Banking
Geojit to offer investment services to NRI clients of SBI

NRIs can visit any SBI branch in the Middle East to open accounts for repatriable and non-repatriable investments to commence investing in Indian stock market

Mumbai: Brokerage firm Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services signed an agreement with State Bank of India to offer portfolio investment services to non-resident Indians (NRIs), reports PTI.

The facility is targeted at NRIs in the Middle East and they can purchase and sell shares or convertible debentures on the domestic stock exchanges, subject to limits prescribed by the RBI, the firms said in a joint statement.

NRIs can visit any SBI branch in the Middle East to open accounts for repatriable and non-repatriable investments to commence investing in stock market, it said.

The customers can trade through the offices of joint ventures in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ras al-Khaimah, Al Ain, Riyadh, Muscat, Damam and Jeddah.

“At a time when the rupee has depreciated and valuations are relatively inexpensive, this service from Geojit BNP Paribas and SBI will be of immense use to NRIs to grow their wealth through Indian stock market,” Geojit BNP Paribas managing director CJ George said.

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Fight against corruption: Not many ready to undertake UNCAC study

Few firms have shown interest in assessing government's performance against corruption and many have asked to extend the deadline complicity and the wide gamut of responsibilities

New Delhi: The Indian government's move to review its fight against corruption by independent experts has received a cold response as not many of them have expressed interest to undertake a self evaluation study, reports PTI.

 

Official sources said the government has extended the last date for submitting a detailed proposal by this month-end from concerned agencies.

 

The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) had invited expression of interest (EoI) last month from registered Indian law schools, law firms, academic or research organisations to undertake the study which is a mandatory obligation of the country under the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC).

 

UNCAC, which acts as a universal legal instrument to deal with the menace of corruption globally, was ratified by India on 9th May last year.

 

"There has not been a favourable response from the concerned people. We have decided to extend the due date by four weeks, which is by the end of this month", a source said.

 

However, when contacted a senior official dealing with the matter, wishing anonymity said a few agencies have requested for extension of the date, which was 31st May earlier, citing complicity and the wide gamut of responsibilities mentioned in the EoI.

 

As per the proposal, a selected agency will get 36 weeks for the project.

 

The task of the selected firm will be to find out whether Indian domestic laws are fully or partly compliant or non-compliant with the Convention. It would be expected to study, analyse and assess the requirements for compliance under the Convention by looking at the relevant documents.

 

The agency will also be mandated to find gaps and interact with ministries of Home Affairs, External Affairs, Law & Justice, Corporate Affairs; Central Vigilance Commission and CBI to gather inputs or clarifications while meeting requirements laid down under the UNCAC.

 

However, two major areas - bribery of foreign public officials and bribery in the private sector - will not be part of the proposed study.

 

UNCAC is an international legal instrument to deal with corruption and imposes obligations on member states to provide legal and administrative measures for facilitating recovery of assets in trans border corruption and among others, promoting international co-operation in combating trans-border graft through measures like mutual legal assistance, extraditions and joint investigations.

 

India is among the 160 nations who have either ratified or acceded to the UNCAC provisions.

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Government to announce new guidelines to revive SEZs

Exports from SEZs stood at Rs3.65 lakh crore in FY12. With investment of Rs2.02 crore, these zones provide employment to over 8.45 lakh

The government had imposed minimum alternative tax (MAT) and dividend distribution tax (DDT) on SEZs in 2010-11, which were earlier exempted from almost all levies.

Admitting that due to imposition of MAT and DDT, there has been a "visible slowdown" in growth of export from SEZs, Commerce and Industry Minister of India Anand Sharma on Tuesday said a new set ofguidelines would be announced to make the SEZ policy more buoyant.

"We have undertaken a comprehensive assessment of the SEZ Scheme to re-visit certain aspects of the policy and operational framework and after concluding the inter- ministerial consultations, we will be able to come out with newguidelines to make the operation of the SEZ policy more buoyant," he said, while announcing the supplementary Foreign Trade Policy.

The direct tax codes (DTC) being considered by Parliament proposes to do away with the income tax exemption given to them and instead link tax sops to investments made in them. Profit-linked benefits were the main attraction of the SEZ scheme.

The initial phase of SEZ scheme, launched in 2006, saw developers lining up in big numbers for projects. It was also seen as a real estate opportunity.

At present, over 100 developers are seeking more time from the government to execute their projects and over 50 developers have surrendered the projects.

Exports from SEZs stood at Rs3.65 lakh crore in 2011-12. With investment of Rs2.02 crore, these zones provide employment to over 8.45 lakh.

Overseas shipments from the 153 operational tax free havens have come down to 12 per cent in the country's total exports from about 30 per cent in the previous years.

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COMMENTS

Vaidya

4 years ago

I feel even a small drop in corruption, say of about 10% to 20%, will make a lot of difference. In Pune, some adhesive used for making paper bags was purchased at Rs.80/- per k.g. where as the market RETAIL price was Rs.7/- a k.g.

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