ICICI Pru MF floats 367 days fixed maturity plan

ICICI Pru MF new issue closes on 12th September

ICICI Prudential Mutual Fund has launched ICICI Prudential Fixed Maturity Plan-Series 59-1 Year Plan D, a close-ended income scheme.

The investment objective of the scheme is to generate regular returns by investing in a portfolio of fixed income securities/debt instruments maturing on or before the maturity of the plan under the scheme. The tenure of the scheme is 367 days.

The new issue closes on 12th September. The minimum investment amount is Rs5,000. Crisil Short Term Bond Fund Index is the benchmark index. Chaitanya Pande is the fund manager.


Federal Bank, Oriental Insurance launch Pravasi Insurance scheme

Pravasi Insurance mainly covers hospitalisation expenses of NRI customers by providing cashless treatment facility at more than 3,000 hospitals pan India

Kerala-based Federal Bank in association with Oriental Insurance Company has launched a unique insurance scheme for its new NRI customers, named Fed Oriental Pravasi Insurance.

The insurance mainly covers hospitalisation expenses of NRI customers by providing cashless treatment facility at more than 3,000 hospitals pan India and also for unforeseen eventualities like repatriation, accidents, the bank said in a press release. All new NRI customers, who maintain a minimum balance of Rs5,000 or more are eligible for the insurance coverage. Medical floater cover for family is available in the event of death or disability of the insured for Rs10 lakh. Economy class airfare for a dependent or bystander in case of accident/airlifting along with that of the patient is also available. Overseas treatment in recognised hospitals for an amount up to 75,000 per annum is also offered under the scheme.


CAG lambasts oil ministry for allowing RIL to retain entire D6 area

As per the Production Sharing Contract, RIL should have relinquished 25% of the total area outside the discoveries in June 2004 and 2005, but the entire block was declared as a discovery area and the company was allowed to retain it

New Delhi: National auditor CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General of India) on Thursday castigated the oil ministry for allowing Reliance Industries (RIL) to retain its entire eastern offshore KG-D6 block in contravention of the Production Sharing Contract (PSC), but did not comment on more than tripling of the field development cost, reports PTI.

The CAG, in its much-awaited report tabled in Parliament on Thursday, did not say if the capital expenditure for KG-D6 being raised from $2.4 billion proposed in 2004 to $8.8 billion in 2006 was unjustified or inflated.

It faulted the oil ministry and its technical arm, the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH), for allowing Reliance to retain the 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.

As per the PSC, RIL should have relinquished 25% of the total area outside the discoveries in June 2004 and 2005, but the entire block was declared as a discovery area and the company was allowed to retain it.

"We recommend that the ministry of petroleum and natural gas should review the determination of the entire contract area as 'discovery area' strictly in terms of the PSC provisions," the CAG said, asking for delineation of the discovery area and relinquishment of the rest.

The CAG was critical of government oversight, particularly on high value procurement decisions, and sought an 'in-depth review' of 10 contracts, including eight awarded to Aker Group by Reliance on a single-bid basis.

Giving RIL a breather on charges of 'gold-plating' its KG-D6 expenses, the CAG said "approval of estimates (first $2.4 billion and then $8.8 billion in 2006) does not constitute acceptance of the cost projects", which can be done only through an audit of the actual cost incurred.

CAG said Reliance submitted an initial development plan (IDP) for Dhirubhai-1 and 3 gas finds in May 2004 with capital expenditure of $2.4 billion. This was followed up with an Addendum to the IDP (AIDP) in October 2006 proposing $5.2 billion capex in Phase-1 and $3.6 billion in Phase-II.

"Most procurement activities were undertaken late in the line with the schedules of the IDP of May 2004. By contrast, activities in respect of items in the AIDP were initiated even before the submission/approval of the AIDP. Clearly, the development activities of the operator were guided by AIDP, rather than IDP," it said.

While expenditure incurred in 2006-07 and 2007-08 was audited by CAG, remaining expenditure incurred from 2008-09 onwards would be covered in the future audit.

CAG faulted RIL for awarding a $1.1 billion contract to put up a production facility at MA oilfield in the same KG-D6 block to Aker on a single bid basis.

"During our scrutiny of the operator's records, we have come across instances, where multiple vendors were pre-qualified. However, when technical bids were received, all vendors (except one) were rejected, and the contract was finally awarded on a single financial bid," it said.

CAG said such disqualification of vendors on technical grounds, after a pre-qualification process and bidders' meeting for technical clarifications, limits the competitiveness which was not in accordance to the PSC.

Seeking in-depth review in the award of 10 contracts (of which 8 were awarded to Aker Group companies), it said" "We are not even remotely suggesting that the operator should follow government procurement procedures, yet any commercially prudent private acquisition would also attempt to generate competition and thereby obtain the most competitive price."

It sought review of the PSC signed under New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP), evolved by the BJP-led NDA government in 1999, saying the regime provides inadequate incentive to contractors like Reliance to reduce capital expenditure.

On the contrary, it provides "substantial incentive to increase capital expenditure or 'front-end' capital expenditure" so that government take from the blocks is lower.

"Given the similar conclusions that two independent agencies have reached as regards the adverse impact of the profit sharing mechanism in protecting government of India's share designed in the late 1990s, there does seem to be enough ground to revisit the formula," it said.

For future PSCs, CAG recommended that the Investment- Multiple linkage with the profit sharing formula be removed.
"Instead, the biddable profit-sharing percentage should be a single percentage. This will reduce the incentive for skewed volume and timing of capital expenditure resulting in very low government of India share of profit petroleum.

"Further, in order to ensure a modicum of control, very high value procurement decisions above a specified limit should be subject to approval by the management committee, more specifically the approval of the government of India representatives," it said.



Shadi Katyal

6 years ago

Is this a news or unknown fact. RIL from dayone has bribed OIl Ministry employees and reports about Krishna find were false while true data was given to RIL. Can anyone tell that while ONGI was finding dry wells but RIL now is recovering gas etc. from it.
There is more vigilance required but in this climate of corruption anything goes.

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