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ONGC was forced to exit from a gas block in Trinidad & Tobago after its partner Lakshmi N Mittal walked out of the project and its unit OVL would have had to foot the entire $304 million exploration expenditure
India's State-run Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) has been forced to exit from a gas block in Trinidad & Tobago after its partner Lakshmi N Mittal walked out of the project, reports PTI.
ONGC-Mittal Energy Ltd (OEML)—the joint venture of ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL) and Mittal Investment Sarl (MIS)—had in 2007 won the offshore block North Coast Marine Area-2 (NCMA-2), that is estimated to hold reserves of 2 trillion cubic feet, beating Britain's Centrica Plc.
But last year, Mittal Investment Sarl (MIS) decided to exit the project possibly because of the global economic downturn.
"When we had bid for the block in Trinidad & Tobago, we had consciously decided not to take more than 51% stake. After the exit of MIS we had the option of doing the project entirely on our own but that did not fit into our scheme of things," an OVL official said.
OMEL had 65% interest in the block while Trinidad & Tobago's State-owned oil firm Petrotrin had the remaining. Under the initial agreement, OMEL was required to carry Petrotrin during the exploration phase (OMEL contributing Petrotrin's share of investment).
After the exit of MIS, OVL—the overseas investment arm of ONGC—would have had to foot the entire $304 million exploration expenditure with Petrotrin not willing to share any risk. "We tried to get an international energy firm as partner but did not succeed so we had no option but to exit the block," the OVL official said.
Google's new mobile handset Nexus One will not be available for consumers in India. In the US, it is being sold only through the Google Web store for $529 without a service plan
Internet search giant Google has launched its much-awaited, and correctly predicted by Moneylife along with some other media, its mobile handset titled as Nexus One. Google will sell the phone through its Web store. However, it will currently be available only for US consumers.
"The Nexus One belongs to the emerging class of devices which we call 'superphones'. It's the first in what we expect to be a series of products which we will bring to market with our operator and hardware partners and sell through our online store," Google said in a release.
Google said the Web store would allow consumers to purchase the Nexus One without operator service or with service from T-Mobile USA. Google further said that it expects to add more operators, more devices and more countries in the future, including Verizon Wireless in the US and Vodafone in Europe.
The Nexus One, which was garnering favourable first reviews on tech websites and forums, ships immediately from Google's online store for $179 with a two-year contract from Deutsche Telekom's T-Mobile USA, or $529 without a service plan.
According to Techcrunch.com, Google has a lot riding on this launch. Sure, it would be nice for the phone to be a popular device in its own right. But, as many have pointed out, it’s the disruptive distribution model that’s going to have the biggest impact down the line. Google needs to show that this new online distribution model is something that people are willing to actually use, it added.
Manufactured by HTC, the Nexus One features dynamic noise suppression, a large 3.7-inch organic light emitting diode (OLED) display and a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset for blazing speeds. Running on Android 2.1, the newest version of Eclair, the software includes innovations like a voice-enabled keyboard so that you can speak into any text field, fun Live Wallpapers, a 3D photo gallery for richer media experiences and lots more. Of course, it also comes with a host of popular Google applications, including Gmail, Google Voice and Google Maps Navigation.
Nexus One's launch, especially in the US, assumes significance as T-Mobile and AT&T's exclusivity deals with Apple for its iPhone are about to come to an end. Google's phone would prove to be a shot-in-the-arm for these carriers, who so far had to depend on iPhone for higher-end mobile handsets.
The move also marks a rare foray into direct sales for Google. With the exception of an appliance it markets as a search tool to businesses, the company hasn't sold hardware in the past.
Google became a high-profile player in the mobile arena two years ago, when it launched its Android software. A number of leading handset manufacturers, including Motorola, built phones running the software, some of which contain branding "powered by Google". But the phones—many of which hit the market in recent months—haven't sold nearly as well as Apple's iPhone.
As far as India is concerned, Google's website says "Sorry, the Nexus One phone is not available in your country". Officials from Google India were not immediately available for comments. So for Indian enthusiasts, the wait could be a little longer.
The Hinduja Group company has said that it is considering hiking the prices of its products before March due to rising commodity prices
The Hinduja Group-promoted Ashok Leyland Ltd on Wednesday said that it would hike prices of its commercial vehicles (CVs) shortly due to rising input costs, reports PTI.
"Commodity prices are going up and we are already considering hiking the prices of our products. It will happen shortly, before March," Ashok Leyland's managing director R Seshasayee told reporters in New Delhi at the 10th Auto Expo.
He, however, said that there has been a surge in demand for CVs in the last two quarters and the company expects to close this fiscal at a total sales of about 62,000-63,000 units.
When asked about the sales prospects for the next fiscal, he said, "It (growth) should be in double digits."
Mr Seshasayee also said that the government must not withdraw the stimulus package provided by it in the wake of the economic downturn.
He said excise duty reduction, especially in the CV segment, should not be treated as stimulus. The government has cut excise duty on CVs to 8% in phases to spur growth.
"The CV (segment) deserves lower excise duty, therefore that must continue," he said.
Ashok Leyland also said that it would execute orders received from 21 state transport bodies for supply of buses by 31st March this year under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewable Mission. Of the 11,000 orders placed by different state bodies, the company got 51% orders.