Week ending January 14, 2002


News on Ports

Port Workers plan a token nation-wide strike on January 22 The port workers all over the country have planned to go on a one-day token strike on January 22 in protest against the government’s decision to go ahead with privatisation of operations in port. The strike call given by various all-India port and dock workers’ unions is expected to bring work to a standstill at all major ports in the country.

News on Shippings

Promoter’s equity up to 22.42 in Great Eastern Shipping According to latest shareholding pattern filed with the Stock Exchanges, the promoters’ equity in the Great Eastern Shipping Company has increased by 3.28 per cent to 22.42 per cent. The increase in promoter’s equity is believed to have come through “the creeping acquisition route” under the first buy back scheme. As on December 31, 2001, the share holding pattern of GE Shipping showed that promoters hold 22.42 per cent stake, institutional investors 19.71, private corporate bodies (PCBs) at 5.05 per cent, NRIs/Overseas Corporate Bodies (OCBs) at 0.61 per cent, global depository receipts (GDRs) represent 1.55 per cent, besides International Finance Corporation (IFC) holding at 8.64 per cent and equity held by Indian public at 42.02 per cent.

Ministry of Shipping favours 40 per cent depreciation rate for vessels The Union Ministry of Shipping has reportedly favoured fixing of a higher rate of depreciation upto 40 per cent for the ocean-going vessels in the forthcoming budget for 2002-2003. The raising of the depreciation rate to 40 per cent has been a long-standing demand of the Indian shipping industry. The Shipping ministry will also be seeking greater tax concessions for the industry, including introduction of tonnage tax for the shipping companies. Presently, Rakesh Mohan panel is exploring the modalities of introducing a tonnage-based taxation system, to replace the present corporate tax/MAT regime. The panel report will be submitted to the Union Finance Ministry in a week’s time for further action.

Government hopes to raise Rs.800 crore through SCI sell-off The government reportedly is planning to raise Rs. 800 crores through proposed sale of its equity in the Shipping Corporation of India (SCI). Following the announcement of the decision to disinvest, the SCI has already floated tenders for the appointment of global consultants, who will be entrusted the responsibility for valuation of the company. As a part of the disinvestments process, the government also plans to give 3 per cent of its equity to employees. The announcement inviting the expression of interest (EOI) in buying the 51 per cent stake has also been made and as per the schedule fixed the process is likely to be completed by the third week of February. After the decision to disinvest SCI equity, the government is also believed to be considering similar disinvestments moves in respect of other public sector undertakings in the maritime sector, like Dredging Corporation of India (DCI), Cochin Shipyard Limited and Hindustan Shipyard Limited.

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News on Logistics

Konsortium Logistik plans to enter SCM sector in India The Malaysia-based Konsortium Logistik Berhad Group of Companies, which currently has equity stake of 26 per cent in Kakinada Seaports Ltd., and another 40 per cent stake in New Delhi-based Associate Container Terminals Ltd., is believed to be further scouting for opportunities in the supply chain management (SCM) sector. The company has identified large projects in the automotive, oil/gas and retail distribution as likely areas of investment.

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