India also at risk; may face rating downgrade: S&P

"Fiscal capacities of Japan, India, Malaysia, Taiwan and New Zealand have shrunk relative to pre-2008 level," ratings agency S&P in its report on Asia-Pacific Sovereigns. It added that if a renewed slowdown comes, it would create a deeper and more prolonged impact

New Delhi: Ratings agency Standard & Poor's (S&P) today cautioned that it could lower the sovereign ratings of countries like India, Japan and Malaysia, which are still to come out of the economic meltdown of 2008, reports PTI.

"The implications for sovereign creditworthiness in the Asia-Pacific would likely be more negative than previously experienced and a larger number of negative rating actions would follow," S&P said in its report on Asia-Pacific Sovereigns.

"Fiscal capacities of Japan, India, Malaysia, Taiwan and New Zealand have shrunk relative to pre-2008 level," it said, adding that these countries continue to bear the scars of the downturn.

The governments, it said, would be required to use their own revenue streams to support their economies and financial sector once again.

It further said that if a renewed slowdown comes, it would create a deeper and more prolonged impact.

At the time of the global financial crisis in 2008, several countries, including India, had rolled out stimulus packages facilitating monetary expansion and lower taxes to mitigate the impact of the slowdown.

At that time, India had provided three fiscal stimulus packages totalling Rs1.86 lakh crore, which helped the economy clock a growth of 8% in 2009-10, as against 6.8% in 2008-09. Prior to the crisis, the Indian economy had been expanding at a growth rate of over 9% over a three-year period.

Late on Friday, global ratings agency S&P downgraded its US sovereign rating to AA+ from AAA, with a negative outlook.


Forex Achievements has fabricated registration certificate to fool people, warns RBI

The Chile-based company operated an MLM scheme over the past year, posting a fake Certificate of Registration that has the logo of the Reserve Bank of India on its website to fool investors

Multi-level marketing companies use different methods to fool people, particularly when it comes to establishing their credentials. While some companies like Speak Asia ignore all registration formalities and yet try to display some generic documents, there are others who create fake certificates even in the name of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to endorse their legal status.

The RBI has now issued a warning about one such company, Forex Achievements, saying that it has used a fake certificate of registration. Forex Achievements is an unregistered non-banking financial institution that had on its own fabricated the certificate and even put it up on its website, in order to win customers who believed it was a legally-approved entity, the RBI stated. The website is no longer functional.

In fact, this did help the company draw investors. It has been the experience that several consumer blogs contain recommendations for investment in various entities based on the certificate of registration (CoR), which in this case has turned out to be fake. There are many posts from people complaining that they have lost money and warning that the company is committing fraud.

The company that is based in Chile (South America), started a scheme in India some time in July last year, promising investors a 2% return that would be paid through electronic money transfer. Payments were also made for introducing 'down lines' in the form of referrals and binaries. Initial payments were made, but these too stopped after October 2010. As many investors lost money and trust in the company, the owner was said to be absconding, having collected crores of rupees.

The RBI stated: "The Bank would like to clarify to the general public that no company/entity by the name of M/s Forex Achievements is registered as a company under the Companies Act, 1956, which is a prerequisite for obtaining CoR from the Bank. The CoR bearing Registration No. 07.00410 dated April 07, 2010 displayed by the entity on its website is a fabricated one and not issued by the RBI to it. Members of the public are hereby cautioned not to deposit money with M/s Forex Achievements and such other unincorporated bodies. Depositing money with these unincorporated bodies would be doing so at their own risk."

The RBI has warned the public against placing money in any such company and advised investors to only deposit money in companies which are legally registered with the RBI and entitled to hold deposits. One should recheck on the RBI website for genuine certificates before falling into any attractive schemes, whose bitter truth is revealed in just a few months after its launch. Investors continue to learn their lessons the hard way!




5 years ago

Most of cheating schemes are widely advertised. Why can the government take action on their own and wait till masses are cheated. May be there is now law for that. Or may be there is no will to do it.


5 years ago

Upright and honest lawyers of Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh writes to the Editor, The New India Express

(THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS, August 11, 2011)

This is what they had to say:


The article ‘Kerala is now fraud’s own country’ (NIE, Aug 4) shows the real picture of almost all the states in the country. Cheats have been deceiving our people lining their pockets with the hard-earned money. It is high time the media initiated action against such crooks in a big way.

Good that the Police have launched a drive against money circulation schemes. We, the advocates of Corporate Frauds Watch, Vijayawada, appreciate your work.


Thank You Shyam Sundar.
Thank you New Indian Express
Thank you Moneylife.

