The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA), vide two notifications issued on 20 January 2018, revised the Companies (Incorporation) Rules, 2014 and the Companies (Registration Offices and Fees) Rules, 2014 (together, “Amendments”). The Amendments, effective from 26 January 2018, revise the procedure in relation to incorporation of a company in India and the associated fee. The Amendments further promote India’s continuing efforts in Ease of Doing Business as the revised process is intended to be simpler and quicker.
On 20 September, 2019, the Finance Minister announced a reduction in corporate tax rates estimated to provide cumulative tax relief of INR 1,45,000 Crore (approx. USD 21 billion) to corporate tax-payers. A Press Note issued by the Ministry of Finance on 20 September 2019 (Press Note) highlights the key amendments to the corporate tax regime introduced by the Taxation Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 (Ordinance) and further proposes increased avenues for corporate social responsibility spending. Some of the key features of the
The Indian Government had constituted the Competition Law Review Committee on 1 October 2018, with members from the Competition Commission of India (CCI) and the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India and headed by the Corporate Affairs Secretary (Committee). The Committee was tasked with reviewing the competition regulations and suggesting necessary changes to re-calibrate and strengthen the existing legal framework in order to promote best practices. The Committee submitted its report to the Indian Finance Minister on 14 August 2019 (Report),
The first session of the Indian Parliament after re-election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi concluded on 7 August 2019 (Session). The Session witnessed passage of more than 30 bills with the Lower House of the Indian Parliament (Lok Sabha) sitting for 281 hours in 37 days (approx. 135% of its scheduled hours) and the Upper House of the Indian Parliament (Rajya Sabha) sitting for 195 hours (approx. 103% of its scheduled hours) in 35 days – significantly higher than their respective average in past decades.
Based on the recommendations of stakeholders, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has liberalised end-use provisions for external commercial borrowings (ECBs) through a circular dated 30 July 2019 (Circular). Per the Circular, eligible borrowers are now permitted to raise ECBs from recognised lenders, except foreign branches/ overseas subsidiaries of Indian banks, for the following purposes: Working capital purposes and general corporate purposes, with a Minimum Average Maturity Period (MAMP) of 10 years. Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) can also raise ECBs for
The Finance Minister of India presented the Union Budget for India for the financial year 2019-2020 on 5 July 2019 (Budget), which aims to bolster several sectors such as infrastructure, roads, railways, agriculture, education, rural development, banking and finance thereby increasing jobs and bringing rural and urban India closer together to make India a USD 5 Trillion economy by 2024, as it moves towards becoming a USD 3 Trillion economy this year with the focus being on promoting ease of living for its citizens and ease of doing business in India and with India maintaining a 7% GDP growth in 2019-2020 as per the Economic Survey presented by the Government prior to the Budget.
On 7 June 2019, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) issued the Reserve Bank of India (Prudential Framework for Resolution of Stressed Assets) Directions 2019 (Directions), with the intent of ‘providing a framework for early recognition, reporting and time bound resolution of stressed assets.’ The Directions replace the Resolution of Stressed Assets – Revised Framework Circular (2018 Circular) issued by the RBI on 12 February 2018 which was struck down by the Supreme Court of India in the case of Dharani
A nine-judge bench of the Supreme Court of India (SC) on 24 August 2017 in K S Puttuswamy (Retd) and Anr. v. Union of India and Ors. (Privacy Case) unanimously held that privacy is a fundamental right, and that the ‘right to privacy is an integral part of both life and personal liberty under Article 21’ of the Constitution of India. The SC also overruled several cases including M P Sharma v. Satish Chandra, District Magistrate, Delhi (1954) SCR 1077 and Kharak Singh v. State of Uttar Pradesh (1964) 1 SCR 332, where the right to privacy was not considered as a fundamental right.
On 15 November 2019, the Central Government notified the Insolvency and Bankruptcy (Insolvency and Liquidation Proceedings of Financial Service Providers and Application to Adjudicating Authority) Rules, 2019 (FSP Rules). The FSP Rules aim to provide a framework for insolvency and liquidation of systemically important financial service providers (FSPs) other than banks and are currently applicable to non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) with an asset size of INR 500 Crores (approx. USD 70 million) or more, as per a notification issued by the
The President of India on 3 May 2018 gave his assent to the ordinance (Ordinance) amending the Commercial Courts, Commercial Division and Commercial Appellate Division of High Courts Act, 2015 (Act). By way of background, the Act was enacted with an intention of faster resolution of matters in relation to commercial disputes thereby creating a positive outlook for foreign investors.