The Indian government has been rocked by a series of corruption scandals which have been documented in this blog.The scandals have not only touched the political sphere but also the stock markets.The scams have not stopped with new ones being reported almost on a daily basis but no convictions have happened.The corrupt and the guilty keep on going about their business as usual as the Indian ruling party thinks it can cure corruption with words.The Congress Party in its annual meeting had said that removing corruption would become its top priority with expeditious proceedings against public officials in graft cases.However the law has been criticized as having too many loopholes even before being passed.Even the actions of the government does not inspire much confidence.The Commonwealth Games which was a much publicized national corruption scandal has yet to see a single prosecution.The guilty officials have managed to all get bail with the Suresh Kalmadi the scandal in chief goes about his business as the powerful ruler of the Indian Olympic Committee.All the government has done is to remove him from the post of the Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the CG .Note this is already a dead body with the Games over a month ago.Note Kalmadi is a leading party member and despite his obvious corruption the government refuses to move against him.
United Kingdom is one the worst countries in the world in terms of its commitment towards Global Warming.Like Canada and USA,UK has been a notable laggard in the Green Energy area.It has one of the smallest percentages of its Energy being derived from clean sources.The government has not changed its policies too much as well despite its “green posturing”.Solar FIT cuts which started in April 2010 were put under review by the authorities in as little as 6 months .This was despite only 10 MW of solar installation a month compared to the 500 MW average for Germany.In offshore wind power,UK is regarded as the leader with the largest installed capacity.However the growth in even Wind Energy has been slow and halting.Also offshore wind power is not the most mature of green technologies out there,so don’t expect any miracles in Renewable Energy growth through this source.
Inflation in India is raging at double digit levels as it is in most of the other countries in Asia.While Food Inflation has been hogging the headlines as Onion Prices become costlier than the daily earnings of the majority of Indians,other commodities are becoming expensive as well.Tyre Companies in India have seen their margins and profits collapse on the back of higher natural rubber prices.This is despite the explosive growth being seen in the automobile sector in India.JK Tyres and Ceat reported their quarter results and both were equally bad with stock prices taking a major hit.Consumer giant HLL which is a subsidiary of the Unilever Group and the largest consumer company in India also saw its stock price tumble.HLL too has been hurt by higher input commodity costs.While volume growth was excellent,the margins got compressed as input prices increased faster than output prices.Note the Indian stock market has fallen more than 10% of its peak even as developed markets are seeing higher peaks.Other Asian markets like Indonesia,Thailand and others too have fallen as high inflation hurts the prospects of companies here.The Central Bank in India RBI raised the intrest rates by 25 bps which some consider as too low.Like other central banks in Asia,India too seems helpless to fight the inflationary pressures brought upon by the higher commodity prices fueled by Bernake money printing.
Asset Financing for utility grade projects accounted for $128 billion while a substantial amount was also raised for Green IPOs notably Enel Green Power,Goldwind,Datang,Longyuan etc.The figure does not include M&A figures not that there were any big bang acquisitions though a number of M&A activities took place in the Smart Grid space.Government individually ramped up the subsidies for Green Industries despite a failure to arrive at a meaningful global agreement to reduce carbon emissions in the Copenhagen Meet.Most of the investments tool place as countries increasingly jockey for the top spot in the emerging Green Industry.Conglomerates like Samsung,GE,Mitsubishi,Siemens have made Green Industry the focus of their management focus and investment leading to the astounding 39% growth.Note Green Advocates have said that $500 billion in annual investments will be required by 2020 to restrict carbon emissions to a tolerable level.
China using its massive foreign exchange horde to buy commodity assets around the world is an old story by now.It is now also getting into the act in the Green Energy area as China’s state owned chemical group Blue Star has bought Norwegian environment chemical company Elkem from the Orkla conglomerate.Elkem is one of the largest silicon metal producers in the world and makes a solar grade polysilicon through a specialized low cost process.Orkla which is also the 40% owner of one of the world’s largest silane and polysilicon producers Renewable Energy Corporation (REC) had been looking out for some time to sell Elkem.China has not been a big producer of polysilicon which is the main raw material for producing silicon based semiconductors and silcion based solar panels.The massive demand for polycrstalline modules has resulted in it being the main demand driver for polysilicon.
India’s Agriculture Sector account for only a miniscule percentage of GDP and growth,however most of India’s population continues to depend on it.Despite rapid growth of the services and industries sector as globalization leads to assimilation of foreign technology and practises,agriculture continues to live in medieval times. India’s Food Supply Chain leads to massive waster and inefficiency with 30% of India’s vegetable and fruit produce being wasted.This is criminal in a country where most of the children go hungry.However corporatization has been repelled by vested interests leading to a the sorry situation.Food inflation has seen double digits since last year and despite a better harvest year,some food prices are touching the stratosphere.The inadequate supply chain leads to periodic shortages of key food items used by Indian as part of the daily diet.