Vedanta may hike offer to $4bn for more stakes in Balco, HZL
new delhi: Sweetening its long pending offer, mining conglomerate Vedanta Resources may hike the total offer price for acquiring more stakes in Hindustan Zincand Balco to nearly $4 bn (more than Rs.24,800 cr), 43% higher than its last year’s proposal. The London-listed group, headed by Anil Agarwal, has been in talks with the Indian government for more than two years to acquire the remaining stakes in Bharat Aluminium Company (Balco) and Hindustan Zinc. Currently, Vedanta Resources has 64.9% stake in Hindustan Zinc and 51% in Balco. The government currently holds 29.5% stake in Hindustan Zinc and 49% in Balco. Vedanta, now, plans to acquire additional 29.5% in Hindustan Zinc for $3.482 bn (over Rs.21,600 cr) and 49% stake in Balco for $487 mn (more than Rs.3,000 cr), according to Agarwal’s letter to shareholders.

Airtel, Idea, Voda hike mobile Internet rates
new delhi: Major telecom companies Airtel, Idea Cellular and Vodafone have halved the amount of data downloads on 2G networks under certain tariff plans, pushing up the cost of using mobile Internet services. Customers will, for instance, have to pay about 25% extra to download 1 GB data. All the three companies, which dominate India’s mobile services market with about 53% share, have reduced thequantum of Internet download and/or validity periods on various packages they were offering, as per their websites. They were offering 1 GB (or 1024 MB) Internet usage until recently for about Rs 125, which has been reduced to 525 MB. Now, to get 1 GB of Internet usage, Airtel customers will have to shell out Rs 156, and in case of Idea Cellular it will cost Rs 154, valid for use within 28 days in Delhi.

Finland raises Nokia’s tax issue with India
new delhi: Finland has raised with India the tax issues that Finnish mobile handset maker Nokia is facing and expressed hope that there would be a positive resolution to the dispute. “We discussed world economics, Indian economic development, Finnish economic development. We discussed the WTO round in Bali. “And we also, of course, discussed some company issues including Nokia,” Finland’s Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade, Alexander Stubb said after meeting with Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma.

NSE declare Prime Broking as defaulter
new delhi: National Stock Exchange (NSE) today declared Prime Broking as defaulter for its failure to fulfill settlement obligation. The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and stock exchanges including NSE, BSE and MCX-SX, in July, had banned 26 entities including Prime Broking Company, from trading in the stock market, as part of a probe into suspected market manipulations.They had suspended the ‘Unique Client Codes’ of the 26 entities from trading for a period of six months, or till the conclusion of the probe, whichever is earlier.

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