RBI starts discussions with stakeholders on Malegam Report

The RBI has already invited public comments on the Malegam Panel report, which suggested among other things capping interest rate at 24% for loans extended by microfinance institutions (MFIs)

Mumbai: Reserve Bank of India (RBI) deputy governor KC Chakrabarty today said the apex bank has started discussions with all the stakeholders regarding implementation of the Malegam Committee recommendations on microfinance, reports PTI.

"This (the Malegam Report) is at the discussion stage... We have not decided anything yet," Mr Chakrabarty told reporters on the sidelines of an event here.

"Some part of the report like interest rate will be applicable from 1st April," he said.

The RBI has already invited public comments on the Malegam Panel report, which suggested among other things capping interest rate at 24% for loans extended by microfinance institutions (MFIs).

The committee, headed by the RBI's Central Board director YH Malegam, suggested that small loans cannot exceed Rs25,000 and creating a separate category of non-banking financial companies (NBFC-MFI) for the MFI sector.

The central bank constituted the committee in October last year in the wake of allegations of overcharging and use coercive recovery practices by MFIs that led to a spate of suicides in Andhra Pradesh.

The committee submitted its report on 19th January. These recommendations, the committee said, should be implemented from 1 April 2011.

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Cairn not to seek extension of Vedanta deal deadline

Cairn Energy CEO Bill Gammell expressed confidence that the dialogue with the Indian government to secure necessary to conclude the deal by 15th April

New Delhi: UK's Cairn Energy Plc, which has proposed to sell most of its stake in its Indian unit to mining group Vedanta Resources, today said it will not an seek extension of the 15th April deadline to conclude the $9.6 billion deal, reports PTI.

"I don't intend to go back to shareholders to extend the deadline," Cairn Energy CEO Bill Gammell told reporters after meeting oil minister S Jaipal Reddy here.

He said his firm continues to be in dialogue with the government to secure the necessary approvals to conclude the deal by 15th April.

"I'm confident that things will move further satisfactorily,' he added.

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Consumer price indices pegs inflation at 6% for January

According to new series, the all-India consumer price index stood at 106 (provisional figure) for January 2011 taking the base at an annualised level of 100 for the entire year

New Delhi: The government today launched a new series for measuring inflation which suggested consumer price index (CPI) based inflation at 6% for January this year, reports PTI.

The figure was arrived based on a comparison with the annual all-India CPI index average for the whole of 2010.

"Since these indices are being introduced for the first time, annual inflation rates have not been compiled," the ministry of statistics and programme implementation said in a statement.

According to new series, the all-India consumer price index stood at 106 (provisional figure) for January 2011 taking the base at an annualised level of 100 for the entire year.

Though inflation in terms of CPI based on the new computation stands at 6%, the ministry said that actual rate of inflation would be available only after a period of one year.

While the rural CPI indices stood at 107, CPI urban stood at 104 during the month under review.

Releasing the new series, the government said for a period of one year, the practice of giving the figures in the present form without quoting the inflation rate would be continued "till the series gets stabilised" and adequate timely receipt of price data is achieved.

It added that these are provisional figures and would be revised subsequently.

The ministry further said all the states have not been included for the new calculations as figures from some of them are yet to be compiled.

These consumer indices have been released for five major groups-food, beverages and tobacco; fuel and light; housing; clothing, bedding and footwear; and miscellaneous.

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