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Price Waterhouse banned from audit for 2 years

Price Waterhouse banned from audit for 2 years The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) late on Wednesday banned Price Waterhouse (PW) from providing audit services to listed companies and market intermediaries for two years in the Satyam fraud case. Two PW partners have been banned for three years. The regulator also imposed a disgorgement of Rs 130.9 million on Price Waterhouse, and two of its chartered accountants —S Gopalakrishnan and Srinivas Talluri.The three entities also have to pay 12 per cent interest on the disgorgement amount since January 7, 2009, in 45 days from the date of the order. Further, it said that no listed company or intermediary registered with Sebi to be engaged with any audit firm associated with the PW network for issuing any certificate with respect to compliance of statutory obligations which Sebi is competent to administer and enforce, under various laws for a period of two years. These entities have been charged under Sebi´s prohibition of Fraudule…

Govt relaxes FDI norms for AI, retail

Govt relaxes FDI norms for AI, retail Foreign Airlines can buy up to 49% stake in Air India & 100% FDI for single-brand retail via automatic route Just days ahead of the World Economic Forum in Davos, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to showcase India´s potential before global chief executive officers and political leaders, the Union Cabinet has relaxed rules for attracting foreign investments across sectors such as aviation, retail, and construction.

This is the fourth time in the past three years that the government is tweaking the foreign direct investment (FDI) rulebook.In a significant step, the Cabinet on Wednesday permitted FDI in stateowned carrier Air India, which is up for disinvestment.Foreign airlines or any other foreign investor can now put in up to 49 per cent in Air India, thereby making it easier for the government to divest its holding in the airline.

The government is expected to invite expression of interest for Air India after the Union Budget, though …

World Bank pegs India´s GDP growth higher than FY18 Advance Estimates

World Bank pegs India´s GDP growth higher than FY18 Advance Estimates The World Bank has pegged India´s economic growth at 6.7 per cent in 201718, slightly higher than 6.5 per cent estimated by the statistics office.For the next financial year, the growth would accelerate to 7.3 per cent, overtaking China´s at 6.4 per cent in 2018, the multilateral agency said. In its 2018 Global Economics Prospect, the World Bank projected India´s economic growth to be 7.5 per cent in the two years each after 201819. In these two years, China´s growth rate will drop to 6.3 and 6.2 per cent, respectively.The Central Statistics Office on Friday came out with Advance Estimates which showed that India´s gross domestic product (GDP) growth would fall to 6.5 per cent in 201718, the lowest in the Modi government´s first four years. But, the World Bank said India was estimated to have grown at 6.7 per cent in 201718, despite initial setbacks from demonetisation and the goods and services tax (GST). Incidentally…

Sebi team working on relaxation for IBC firms

Sebi team working on relaxation for IBC firms Easing of delisting rules and exemption from public shareholding norms among key proposals Market regulator Sebi has formed a team to look into securities law changes, after advent of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code. The team will collect inputs from all stakeholders and examine feasible proposals. The final report is expected by March. The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has formed a team to look into securities law changes, after advent of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC). The team will collect inputs from stakeholders and examine feasibility of proposals. Sources said doing away with the tedious reverse book building process (RBB) for delisting of IBC companies, exemption from minimum public shareholding (MPS) norms and relaxation from some compliance requirements will be among the recommendations considered. The final report is expected by March. The move comes after Sebi, the markets regulator, received requests fr…

FDI relaxation for real estate brokerages to boost investment: Experts

FDI relaxation for real estate brokerages to boost investment: Experts The government's decision to allow 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) under automatic route in the real-estate broking services is expected to boost the segment as this would enable international brokerage companies to invest in Indian counterparts and also set up their own subsidiaries here. The move, according to experts, would help in formalizing the largely unorganized segment, create more jobs and offer professional services to property buyers."The Cabinet, through an amendment to the FDI policy has clarified that Real Estate broking services would not be classified as Real Estate business. Accordingly, companies undertaking such activities are eligible for 100% FDI under automatic route. This is a welcome clarification especially given the number of startups in this space offering innovative broking products," said Bhairav Dalal, Partner - Real Estate Tax, PwC India. According to ANAROCK Property …

Cash deal limit may be reduced under PMLA

Cash deal limit may be reduced under PMLA Present limit of Rs 1 million to be lowered substantially to curb money laundering The Centre is planning to tighten the anti-money laundering rules pertaining to the “reporting and maintenance of record” by mandating reporting entities to furnish information of entities dealing in cash above a certain amount, a move to curb money laundering. Under the current Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) rules, such reporting is required for all cash transactions of value exceeding Rs 1 million, all cross-border wire transfers of more than Rs 500,000, and all purchase and sale of immovable property of Rs 5 million or more.

Sources say the cash transaction limit could be reduced to as low as Rs 200,000.The reporting provisions under PMLA impose obligations on reporting entities like banks, financial institutions, and intermediaries such as stockbrokers to verify the identity of clients, maintain records, and furnish information to the financial intell…

Higher direct tax mop up gives govt fiscal relief

Higher direct tax mop up gives govt fiscal relief A mid fiscal worries, the government has got some relief on the direct taxes front, primarily due to lower refunds.Direct tax collection rose 18.2 per cent till December last year.The target of direct tax collection growth was 15.7 per cent for this financial year, according to Budget Estimates. The collection (after refunds) rose to Rs 6.56 trillion till December.This represented 67 per cent of the Budget Estimates of Rs 9.8 trillion.The refunds stood at Rs 1.12 trillion, 23 per cent lower than last year´s Rs 1.38 trillion. The increase would give some leeway to the government, which faces the challenge of reining in its fiscal deficit at 3.2 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) due to subdued goods and services tax (GST) collection, transfer of surplus by the Reserve Bank of India and telecom spectrum receipts.The government is looking atashortfall of about Rs 500 billion from these heads. The 23 per cent drop in refunds was the reas…