exclusively with ET.

(ET, June 07, 2017)


Forex Reserves Hit New High at $381Billion

Foreign exchange reserves rose $2.4 billion during the week ending June 2 to reach a new high of $381 billion, as foreign portfolio investors continued to pour funds into Indian stocks and bonds. In the previous week, the reserves had declined by $547 million to $378.763 billion.

While foreign currency assets comprising US dollars, euro, yen and pound among others rose $2.7 billion, the value of gold in reserves dipped by $353 million.

The US dollar ended higher against the rupee at 64.2425 per dollar but the pound sterling finished lower at `. 82.0709 at the Interbank Foreign Exchange (forex) market here


Protectionism will Hurt Global Economy, says FM

Increasing trade protectionism will hurt the global economy and welfare of people, finance minister Arun Jaitley has warned.

“Questions are raised today in certain quarters about the global compact, which we have developed over the years multilateralism driving the rule-based flow of goods and services -to deliver growth, development and poverty reduction for all and achievement of global public good.

“The attempt to change the discourse from opening up and focusing on competitive advantage to increased protectionism will only hurt the global economy and welfare of people,“ Jaitley said in his address to the World Bank Development Committee in Washington.

“We need to bond together and renew our compact to protect the World from falling into spiral of slow economic growth, rising inequality and irreversibly altered climate, conflict and fragility,“ said the finance minister.

“I would thus like to call upon this august gathering today to reaffirm our full commitment to the mandate of the Development Committee and to deliver Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and our own twin goals.“

Noting that there is no doubt that the developing world needs large and growing resources for achieving SDGs and the twin goals of our institutions, he said this necessity is the underlying argument of the billions to trillions discourse.

“All the developing countries also know that mobilization of larger domestic resources and creating conditions for better flow of investment finance from both domestic and international private sector would be necessary for achieving their development ambitions,“ he said.

At the same time, it would be necessary for the multilateral system, especially the World Bank Group, to be stronger than ever to play a meaningful and decisive role in translating this development agenda into reality, he asserted.

(ET, Apr 24, 2017)


New Businesses Get Off to a Quick Start

Half a day for reserving the firm's name, and a third for incorporating it -India's push toward enhancing the `ease of doing business' is showing quick and tangible results.

Policy initiatives by the corporate affairs ministry of appear to have made it easier to start a business in the country: In February , it took two days to incorporate a company , while the procedure took just about a day in March. As many as 26 rules have been automated, five procedures for starting a business clubbed into one, and as many rules deleted as part of the latest government programme to drive entrepreneurship.

The successful implementation of e-governance initiatives, such as the MCA21 portal and SPICe (Simplified Proforma for Incorporating Company Electronically) forms, has ensured the regi stration of about 98,000 companies in FY-17, translating into a 60% increase compared with businesses registered the year ago.

Popularised under the broader programme of `government process re-engineering', these initiatives have “...resulted in speed, greater transparency, uniformi ty, and eradication of discretion“, according to the ministry.

“The time taken for processing company incorporation applications reduced drastically (bet ween 5 and 15 working days in June 2014), to an average of 0.6 working days in March 2017,“ the ministry said in a note on its website. “Similarly, the processing time for name availability applications has been brought down significantly to an average of 0.4 days in March 2017.“


Boosting manufacturing sector

Key thrust of the 'Make in India' programme would be on cutting down in delays in manufacturing project clearance, developing adequate infrastructure and making it easier for companies to do business in India. The Make in India initiative was launched in the year September 2014 primarily with the goal of transforming the country into a global manufacturing hub.

The idea was to encourage both global as well as domestic companies to set up manufacturing units within India. The aim was to raise the contribution of the manufacturing sector to 25 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP) by the year 2025 from the current 16 per cent.

It is being led by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India. The initiative is expected to create 100 million new jobs in India by 2022.

As part of the 'Make in India' initiative, the government has released separate guidelines for 25 sectors and has also created a website allowing investors to seek clarifications on policy matters within 72 hours.The key sectors identified under the programme include automobiles, aviation, chemicals, IT & BPM, pharmaceuticals, construction, defence manufacturing, electrical machinery, food processing, textiles and garments, ports, leather, media and entertainment, wellness, mining, tourism and hospitality, railways, automobile components, renewable energy, biotechnology, space, thermal power, roads and highways and electronics systems.

Rakesh Mehta, chairman, Mehta Equities and Mehta Commodities explains that there are several other initiatives announced by the central government which would further boost manufacturing in the 'Make in India' programme. “The Housing for All initiative or the affordable housing programme by the central government would generate huge employment opportunities for at least 270 allied industries related to construction and housing,“ Mehta explains.

According to him, the size of the affordable housing industry could be anywhere around Rs 25000 crore at present. “This is expected to reach around Rs 5 lakh cror by the year 2022, when the programme would be fully implemented. So allied industries like cable manufacturing, fixtures, cement and other raw materials would generate huge business and employment,“ he adds.

Since the launch of the 'Make in India' programme in September 2014, FDI inflows of $77 billion including an equity inflows of $56 billion has been received for the period October 2014 to March 2016. This represents about a 44 per cent increase in FDI equity inflows over the same corresponding period.

Anil Agrawal, Managing Director, Comfort Securities adds that the initiative is a step in the right direction for making the country into a manufacturing hub.

“The central government has been making efforts to give the much needed infrastructure push.Reforms like the single-window clearance where the manufacturers can get all the approvals under a single roof should be given top priority,“ Agrawal informs.

He further explains that small and medium entrepreneurs have a major role to play in the scheme.“Indian manufacturing SME sector currently contributes about 15-16 per cent to the country's GDP, but has the potential to be a game changer for the economy,“ he says.

