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Air Costa suspends all flights till March 15

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Air Costa

Bengaluru, March 6 : Cash-strapped regional airline Air Costa has suspended its operations till March 15 for operational reasons, said a company official on Monday.

“We have suspended our services since February 28 and stopped bookings till March 15 for operational reasons. We will announce our revival plans on March 15,” Air Costa’s Marketing Vice-President Kavi Chaurasia told IANS from Andhra Pradesh’s Vijayawada.

The three-year-old feeder airline was operating daily service to eight cities, including six in the southern region – Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Tirupathi, Vijayawada and Vizag and two in the western region – Ahmedabad and Jaipur.

“We have grounded our two Embraer aircraft. We are talking to investors for infusion of investments as we are facing fund crunch,” admitted Chaurasia.

Though the low-cost airline had four Embraer jets with a capacity to fly 112 passengers in each of them, two are stalled at the Hyderabad airport after they were impounded by GE Capital Aviation Services for defaulting on payments.

The budget carrier has about 600 employees.

According to the information with the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the Vijayawada-based airline was founded by L.P. Bhaskara Rao, a realtor.

The airline had reported Rs 130 crore loss on revenue of Rs 327 crore for fiscal 2015-16.

DGCA data for December showed Air Costa had the highest number of cancellations at 13.65 per cent and its market share was 0.6 per cent.

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Adani Ports Q2 net profit at Rs 614 cr falls 38%

Total revenue for the quarter in consideration, slipped by Rs 39.8 crore to Rs 2,922.32 from Rs 2,962.12 in the same period last year.

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File Pic : Gautam Adani

Mumbai, Oct 23 : Adani Ports on Tuesday reported a 38.36 per cent decline in its net profit for the second quarter ending September.

The company said in a stock exchange filing that its profit after tax (PAT) for the second quarter declined to Rs 614.23 crore, from Rs 997.04 crore in the same period last year.

In addition, it reported a sequential decline of 11.92 per cent in PAT from Rs 697.40 crore earned in the previous quarter.

Total revenue for the quarter in consideration, slipped by Rs 39.8 crore to Rs 2,922.32 from Rs 2,962.12 in the same period last year.

“Indian rupee depreciated by 5 per cent in Q1FY19 and by 6 per cent in Q2FY19. Thus, we have provided mark to market loss of Rs 953 cr in H1FY19 compared to a mark to market loss of Rs 47 cr in H1FY18 on our foreign currency loans. This has resulted in reporting lower PBT (profit before tax) and PAT,” a company statement said.

Adani Ports stocks closed on Tuesday Rs 318.25 a share, up by Rs 3.55, or 1.33 per cent, from its previous close on BSE.

IANS

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India’s export of organic products up 39% in 2017-18

The major demand is for oilseeds, cereals and millets, sugar, fruit juice concentrates, tea, spices, pulses, dry fruits, medicinal plant products, according to the authority.

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New Delhi, Oct 23 (IANS) India exported 458 thousand tonnes of organic products worth $515 million in 2017-18 — around 39 per cent higher from the previous year, said Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority in a release on Tuesday.

APEDA said there is “constant increase” in the demand for Indian organic food products from countries such as the US, European Union, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, Israel, South Korea, Vietnam, New Zealand and Japan.

The major demand is for oilseeds, cereals and millets, sugar, fruit juice concentrates, tea, spices, pulses, dry fruits, medicinal plant products, according to the authority.

Under the National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP), the area under cultivation during 2017-18 was 3.56 million hectares.

Though the US, European Union and Canada were the biggest buyers of organic products, many others such as Israel, Vietnam, Mexico have started showing interest now, said Tarun Bajaj, General Manager, APEDA.

“The equivalency granted by European Commission and Switzerland for unprocessed plant products and the conformity assessment granted by USDA has played a pivotal role in increased export to these countries,” the release quoted Bajaj as saying.

“India is also negotiating with Canada, South Korea, Taiwan and Japan for equivalency with NPOP.”

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Absence of bond market main reason for India’s banking crisis: CAG

The gross NPAs in the Indian banking system have accumulated to a staggering Rs 10 lakh crore, around 90 per cent of which is accounted for by state-run banks.

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New Delhi, Oct 23 : The major reason for the crisis being faced by banks is the absence of a developed bond market in the country, the official auditor said on Tuesday.

Speaking at the launch of the Indian School of Public Policy here, Comptroller and Auditor General Rajiv Mehrishi maintained that the root-cause of the banking crisis was neither the scams nor the non-performing assets (NPAs) but a result of state-run banks being constrained to lend for long-gestation projects, many of which had stalled due to various factors.

“Of course, the thefts, the NPAs have all contributed to the banking crisis, but it originates elsewhere…India has no bond market, so banks have been forced to lend for long-gestation infrastructure projects which have then run into trouble,” he said.

“The absence of a bond market has been the major cause of the country’s banking crisis.”

The gross NPAs in the Indian banking system have accumulated to a staggering Rs 10 lakh crore, around 90 per cent of which is accounted for by state-run banks.

“This asset-liability mismatch is due to the lack of debate on public policy in India,” the CAG said.

On the various scams in public sector banks that have come to light, the national auditor held the banking regulator Reserve Bank of India responsible for the systemic lapses.

“What was the regulator doing all this time…is he, or is he not, accountable for the lapses that led to the scams,” Mehrishi asked.

Industry chamber Assocham said earlier this month that the successful resolution of the NPA issues through the new Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) will help deepen India’s corporate bond market that is highly concentrated in AAA-rated bonds.

Citing its study jointly conducted with rating agency Crisil, the industry chamber had said: “India’s corporate bond market, which contributes 17 per cent to the country’s GDP and is highly concentrated in the AAA-rated bonds, is expected to change once the IBC brings about successful resolution of stressed assets in a time-bound manner.”

It said that countries like Brazil, Russia, China and the UK had taken steps to reform the bankruptcy laws which, along with other structural reforms, led to a significant growth in the corporate bond market within their financial markets.

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