Detroit: The most talked about car at the Detroit auto show this year isn’t even present: Tata Motors Ltd’s Nano. The vehicle would violate emissions and safety regulations in the US, Europe and Japan, auto executives from those markets said.
The $2,500 (about Rs1 lakh) Tata Nano wouldn’t meet consumer expectations in developed countries for creature comforts such as air -conditioning, they said. Yet, they’re all wondering how to respond to it.
“What we’re seeing really is the automotive world is divided into two distinct markets,” said Bob Lutz, vice-chairman of General Motors Corp.
Barclays, StanChart say Asia will weather US slowdown
Singapore: Asian economies will weather a sharp US slowdown in 2008 and avoid recession, supported by domestic demand and backed up by healthy foreign reserves, economists from Barclays Bank Plc. and Standard Chartered Plc. said on Tuesday. StanChart, which is forecasting a US recession this year, said it was sticking with its 2008 growth forecasts for China and India that were made before US recession fears mounted in recent weeks. “We do not anticipate recession in Asia,” the bank’s chief economist, Gerard Lyons, said. “The US is not as important as it used to be,” he added in reference to the rise of India and China. Barclays said emerging Asia ex-China will maintain last year’s economic expansion of 7.3%. The bank expects that growth in the US will slow in the first quarter of this year before picking up, bringing full-year growth to 2.3% from last year’s estimated 2.2%. Peter Redward, head of rates research for emerging Asia, said a repeat of 2001—when Asia slid into recession—was unlikely because of strong intra-regional trade and corporate balance sheets.
Vedanta plans steel plant in Orissa
New Delhi: Mining and metals company Vedanta Resources Plc. plans to set up a 5 million tonnes per annum steel plant at an investment of about Rs24,000 crore in Keonjhar district of Orissa.
“We are impressed at the growing consumption of steel in India and are keen to enter its steel sector,” a company official said.
Vedanta is the holding company of Sterlite Industries (India) Ltd.
Meanwhile, Vedanta began the trial run of its Rs3,500 crore alumina plant at Lanjigarh in Orissa. “We envisage being No. 1 producer of aluminium next year in the country,” said Vedanta’s business development head C.V. Krishnan.
Apollo Tyres Q3 profit rises 77%, sales up 13%
New Delhi: Tyre maker Apollo Tyres Ltd said on Tuesday that net income gained in the third quarter by 77%. Net income in the three months ended 31 December rose to Rs62.17 crore, or Rs1.31 a share, from Rs35.07 crore, or Re0.79, a year earlier, the company, which is partly-owned by Michelin and Cie, said in a press release.
Sales increased to Rs974 crore , up 13%, from Rs860 crore a year earlier, the company said.
Apollo’s board of directors approved a spending of Rs360 crore for expansion, according to the statement.
Bharti Axa to raise paid-up capital
New Delhi: Private sector life insurer Bharti Axa Life Insurance Co. on Tuesday said it will make capital infusion of about Rs50 crore by the end of March.
“We have been making capital infusion once in every two months. The last investment was done in December and the next tranche would be in March,” said Bharti Axa chief executive officer Nitin Chopra. The next investment would be in the range of Rs40-50 crore, he added.
The total paid-up capital of the private insurer stood at about Rs390 crore at the end of December.
The company, which is currently operating from 77 branches across 66 cities, expects to increase the number of branches to 250 by the end of March 2009.