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    India’s Top Mergers and Acquisitions of 2008

    May 9 – India's top mobile operator Bharti Airtel Ltd is in exploratory talks to acquire 51 percent in South Africa's MTN Group at a value of around US$19 billion, creating the world’s sixth-largest mobile company with 130 million subscribers across 21 countries.

    If the deal does go though, it would make it India's biggest foreign deal.

    Reuters reported Tata Steel Ltd. last year engineered India's biggest takeover to date, a US$13 billion purchase of Anglo-Dutch steelmaker Corus Group Plc, which was more than double the size of the next biggest deal, Hindalco Industries purchase of Canada's Novelis.

    Indian firms have announced deals worth $6.8 billion so far in 2008, down 39 percent from the same period last year.

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    India to Test Missile Agni-III Today

    May 7 – India is all set to test its most ambitious missile Agni-III on Wednesday on Wheeler Island off the coast of Orissa in Eastern India.

    The missile has a strike range of 3,500-km, is 16.7-metres tall, with a lift-off weight of 48 tons and a warhead of 1.5 tons.

    The Agni-III launch on Wednesday becomes important since it is the third time that the rail-mobile missile will be tested.

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    Union Cabinet Approves Women’s Reservation Bill

    May 6 – Late last evening, India's Union Cabinet cleared the contentious Women’s Reservation Bill in its original form for introduction in the Rajya Sabha (council for states). The women’s bill seeks to reserve one third seats for women in the Lok Sabha (people's council) and the state assemblies and is one of the last major commitments of the Congress-led UPA’s common minimum program, reported the Hindustan Times. Once introduced, the constitutional amendment bill would be routed to the standing committee to help hammer out a consensus on it.

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    The Cappuccino that Is India

    May 4 – An Indian investment banker recently likened India to a cappuccino, aptly summerizing the workings of the south asian country. “There's coffee at the bottom and lots of froth at the top,'' he says. “It can take a while to get to the coffee. People want more coffee and less froth.'' Dilip Parameswaran, head of Asia credit research at Calyon, Credit Agricole SA's investment-banking unit, told Bloomberg. Parameswaran's analygy of the coffee as actual growth and the foam as the bureaucracy is apt to summerise India's growth, wherein its might take an especially long time to get to the bottom of things.

    In a well written article on India, the pace of development and reasons for its slower growth as compared with China Bloomberg contemplates and contrasts, the advantages and disadvantage of the hare and tortoise and finds that the tortoise might just win this race too.

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    A booming pay Tv market in India

    April 28 – Indians are addicted to the idiot box. India's pay television industry is projected to grow at 16 percent annually to log revenues of US$11.3 billion by 2012 and emerge as a key driver of this business in Asia, says a new study by Hong Kong-based Media Partners Asia, a leading think tank on media and communications industry.

    The study says the total pay TV revenues in India will grow further to top US$18.5 billion by 2017, with subscription revenues of US$12.3 billion and advertising amounting to US$6.2 billion.

    "Much of the region's digital growth will be driven by China and India, though India will have a more significant impact for pay TV distributors and content suppliers," reported Sify.

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    India to tap into TAPI

    April 23 -India is gradually working towards quenching its thirst for more oil and gas. The country has decided to formally join the strategic U.S.-backed US$3.5 billion Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project this week. To formalise the agreeement Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister, Murli Deora led a delegation to Pakistan to sign the agreement for the TAPI pipeline at the invitation of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

    The meeting comes days before Inranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad visits New Delhi at the the end of April to discuss a US$7.4 billion natural gas pipeline from Iran through Pakistan to India. Iran holds the world's second-largest gas reserves.

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    Investing in India’s wind energy


    April 22 – India will soon have two new wind energy farms generating 183.2 mega watts of electricity at a total cost of US$250 million. The wind farms will be situated in the western state of Gujarat and the south Indian state of Karnataka and will partly be financed by loans from the Asian Development Bank the rest coming from private sponsors, inrenal funds and long term debt.

    India is already ranked fourth in the world for installed wind power generation, behind Germany, the U.S. and Spain. As of September 2007 India had over 7,200 MW of installed wind power capacity, with a gross potential for 45,000 MW.

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    Domestic companies give multinationals a run for their money

    April 21 – India has the second highest number of home grown companies that equally compete with multi national conglomerates, says a report put out by the Boston Consulting Group. India, which is second only to China had 11 companies that made it to the list, against China's 15. The report ranks 10 rapidly growing economies that are leading their markets and and fending off fierce competition with innovtive business models.

    The report said that common signs of leadership amongst the companies were their ability to customise products and services to meet different requirements of the consumers. While technology and globalisation was on their side, the report said that the home grown companies have often found low cost innovative ways to go national allowing them to take the lead.

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