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India eyes USD 100 billion FDI in next two years: Suresh Prabhu

India will aim to receive USD 100 billion in foreign direct investments in the next two years and special industrial clusters are being created for countries like Japan, South Korea, China and Russia where their companies can invest and operate, Union Minister Suresh Prabhu said. The commerce and industry minister said his ministry has also identified sectors and countries which holds huge potential for investments in India.

IT & Startups expected to hire five lakh people in 2019: T V Mohandas Pai

India’s information technology (IT) services sector and startups together are expected to hire up to five lakh people in 2019 as demand for freshers is on the upswing, an industry veteran said Wednesday.

Former Chief Financial Officer of IT major Infosys Ltd, T V Mohandas Pai said entry-level packages in the industry went up by as much as 20 per cent in 2018, after stagnation in salaries for the past seven years.

“Growth is coming back to the Indian IT services industry,” he told PTI, talking about industry highlights in 2018 and prospects in the coming calendar year.

Pai said 2018 saw “H1B visa situation getting tougher,” Indian companies focusing more on Japan and Southeast Asia, massive expansion of captives and buy-backs by big companies.

Hyderabad has become a hot destination, with many new age companies coming to the Telangana capital, thanks to good infrastructure, and “very good marketing” by KTR (KT Rama Rao, who served as IT Minister in the previous TRS government), according to him.He also said Indian companies were now trying to expand in markets in Asia much more vigorously, particularly Japan which is “opening up” and southeast Asia.

Indian-American Rajesh Subramaniam named fedex president

Indian-American Rajesh Subramaniam has been named as the president and chief executive officer of US multinational courier delivery giant FedEx Express.

Subramaniam, currently the executive vice president, chief marketing and communications officer of FedEx Corporation, will assume his new role on January 1, 2019. He replaces David L Cunningham at the Tennessee-headquartered company. Subramaniam, an IIT-Bombay graduate from Thiruvananthapuram, has been with FedEx for more than 27 years. He has held various executive-level positions in the company. He began his career in Memphis and subsequently moved to Hong Kong where he oversaw marketing and customer service for the Asia Pacific region. Subramaniam then took over as the president of FedEx Express in Canada before moving back to the US as senior vice president of international marketing. He was then promoted to executive vice president of marketing in 2013 at FedEx Services, prior to being named executive vice president and chief marketing and communications officer at FedEx Corporation in 2017. “Raj’s global vision and broad experience make him uniquely qualified to lead our largest operating company. We look forward to the continued growth of FedEx Express within our global portfolio as Raj takes on this critical role,” David J Bronczek, president and chief operating officer, FedEx Corporation, said. Subramaniam earned his Master of Science in Chemical Engineering from Syracuse University and MBA from the University of Texas in Austin.

India networking market grew 67 per cent in third quarter of 2018, CISCO leads: IDC

Cisco continues to lead the India networking market which witnessed 67.1 per cent year-over-year growth in the third quarter of this year, the International Data Corporation (IDC) said on Wednesday. Government and enterprise digitalisation initiatives are expected to drive future growth in the India networking market which includes Ethernet switch, routers and wireless local area network (WLAN) segments, according to IDC. “Mobile workforce, anytime anywhere access to enterprise networks, security across multiple channels and shift towards cloud-based application workload are key drivers for investment in network infrastructure,” Dileep Nadimpalli, Research Manager, Storage, IDC India said in a statement. In the third quarter of 2018, the Ethernet switch market in India stood at $160.3 million with an year-over-year (YoY) growth of 34.4 per cent, according to IDC’s latest “Asia/Pacific Quarterly Ethernet Switch Tracker”. Cisco continues to dominate the Ethernet switch market with a 65.7 per cent share in Q3 2018, followed by HPE and Huawei, the report said. The India router market in Q3 2018 stood at $214.9 million with an YoY growth of 140.4 per cent, IDC said. Cisco accounted to three-fourth of the router market in Q3 2018. Nokia and Huawei witnessed high double-digit YoY growth on the back of a few big-ticket wins in the telecom space, according to IDC’s latest “Asia/Pacific Quarterly Router Tracker” report. The WLAN market in India stood at $54 million in Q3 2018 with a healthy YoY growth of 12 per cent. Cisco retained the top spot in the WLAN market with a 24.8 per cent market share in Q3 2018, followed by TP-Link and HPE, IDC said. “Software defined networking solutions are expected to gain prominence as the enterprise infrastructure evolves from siloed, human-dependent systems to self-servicing, fully automated and seamless integrated systems,” said Ranganath Sadasiva, Director-Enterprise, IDC India.


Commerce ministry in favour to hike import duty on aluminium: Prabhu

The commerce ministry is in favour of hiking import duty on aluminium with a view to support domestic manufacturers, Union Minister Suresh Prabhu has said. “That is a proposal to protect our domestic industry. The proposal is under examination and we support the proposal,” Prabhu told. The commerce and industry minister said that there has been a complaint by aluminium industry about the dumping of the commodity. He was replying to a question about the government’s plan to increase import duty on aluminium. The industry has demanded an increase in import duties on aluminium scrap and primary aluminium amid a high growth in inward shipments of these items. They are demanding to raise the duty on primary and scrap aluminium to 10 per cent. Currently, the basic customs duty on aluminium scrap and primary aluminium is 2.5 per cent and 7.5 per cent, respectively. Besides this, domestic players have also urged to impose minimum import price and some kind of quota on the imports for the user industry. Total production of aluminium in India is about 4 million tonnes and consumption is about 3.6 million tonnes. The demand comes in the wake of the US imposing 10 per cent duty on certain aluminium products. China too has raised the duties. Aluminium is required by industries like automobile, construction, consumer goods etc.