Cairn accepts govt preconditions for stake sale to Vedanta

Cairn Energy chairman Bill Gammell, who had till recently maintained that forcing Cairn India to pay royalty and cess on the mainstay Rajasthan oil block, on 3rd August wrote to oil secretary GC Chaturvedi saying all the preconditions set by the government were acceptable to the company and Vedanta

New Delhi: After pooh-poohing for almost a year, UK's Cairn Energy Plc has said it will accept all riders the government has attached for giving approval to its stake sale in Cairn India to mining group Vedanta Resources, reports PTI.

Cairn Energy chairman Bill Gammell, who had till recently maintained that forcing Cairn India to pay royalty and cess on the mainstay Rajasthan oil block was against the signed contract and would hurt minority shareholders' interest, on 3rd August wrote to oil secretary GC Chaturvedi saying all the preconditions set by the government were acceptable to the company and Vedanta.

To get $6.02 billion from the sale of a 40% stake, Mr Gammell said Cairn Energy and Vedanta will vote at a shareholders' meet for acceptance of the royalty and cess riders, ignoring the resolution passed by the Cairn India board in February opposing the value demolishing preconditions.

"Cairn UK Holdings (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cairn Energy), holding 52.11% of the issued share capital of Cairn India, and Vedanta Resources Plc Group, holding an aggregate of 28.5% of the issued share capital of Cairn India, shall both be voting in favour of acceptance of these conditions," Mr Gammell wrote.

Cairn India had on 26th July stated that its April-June quarter net profit would halve to Rs1,435 crore if it was asked to share royalty on crude oil produced from the Rajasthan fields.

The company currently does not pay any royalty on its 70% interest in the Rajasthan fields. The royalty, as per the contract, is paid by state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), which got a 30% stake in the 6.5 billion barrel field for free.

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 27th June gave consent to the Cairn-Vedanta deal, but subject to Cairn or its successor agreeing to charging or deducting the royalty paid by ONGC from revenues earned from sale of oil before profits are split between the partners.

This cost recovery of royalty will lower Cairn India's profitability.

Also, the CCEA said Cairn India must pay a Rs2,500 per tonne cess on its 70% share of oil production. Cairn maintains that cess, like royalty, is a liability of ONGC and had initiated arbitration against the government on being forced to pay cess.

Mr Gammell said Cairn Energy and Vedanta will vote in a postal ballot being conducted among Cairn India shareholders for withdrawal of the cess arbitration.

Cairn Energy, together with Vedanta, has 80% voting rights in Cairn India and can overrule the objections of minority shareholders to see any proposal through.

"We expect the results of the shareholder vote to be announced in September and hope thereafter to be in a position to comply with all of the conditions set," he wrote, seeking an extension of the one-month deadline the government has set for acceptance of the conditions.

Since the board of Cairn India, which Mr Gammell chaired on 10th February opposed accepting the government preconditions, Cairn Energy wants these conditions to be voted on by the company shareholders.

Besides Vedanta furnishing financial and performance guarantees and an undertaking to keep Cairn India's technical capability undisturbed, the preconditions include ONGC-Cairn India's partner in most of its 10 properties in India-giving a no objection certificate, as well as the home ministry giving security clearance to Vedanta.

Since the Cairn-Vedanta deal was announced in August last year, Cairn India has been opposed to making royalty payments recoverable from the sale of oil and the company being made liable to pay a Rs2,500 per tonne cess, as this was not in line with the Production Sharing Contract (PSC).

A change in the contract was neither in the interest of the company, nor its minority shareholders, it has maintained.

"It should be noted that if royalty were to be cost recoverable, it would lead to a decline in the revenues and profit-after-tax for the current quarter by Rs1,291.6 crore," Cairn India said, announcing its Q1 earnings on 26th July.

Cairn India reported a 10-fold jump in net profit to Rs2,726.6 crore for the April-June quarter.

Last August, Vedanta proposed buying a 51%-60% stake in oil and gas explorer Cairn India for up to $9.6 billion in cash, but the deal has been delayed due to the lack of government and regulatory approvals.

A Group of Ministers (GoM) headed by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee had recommended to Cabinet that the deal should be approved if Cairn or its successor agreed to royalty being added to the project cost and recovered from oil sales, as well as agreed to pay its share of the Rs2,500 per tonne oil cess.

Days before the CCEA accepted the GoM recommendation and gave conditional approval, Cairn Energy lowered the price it was demanding from Vedanta to make up for the reduced profitability from acceptance of the preconditions.

It removed a non-compete provision and related non-compete fee of Rs50 per share.

Vedanta's total payment, at the reduced price of Rs355 per share for a 40% stake in Cairn India, will now be $6.02 billion, instead of $6.84 billion previously.


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