“The ministry of petroleum and natural gas may like to take precautions to ensure that the audit of expenditure prior to adjustment to the account of Reliance Industries be effectively done to ensure that only admitted items are approved,” deputy CAG Rekha Gupta wrote to the ministry on 3rd October
New Delhi: The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) has advised the oil ministry to allow Reliance Industries (RIL) to recover expenditure on its eastern offshore KG-D6 field only after it has been audited, reports PTI.
Stating that the CAG’s letter to the ministry was to “flag the critical issues so as to facilitate adequate precautionary action”, deputy CAG Rekha Gupta said in the 3rd October communiqué summed by the CAG report on KG-D6 that was tabled in Parliament last month.
The letter asked the ministry to review the decision to allow RIL to retain entire 7,645 sq km KG-DWN-98/3 (KG-D6) block in the Bay of Bengal after the giant Dhirubhai-1 and 3 gas finds were made in 2001 besides seeking review of 10 contracts, including the eight awarded to Aker Group for the MA oilfield in the same block, on a single-bid basis.
But it did not mention of CAG report calling for an audit of increase in expenditure proposed by Cairn on its Mangala Rajasthan oilfields from $1.24 billion to $3.34 billion.
It also did not mention the $201.54 million expenditure that was disallowed for cost recovery by CAG.
“The ministry of petroleum and natural gas may like to take precautions to ensure that the audit of expenditure prior to adjustment to the account of this operator be effectively done to ensure that only admitted items are approved,” Ms Gupta wrote to the ministry on 3rd October.
The CAG had audited expenses RIL incurred during 2006-07 and 2007-08, and spending incurred from 2008-09 onwards is to be covered in future audits.
As practice, operators are allowed to recover from sale of hydrocarbons, only that part of investment which has been audited. Even in case of RIL’s KG-D6 block, $5.26 billion out of $5.69 billion invested till 31st March was allowed to be cost recovered only after audit.
The CAG audit of KG-D6 was the second audit and expenses had previously been audited by a government appointed auditor.
“Permitting inadmissible items may lead to legal complication if recovery has to be undertaken after audit by the CAG,” Ms Gupta wrote.
Ms Gupta said there was considerable scope for improvement in the management of exploration and production. “We also found numerous deficiencies in compliance and control issues with reference to the provisions of the Production Sharing Contract (PSC) by the ministry/Director of Hydrocarbon (DGH).”
“Government representatives should protect Government of India’s financial interests (not just technical perspective) at the time of review and approval of development plans in the Management Committee (MC),” she wrote.
Ms Gupta said a review of the award of 10 specific contracts, of which eight were awarded to Aker Group companies, on the basis of a single financial bid may be undertaken. “The expertise, ownership pattern and experience of the Aker group needs to be ascertained.”
CAG said the entire PSC process is designed to ensure that the private contractors fully explore the contract area within designated timelines, relinquish areas where hydrocarbon prospects appear poor in a phased manner, and retain only those areas where hydrocarbon discoveries are made, relinquishing the remaining area for re-allocation to other potential bidders.
“Therefore, the stipulated timelines and processes in the PSC for relinquishment of contract area should, under no circumstances, be relaxed,” it said.
“The discovery and development areas should be rigorously delineated, keeping strictly to the discoveries made through exploratory and appraisal well drilling and proper delineation of reservoir boundaries,” she wrote.
Nifty will target 5,130 and above. Support is at 5,060
The market closed 2.50% higher on support from IT and technology stocks following better-than-expected second quarter earnings from Infosys. Weak industrial data for August was ignored by investors as the market kept the momentum going, barring minor hiccups in noon trade. The Nifty made a huge move today to reach a zone which may see the index moving upwards. However, for this to be sustained, the index will have to keep itself above 5,060 and should try to close above 5,130. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) saw a volume of 56.17 crore shares, which was above its 10-day moving average.
The market opened higher on better-than-expected second quarter earnings report from IT bellwether Infosys, which was announced this morning. The Nifty opened above its psychological level of 5,000 at 5,020, a gain of 46 points, and the Sensex rose 124 points to resume trade at 16,660. IT, technology, metal and banking stocks supported early gains.
The market continued to accrue additional gains in the morning session, brushing aside a fall in the industrial output numbers for August. However, profit-booking at higher levels and a weak opening of the European markets following the Slovak parliament’s failure to approve the expansion of the European Financial Stability Facility resulted in the market paring some of its gains. The market fell to its lows at around 1.00pm with the Nifty retracing itself to 4,998 and the Sensex falling to 16,608.
All was not lost as buying in select stocks and the European indices recovering from the early hiccups pushed the market to a higher trajectory once more. The market hit its intraday high towards the end of trade with the Nifty scaling 5,110 and the Sensex touching 16,977. The market closed near those levels with the Nifty closing with a gain of 125 points at 5,099 and the Sensex surging 422 points to settle at 16,958.
The advance-decline ratio on the NSE was 1195:484.
Among the broader indices, the BSE Mid-cap index gained 1.40% and the BSE Small-cap index rose 1.18%.
All sectoral indices settled in the positive. The top gainers were BSE IT (up 5.21%), BSE TECk (up 3.83%), BSE Bankex (up 3.38%), BSE Realty (up 2.97%) and BSE Capital Goods (up 2.44%).