China has slightly more number of SMEs than India.Their SME contribute about 60 per cent to the nation's GDP. This simply showcases the huge amount of potential that SME sector has.

Chandrakant Salunkhe, president of the SME Chamber of India explains that nearly 60 per cent of e the SMEs in India fall in the unorganized sector.

“Once this untapped potential becomes the source for growth of these units, the size of Indian GDP can surpass that of developed nations,“ he informs. The sector also contributes around 40 per cent to exports from India.

The government of India has recognised the SMEs as the priority sector and has also initiated several programmes like the Public Procurement Policy, Pradhan Mantri MUDRA Yojana, Digital India, Startup India, and Skill India.With these programmes its share can be expected to go up significantly in the next few years.

The announcement to implement GST Bill in 2017 is a landmark decision that will help solve long existing challenges prevalent in the current taxation system. For SMEs, GST bill will help eradicate indirect taxes, have more transparency of tax process, draw projections of production cost and gain easy access to new geographies for business expansion.

(ET, Apr 27, 2017)


Export-Reliant Cos may Take 4% Earnings Hit on Rising Re

A stronger rupee can help check inflation as it will pull down commodity prices, but export-reliant companies such as IT firms and drug makers are likely to take up to 4% hit on their earnings, industry insiders say.

The rupee has gained 5.6% against the US dollar since the beginning of the year, strengthening significantly after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) changed its policy stance on credit cost.

This is impacting companies that import less and export more including vehicle manufacturers, textile companies and metals firms, some of which are already looking to focus more on domestic market as the government seems comfortable with a stronger rupee.

“'That (the rupee appreciation) is something we need to watch out for... I think we want to keep in mind the trajectory of the rupee and see how we navigate,“ said MD Ranganath, chief financial officer at Infosys Technologies, the country's second-largest software exporter.

India's exports contribute 18% to India's gross domestic product (GDP). Out of the $435 billion exports, software exports contributes roughly $100 billion. 

(ET, Apr 27, 2017)


Focus to Grow Manufacturing: Kant

Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant on Friday said India needs to focus on identified sectors to grow its manufacturing.

“India has the potential to grow in as many as two dozen sectors. We need to focus on these sectors,“ Kant said at the CII annual session here. “India should not grow on the back of protectionism. Indian industry should be globally competitive.“

Kant has been a driving force behind the government's `Make in India' project. The idea is to increase the manufacturing sector's contribution to GDP to 25% from 16%.

According to Kant, manufacturing itself is undergoing digitisation, as a result of which all links in the manufacturing chain are not getting interlinked. “India needs to move away from labour arbitrage and upgrade to highly skilled jobs,“ he said.

According to Kant, Indian manufacturing needs global standards across sectors. “The Bureau of Indian Standards needs to be restructured to do standardisation that can match global standards,“ he said.

Reiterating that India needs to think bigger and step out, Kant said no country has made it big without penetrating global markets.

Kant is of the view that while automation and digitisation are here to stay, the country needs to bring about a change in the mindset of Indians right from the school level.

Urging industry and private players to take a lead in making manufacturing a success in India, Kant said “government is very inefficient and private sector must get itself out of the government“.

“We want energy and dynamism of private sector to drive manufacturing in India,“ Kant said, adding that the government is working towards redefining MSMEs. As per government estimates, only six states in the country across sectors are actually holding back Indi's growth.

ET, Apr 29, 2017)


Industry seeks to allay radiation fears

The telecom industry has dispelled fears that tower radiation causes health hazards and urged citizens not to panic as Indian emission norms are stricter than global standards. 

The Cellular Operators Association of India issued a statement a day after a media report said the Supreme Court had ordered Bharat Sanchar Nigam last month to deactivate an illegally installed tower in Gwalior within seven days, acting on a complaint by a man who claimed to be afflicted with cancer due to radiation exposure from the tower. 

The report relates to an interim -not final -order in only one of four cases that have been brought up in the apex court, said COAI. 

"The industry appeals to the citizens and the public to not panic and read the interim order in its entirety. There are four EMF (electromagnetic fields)-related cases which have been clubbed together. The interim Supreme Court order relates to only one of them, whereas cell towers included in the other cases were left untouched," said Rajan Mathews, director general of COAI. 

Eight high courts have found that radiation emanating from mobile towers is not hazardous for human health, he added. 
(ET, Apr 13, 2017)


Exports Increase by 27.6% in March, Imports up 45%

 India's merchandise exports increased at the fastest pace in almost six years in March led by an overall rise in shipments across sectors even as a steeper rise imports due to firmer commodity prices widened the trade deficit. 

Buoyed by petroleum, textiles, engineering goods and gems and jewellery, exports zoomed 27.59% in March to $29.2 billion but a 45.25% increase in imports on the back of higher gold imports led to a trade gap of $10.4 billion. 

This is the seventh consecutive month of rise in exports this year. Twenty-five out of 30 sectors showed an increase in exports led by iron ore. India's imports in March were $39.6 billion of which gold imports were $4.1 billion, up 329% year-on-year. Imports too rose at a six-year high. 

"In continuation with the double digit growth exhibited by exports during February 2017, exports during March 2017 have shown a significant growth...Overall the trade balance has im proved," commerce and industry ministry said in a statement. 

However, the robust monthly data failed to boost annual exports to the $300-billion mark. 

India exported goods worth $274.6 billion in 2016-17, 4.7% higher than $262.2 billion in FY16.Trade deficit in 2016-17 was $105.7 billion. 

"With these numbers, we expect exports to touch $325 billion this year. We have political stability, reforms are underway and measures on ease of doing business will start showing results," said Ajay Sahai, director general of the Federation of Indian Export Organisations. 
(ET, Apr 14, 2017)