Govt pegs sugar output for 2010-11 season at 24.5 MT

New Delhi: India's sugar output in the 2010-11 season is estimated at 24.5 million tonnes (MT) against the annual domestic demand of 22.5-23 MT, the government today informed Rajya Sabha, reports PTI.

"The production of sugar during current sugar season (October-September) 2010-11 is provisionally estimated at about 24.5 MT against the provisionally estimated demand of about 22.5-23 MT," minister of state for food and agriculture K V Thomas said in a written reply to Rajya Sabha.

India, the world's second largest sugar producer, had produced 19 MT in the 2009-10 season.

The government's initial estimate is 1 MT lower than the industry's forecast of 25.5 MT for the 2010-11 season.

The minister said there is no proposal to impose import duty on raw and refined sugar before 31 December 2010. Early last year, the Centre had permitted duty-free import of raw and refined sugar up to 31st December this year. India imported about 6 MT of sugar to meet the domestic demand.

On decontrol of the sugar sector, Mr Thomas said: "No decision has been taken by the central government to decontrol the present controls over the sugar sector."

The government fixes the Fair and Remunerative Price (FRP) of sugarcane every season. FRP is the minimum price that mills have to pay to cane farmers for buying their produce.

Besides, it also fixes the sugar quota to be sold every month in the open market as well as through ration shops.


IRDA gives clean chit to LIC in transfer of profits case

Hyderabad: The Insurance Regulatory Authority of India (IRDA) today gave a clean chit to Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), the largest insurance company in India, in the case of alleged violation of rules pertaining to transfer of profits among its various schemes, reports PTI.

The insurance watchdog earlier said it would launch an investigation in to the books of LIC pertaining to 2009-10.

IRDA chairman J Hari Narayan said there is no violation committed by the LIC and it was just an actuarial shortage as to the current actuarial estimates.

An investigation done earlier by IRDA revealed that there was a deficit of around Rs14,000 crore in one account covering annuity policies that offered high assured returns.

"This is not a real cash shortage.... They will project the gap between the liabilities and assets assuming a certain pattern of liability and assuming a certain generation of income from the investments made," he told media persons after a function organised by IIRM here.

He said the LIC generates a lot of surplus which technically belong to shareholders.

"The LIC is used to meet the shortfall with this cash flow. It is entirely possible in the years to come that this imbalance will be rectified. So, at the moment it is not a cause of concern and these figures are disclosed in their annual account," Mr Hari Narayan said.

LIC, in a statement, earlier said the deficit is only a notional actuarially estimated figure for a period of over 20 years and it is different from a financial deficit or an investment loss.

Replying to a query, he said the IPO draft guidelines for non-life insurance companies have been sent to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) for comments.

"As far as life insurance companies are concerned, the guidelines have been cleared by SCADA, a body constituted by and approved by SEBI.

We will be bringing out a circular shortly. With regard to non-life companies, we have done the preliminary work and the matter is engaged to the attention of SEBI," the regulator said.

The Institute of Insurance and Risk Management (IIRM), in partnership with ICICI Prudential Life, today announced the graduation of its third batch of full-time executive program in insurance and risk management program.


Triveni Engineering Q4 net profit declines to Rs17.25 crore

Triveni Engineering & Industries Ltd, engaged in the manufacture of sugar and engineered-to-order mechanical equipment, said its net profit for the fourth quarter ended 30 September 2010, declined to Rs17.25 crore from Rs68.22 crore in the corresponding quarter last year.

During the Q4 FY09-10, its net sales increased to Rs587.36 crore from Rs553.49 crore, the company said in a statement.

On Friday, Triveni declined 4.34% to Rs100.25 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex closed 1.73% down at 19,585.


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