Infosys (up 6.83%) topped the Sensex list on posting better-than-expected second quarter results. It was followed by Jindal Steel (up 6.08%), State Bank of India (up 6.07%), TCS (up 3.66%) and Sterlite Industries (up 3.63%). Coal India (down 1.71%), Tata Power (down 1.56%) and Bharti Airtel (down 0.20%) were the losers on the index.
The Nifty gainers were led by Infosys (up 7.05%), SBI (up 6.54%), Tata Motors (up 5.23%), Jindal Steel (up 4.62%) and Kotak Bank (up 4.50%). The major losers were Coal India (down 2.53%), Tata Power (down 1.41%), BPCL (down 0.96%), Bharti Airtel (down 0.76%) and Ranbaxy (down 0.45%).
The Asian pack ended mostly higher led by China, following reports that the country’s sovereign wealth fund has been supporting banking shares, which have seen a sharp fall in their values.
The Shanghai Composite jumped 3.04%; the Hang Seng rose 1.04%; the Jakarta Composite climbed 2.95%; the KLSE Composite gained 1.19%; the Straits Times advanced 1.66% and the Seoul Composite inched up 0.81%. Bucking the trend, the Nikkei 225 lost 0.40% and the Taiwan Weighted shed 0.22%.
Back home, foreign institutional investors were net buyers of stocks worth Rs114.15 crore on Tuesday. Similarly, domestic institutional investors pumped in Rs108.17 crore into equities.
Hinduja flagship company Ashok Leyland is set to increase the prices of its commercial vehicles across models by 1% within a month. While the company did not specify the reasons for the proposed price hike, automobile companies have in the recent past been faced with high raw material and input costs. Ashok Leyland gained 1.02% to close at Rs24.85 on the NSE.
Private sector shipbuilder Pipavav Defence & Offshore Engineering (formerly Pipavav Shipyard) is betting big on exports to geographies like Latin America, Indonesia and Africa. Out of the total order book of around $1.5 billion, $710 million comprise exports as of now for the company. The stock fell 1.13% to close at Rs83.20 on the NSE.
Kale Consultants, a leading solutions provider to the airline and travel industry has unveiled a unique SIS Compliance Package for airlines. The package is a first-of-its-kind with standalone solutions; REVERA Interline billing solutions for passenger interline billing and FINESSE MBS for miscellaneous billing. This package will help airlines migrate to the SIS enabled world with ease. The stock settled 2.77% higher at Rs79.90 on the NSE.
Equity mutual funds record Rs1,440 crore in September inflows after a great August, thanks to the success of systematic investment plans
Much to the relief of fund managers, the equity mutual fund schemes have seen net inflows for the second successive month. According to statistics available from industry body Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI), pure equity funds witnessed a net inflow of Rs1,440 crore during the month. As compared to the last month, which saw equity inflows of Rs1,986 crore, September inflows registered a 27% drop. Almost 98% of this amount was from existing schemes. This has taken the overall net inflows in FY12 to Rs2,610 crore, against a net outflow of a massive Rs15,361 crore during the same period last year.
This large positive inflow belies the mood prevailing among investors and the marketplace. The market is in a bearish mode (the Sensex has fallen by 21% from its all-time high in November 2010 at 21,000 to around 17,000 now).
Still, in such a scenario, a lot of investment is happening through mutual funds. This shows investor maturity and the awareness of the concept of systematic investment. Earlier, money used to flow in only in a rising market. But it could well be that the idea of getting wealthy through systematic investment plans (SIPs) has started penetrating the minds of investors.
Despite having a net equity inflow of Rs2,557 crore for the quarter ended September 2011, the average assets under management (AUM) fell by 4% to Rs712,742 crore for the quarter ended September 2011, as compared with Rs743,502 crore for the quarter ended June 2011. As per a CRISIL report, fall in the average AUM can be attributed to a steep 13% fall in the domestic equity markets (S&P CNX Nifty). Further, higher redemption by corporates on account of higher advance tax outflow during the July-September quarter, as against the previous quarter, also resulted in the decline.
The bulk of equity assets are coming into well-performing funds. According to a business newspaper, HDFC Mutual Fund, one of the best-performing fund houses, receives Rs600 crore by way of SIP money every month.
The breakup for various funds for September 2011, available from AMFI, indicates that there was an outflow of Rs15,263 crore from income funds; balanced funds saw a net inflow of Rs99 crore; liquid/money market funds had an outflow of Rs41,078 crore; gilt funds also had an outflow of Rs117 crore; gold ETF (exchange-traded) funds received a net inflow of Rs988 crore; whereas other ETFs saw an outflow of Rs186 crore, and fund of funds (FoFs) investing overseas had an outflow of Rs56 crore.
One of the reasons for the net equity inflows consecutively in the last two months may be because mutual fund houses are leaving no stone unturned to keep distributors in good humour. Asset Management Companies (AMCs) are paying a higher upfront fee to distribution subsidiaries of foreign & private banks nowadays to drive ‘exclusive sales’ of their schemes, mainly equity schemes. This commission is in addition to the upfront and annual trail fees that mutual funds pay distributors for selling their schemes.