Companies hopeful of economic recovery in 2021 but cautious about Covid-19

Sanitaryware makers to

manufacturers of consumer durables remain optimistic about an economic revival in 2021 but cautious as the risk of COVID-19 pandemic still exists, officials said on Wednesday.

Many companies across sectors are looking to make their balance sheets strong after they have experienced market disruptions in the current calendar year due to the raging global outbreak, they said.

Firms ranging from tourism, food and beverage sectors to sanitaryware industry are focusing on the health and hygiene segment and strengthen their digital presence to overcome the challenges, the officials said, adding that the economic revival is expected in the second half of the next year, they said.

“Despite the major blow in the economy in 2020 due to the pandemic, 2021 seems to be the year of redemption and we can expect the economy to not only recover but also to show significant signs of growth,” Roca Bathroom India managing director KE Ranganathan said.

Revenue from some of its brands has reached 90-100 per cent of the pre-COVID levels, while sales from the touchless and hygiene products have gained momentum and the company has also

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Anil Ambani’s Reliance Capital gets 10 more bids for subsidiaries

(RCL), part of the debt-ridden Anil Ambani-promoted Reliance Group, has received 10 more bids, including from SBI Life, for its subsidiaries, sources said.

Earlier this month, the Committee of Debenture Holders had extended the last date for submission of expression of interest (EoI) to December 17, 2020. Following this, 10 new bids have come in for Reliance Capital’s assets, taking the total number of bids to 70, the sources said.

State Bank of India’s subsidiary SBI Life has also shown interest in picking up Reliance Capital’s stake in Reliance Nippon Life Insurance, they added.

Reliance Nippon Life Insurance Company, a joint venture with Japan’s largest life insurer-Nippon Life which holds 49 per cent shareholding, has a paid-up capital of Rs 1,196 crore as of September 30, 2020.

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Spain Passes Budget In Boost For Minority Government

Spain’s Senate approved Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s budget for 2021 on Tuesday, boosting his minority Socialist-led government after years of political instability.

The spending plan, which channels billions of euros in European Union pandemic recovery funds into the economy, was approved by the lower house on December 3 before receiving the Senate’s backing.

Its passage increases the chances that Sanchez will hold on to power until the next general election set for 2023.

It became the first budget to be approved since 2018.

The rise of new parties such as far-left Podemos and market-friendly Ciudadanos has fractured parliament, making it difficult to pass legislation.

This has led to a cycle of political instability that has taken Spain, the euro zone’s fourth largest economy, to four elections between 2015 and 2019.

“This is a very, very important stage because it allows Pedro Sanchez to gain time and stability,” said Oriol Bartomeus, a political scientist at the Autonomous University of Barcelona.

Sanchez came to power in June 2018 but was forced to call fresh elections early last year after Catalan separatist parties voted down his draft budget.

The budget vote came on the heels of the start of a high-profile trial of

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