All these industries are growing in India and the country is producing a sufficient amount of the required metal domestically, an industry expert has said. As per estimates, during the first quarter of the current fiscal, imports of aluminium scrap increased to 36,000 tonnes from 16,000 tonnes. Further talking about a proposal to cut export duty on iron ore, the commerce and industry minister said the ministry has sought views of steel and mines ministry on the issue. “We are open for the proposal,” he said, adding the government would provide all support for the growth of domestic industry.

Economic ideas once dismissed as ravings of the loony left are becoming mainstream

We live in an age of political earthquakes: That much, at least, seemed clear from newspaper headlines nearly every day of 2018. But intellectual tectonic plates were also shifting throughout the year, with ideas once dismissed as the ravings of the loony left breaking into the mainstream. A Western consensus quickly formed after the collapse of communist regimes in 1989. It was widely believed by newspaper editorialists as well as politicians and businessmen that there was no alternative to free markets, which alone could create prosperity. The government’s traditional attempts to regulate corporations and banks and redistribute wealth through taxes were deemed a problem. As the economist, Milton Friedman put it, “The world runs on individuals pursuing their separate interests.” Neither individuals nor companies needed to worry much about inequality or social justice. In Friedman’s influential view, “There is one and only one social responsibility of business – to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits.” Political fiascos in the West, following its largest financial crisis – events accompanied by the emergence of China, a Communist-run nation-state, as a major economic power, as well as an unfolding environmental calamity – have utterly devastated these post-1989 assumptions about free markets and the role of governments. Confessions to this effect come routinely from disenchanted believers. Take, for instance, Olivier Blanchard, former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund, who recently posed the once-blasphemous question: “What comes after capitalism?” Blanchard was commenting on the recent demonstrations in France against President Emmanuel Macron. He rightly described a global impasse: “Given the political constraints on redistribution and the constraints from capital mobility, we may just not be able to alleviate inequality and insecurity enough to prevent populism and revolutions.” Nor, for that matter, can we work towards a greener economy. In any case, Blanchard’s admission confirms that we inhabit, intellectually and culturally, a radical new reality – one in which “neoliberalism,” a word previously confined to academic seminars, has entered rap lyrics, and stalwarts of the establishment sound like activists of Occupy Wall Street. Thus, Martin Wolf, respected columnist for the Financial Times, recently concluded, if “reluctantly,” that “capitalism is substantially broken.” This year, many books with titles such as “The Myth of Capitalism: Monopolies and the Death of Competition” and “Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World” blamed an unjust economic system and its beneficiaries for the rise of demagogues. It is becoming clear that the perennial conflict between democracy, which promises equality, and capitalism, which generates inequality, has been aggravated by systemic neglect of some fundamental issues.

Mithali Raj honoured by Australian diamonds retail partner Senco gold & diamonds

Mithali Raj, captain of the Indian women’s cricket team and the official ambassador for Rio Tinto’s Australian Diamonds programme, was honored with the Senco Gold & Diamonds, Swarna Samman award at a star-studded event held in Kolkata on Friday 21st December.

Swarna Samman is an annual award by leading retail Jeweller Senco Gold & Diamonds to recognise outstanding achievers in the fields of art, culture and sports. This year Mithali Raj is honoured for her excellence and contribution to women’s cricket in India.

Speaking at the event Ms Raj said, “I am delighted to be the recipient of Senco Gold & Diamonds, Swarna Samman. When I first started playing cricket, there was no recognition of female players in India. I have had to strive for all that I achieved and I’m honoured to have represented my country and taken it to the pinnacle of world cricket.”

The award was presented by Shaankar Sen, Chairman and Managing Director, Senco Gold & Diamonds in the presence of Sourav Ganguly, former captain of the Indian men’s cricket team, and Brand Ambassador for Senco Gold & Diamonds.

Suvankar Sen, Executive Director, Senco Gold & Diamonds, said, “Swarna Samman is our way of recognising exemplary individuals who have dedicated their lives to their chosen field. We wish to thank them for enriching our lives and being an inspiration to society. This year we are honoured to present the award to an icon of Indian cricket, Ms Mithali Raj.”

The following day at the Senco Gold & Diamonds, Moulali showroom Mithali Raj unveiled an exclusive collection of Australian Diamonds jewellery from Rio Tinto’s Argyle mine in Western Australia. Comprising both bridal and fashion jewellery, the Australian Diamonds collection is available at all Senco Gold & Diamonds stores.

Central to Rio Tinto’s Australian Diamonds initiative is a leading-edge system to track Rio Tinto’s rough diamonds from its Argyle mine in Australia through to jewellery in India, thereby celebrating Rio Tinto’s diamond heritage and pedigree from a clean, traceable source of diamonds.

Vikram Merchant, Director of Rio Tinto’s Diamond Sales and Marketing activities in India said, “We are delighted to work with leading retailer Senco Gold & Diamonds and honoured that Mithali Raj is the official ambassador for Australian Diamonds, helping promote the popularity of diamonds in fashion and bridal jewellery, particularly for younger Indian consumers.”

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