Asia

India’s state-run banks reported fraud worth 958 billion rupees ($13.3 billion) from April to end-September of this year, the country’s finance minister said on Tuesday, as the government struggles to help banks recoup losses, Reuters reported. State banks reported 5,743 cases of fraud in the period, most of which had taken place over the last several years, although 1,000 cases worth 25 billion rupees had just taken place, Nirmala Sitharaman told the upper house of parliament. “Government has taken comprehensive measures to curb the incidence of fraud in banks,” the minister said.

Read more

In a related story, Bloomberg News reported that Chinese technology conglomerate Tunghsu Group Co. is looking to extend its bond payment deadlines after failing to settle its obligations this week, in the latest sign that the nation’s private-sector firms are struggling to ease their debt load amid an economic slowdown. Beijing-based Tunghsu Group mainly produces photoelectric display components, but also operates new energy, real estate and other businesses. Its three listed companies -- Tunghsu Optoelectronic Technology Co., Tunghsu Azure Renewable Energy Co.

Read more

From Chinese conglomerates to coal miners in Indonesia, companies in Asia are facing rising financial stress, prompting fears defaults will pick up next year, Bloomberg News reported. Weaker regional borrowers with dollar bonds yielding at least 15% could come under further pressure next year, when they have about $15.1 billion or nearly a third of such debt due, according to Bloomberg-compiled data. Amid rising failures in China, some firms are finding it harder to refinance their debt offshore, while Indian shadow lenders are grappling with a liquidity crunch.

Read more

Lenders of Jaypee Infratech on Monday discussed the bids submitted by NBCC Ltd and Suraksha Realty to acquire the debt-ridden firm in an insolvency process, and decided to meet again in November last week to negotiate with the two contenders, sources said, The Economic Times reported. A meeting of Committee of Creditors (CoC) was held on Monday in Gurugram, Haryana to discuss NBCC and Suraksha Realty's resolution plans that were submitted on Sunday.

Read more

Realtor Lingamaneni Ramesh and a strong supporter of former AP chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, on Monday filed an Insolvency Petition (IP) before the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) after allegedly failing to repay loans taken from creditors, The New Indian Express reported. A strong supporter of former Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, Lingamaneni Ramesh was recently in the news after he received notices for the demolition of the alleged illegal structures built by him in the 'karakatta' of river Krishna in Undavalli of Guntur district in Andhra Pradesh.

Read more

Homebuyers have filed more than 1,800 cases against builders under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) since June 2018, the government told the Lok Sabha on Monday, Business Standard reported. These are the number of cases pending before the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) as on September 30. Citing the information received from NCLT, Minister of State for Corporate Affairs Anurag Singh Thakur said that a total 1,821 cases have been filed by homebuyers against builders since June 2018 under the Code.

Read more

The Reserve Bank can now seek resolution of non-banking financial companies having assets worth of at least ₹500 crore under the insolvency law, a move that is likely to help in addressing woes in the NBFC sector, Mint reported. After discussions with the central bank, the corporate affairs ministry on Monday issued a notification specifying the categories of financial service providers (FSPs) that can be taken up for resolution under the "generic framework" of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.

Read more

The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on Monday directed the Synergy Group, the sole entity interested in the beleaguered Jet Airways, to appear before it and present a plan by December 3, The Financial Express reported. The direction came after the resolution professional (RP) for Jet Airways, Ashish Chhawchharia, told the bench that Colombia-based Synergy Group sought additional time till February to firm up its plans for Jet Airways. Cash-strapped Jet Airways has been grounded for seven months now and the airline was admitted for insolvency on June 20.

Read more

India unveiled rules to help creditors recover loans due from large shadow lenders as a prolonged upheaval in the nation’s credit markets raises the risk of defaults by the financiers, Bloomberg News reported, The amended law provides a generic framework for insolvency and liquidation proceedings of systemically-important financial services providers, other than banks, according to a government statement on Friday. The 15-month-old credit crisis has choked economic growth to its slowest pace in six years, while company defaults on rupee bonds are at a record high.

Read more

India’s central bank chief Shaktikanta Das called for stronger corporate governance at state-run lenders to make the country’s banking sector more efficient. Describing the lack of strict governance as the “elephant in the room,” Das said this had led to elevated levels of non-performing assets, capital shortfalls, fraud and inadequate risk management, Bloomberg News reported.

Read more