New Delhi: Japanese company Panasonic has announced a major acquisition. It has bought a 50.2% stake in Sanyo Electric for $4.6 billion. Sanyo Electric is the world’s largest manufacturer of rechargeable batteries and a major manufacturer of solar cells. Panasonic, on the other hand, already makes fuel cells, giving it a much larger portfolio of alternative energy technology.
Toyota plans to launch a new product to challenge Maruti in the country. The company says it will unveil a low-cost compact car in India next month. Production of the car will begin in 2010 and sales will start in 2011.
Barclays says it is cooperating with Sebi over questions about some of its transactions. One day earlier, Sebi had stopped Barclays from trading in new offshore derivatives instruments. In an order on Wednesday, Sebi said Barclays had not fully disclosed the details of the derivatives that are used by foreign investors to buy Indian equities.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said India needs to spend a lot more on money on agriculture. He said public spending in irrigation and farming technology were crucial for increasing the country’s output of food.
Food inflation continues to rise. The food price index rose 19.05% in the week ending 28 November, the highest it has risen in 11 years. India’s reserve bank has indicated it may be necessary to raise interest rates to counter the increase in food prices.
Also on Thursday, the reserve bank said it is not concerned about current levels of capital inflows into India. It says that the inflows are lower than the capital surge between 2006 and 2008 and that it cannot create an asset bubble. The statement came just a day after.