Oil PSUs, 2 airports slap notice on Air India

Air India’s total fuel dues to the three oil PSUs amounts to around Rs2,400 crore. Besides, it owes Rs217.08 crore to the Delhi airport and Rs35.89 crore to the Hyderabad airport on account on airport handling charges, including aeronautical charges

New Delhi: Financial crisis facing already cash-strapped Air India worsened on Friday with oil public sector undertakings (PSUs) restricting the supply of jet fuel and operators of Delhi and Hyderabad airports asking it to pay up the dues by 1st June.

GMR-led Delhi International Airport and Hyderabad International Airport said Air India would be allowed to operate their flights “only on cash and carry basis” from midnight of 1st June.

Air India owes Rs217.08 crore to the Delhi airport and Rs35.89 crore to the Hyderabad airport on account on airport handling charges, including aeronautical the charges.

The two GMR-led joint ventures also put Kingfisher Airlines on notice saying that the national carrier and the Vijay Mallya-owned airline had “significant amount of dues” and both of them “will be allowed to operate their flights from and to Delhi and Hyderabad, only on cash and carry basis.”

Kingfisher Airlines owes Rs67.98 crore and Rs21.98 crore respectively to DIAL and GHIAL.

“It is expected that these airline companies will clear major outstanding payments owed by them to DIAL and GHIAL to avoid inconvenience that might be caused to their passengers with effect from 1st June,” a GMR spokesperson said.

The spokesperson said DIAL and GHIAL took the decision “after continued deliberations with these airlines failed to yield payments of outstanding dues.”

Air India on Friday faced a crisis situation with oil PSUs restricting the supply of jet fuel, forcing the carrier to cancel six flights from Thiruvananthapuram and prepare a contingency plan to combine flights from Saturday.

Three state-owned oil firms slashed the supply of aviation turbine fuel (ATF) to the national carrier by 20% at all airports, leading to the cancellation of six services, including some international ones, official sources said.

Air India’s total fuel dues to Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum Corporation and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation amounts to about Rs2,400 crore.

As less fuel was supplied at Thiruvananthapuram early today, only four of the ten scheduled flights, including international ones, could take off, the sources said.

With the spectre of fuel restrictions looming, the airline prepared a contingency to manage its schedules from major metro airports from Saturday, Air India officials said.

The crew on all international flights have also been asked to buy extra fuel while returning home. The airline operates nearly 320 flights on domestic and international sectors daily.

The move by the oil PSUs was described as “arbitrary and unscientific” by airline officials but the two sides reached an understanding during the day that curtailment in ATF supply would not be imposed on all airports.

However, the cut in ATF supply could be restricted to some metros to give Air India the leeway to combine flights and adjust its loads and the daily schedule, the sources added.


Financial Technologies Q4 net loss stands at Rs116.65 crore

Financial Technologies has reported net profit of Rs91.93 crore for the year ended 31 March 2011 against Rs344.36 crore for FY09-10

Financial Technologies (India) Ltd has reported a net loss of Rs116.65 crore for the quarter ended 31 March 2011 compared to Rs43.84 crore for corresponding quarter last year. During the same period, total income has decreased from Rs91.89 crore to Rs87.70 crore.

The company has reported net profit of Rs91.93 crore for the year ended 31 March 2011 against Rs344.36 crore for FY09-10. In the same period, total income has decreased from Rs618.24 crore for FY09-10 to Rs467.65 crore FY10-11.

Dewang Neralla, whole time director, said: "This has been a year of execution for Financial Technologies. Three of our international exchanges went live this year; SMX in Singapore, GBOT in Mauritius and BFX in Bahrain. These exchanges are in start-up phase and we are positive on the potential opportunity of these exchanges in their respective high growth economies."


Share prices headed for gains: Weekly Market Report

Nifty to move up to 5,600, subject to minor dips

The market settled flat over the week, mostly on fluctuating global cues and concerns about a possible rise in diesel prices that will impact all sectors. However, a clutch of positive corporate earnings shielded the indices from a steep fall. Investors are also worried that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will likely tweak rates further, in its monetary policy review next month.

Lingering debt concerns in Europe pulled the domestic market down on Monday. It settled almost unchanged on Tuesday. Dismal earnings by realty major DLF the day before and weak global cues led to a negative close on Wednesday. However, a rally on the last two days cut the earlier losses and the Sensex closed the week at 18,266, down 60 points, while the Nifty finished at 5,476, off just 10 points. If the Nifty crosses 5,490, the market may witness a strong rally up to 5,600, subject to dips.

Among the Sensex stocks, ONGC, Hindalco Industries, Hero Honda and Reliance increased 3% each and ICICI Bank gained 2%. On the losing side, Tata Motors, BHEL declined by 7% each, State Bank of India fell by 4%, TCS and NTPC lost 3% each.

In the sectoral space, BSE Oil & Gas advanced by 2%, BSE Consumer Durables was up by 1%, whereas BSE Power and BSE IT fell by 2% each.

On the economic front, food inflation which had been declining over the previous three weeks, went up by 1.08 percentage point to 8.55% in the week ended 14th May, from the 7.47% recorded in the previous week.

After the petrol price hike a fortnight ago, prices of diesel, LPG and kerosene could be hiked next month when the ministerial panel headed by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee meets to take a decision on the issue.

Domestically, the timely arrival of the monsoon would have a significant impact on the sentiment at home in the next fortnight.

In corporate news, while recommending conditional approval for the Cairn-Vedanta deal, the group of ministers (GoM) considering the matter, said the two companies must agree to treat royalty on the mainstay Rajasthan block as cost recoverable, and agree to pay cess.

The GoM felt that as a pre-condition for the nod, Cairn or its purchaser should agree to pay cess on the all-important Rajasthan block, as well as agree to cost-recovery of Rs18,000 crore in royalty that state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) is paying on the fields.

Earlier this week, chief economic advisor Kaushik Basu expressed confidence that the government would achieve its fiscal deficit target, but he said that if the number comes under pressure from factors like rising commodity prices, it would have to opt for reforms such as deregulating diesel prices. In his budget speech, finance minister Pranab Mukherjee had lowered the fiscal deficit target to 4.6% of the gross domestic product (GDP) from 5.1% for the previous fiscal.

On the global front, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) said that the global economic recovery is on track, helped by a stronger US economy, but threats ranging from high crude prices to European sovereign debt issues deepen the slowdown. In its twice yearly economic outlook, the Organisation forecast world growth would ease to 4.2% this year from 4.9% in 2010. It said that the setback due to the earthquake in Japan could disrupt the supply chain in other countries.




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