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UPA goes slow on telecom reforms - Views on News from Equitymaster
 
 
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  • Jun 17, 2009

    UPA goes slow on telecom reforms

    2G spectrum allocation delayed
    A swift pace of reforms and quick decisions is what the markets are expecting of the newly elected government. The fact that markets are extremely gung-ho about this is evident from the way they have been rising since the outcome of the elections. But one highly protracted issue related to telecom spectrum, that one would have expected to be cleared on a fast note, has just been the victim of another delay.

    As reported in a leading business daily, the decision on additional 2G (second generation - technology on which the current mobile services run) spectrum has been postponed to until after the upcoming auction of third generation (3G) spectrum. This is because the communications minister and the finance minister have been unable to reach a consensus on key issues related to 3G auctions such as the base price for these frequencies and the number of players to be allowed to offer these services. With already so many deliberations having haunted this issue for a while now, it was already high time that a decision be reached with the promptness it deserves.

    But with that now seeming unlikely to happen, we wonder how this over optimistic stockmarket will react to other such delays if they were to happen going forward.

    Obama warns Wall Street
    After yesterday's weak performance, most Asian markets have opened today in the positive. These gains are despite the weak showing by the US markets yesterday, as the Dow Jones Industrial Index dropped by almost 1.3%. This followed President Obama's comments that unemployment rate in the US is set to touch the 10% mark, largely on the back of job losses in the financial sector. In a speech, Obama chided Wall Street for criticizing the US government's policies to stem the recessionary tide. He said, "Wall Street seems to maybe have a shorter memory about how close we were to the abyss than I would have expected."

    Now, while Obama maintains a grim view on the unemployment scenario, he still maintains that the engines of the US economy have started to turn. And as his team work towards stricter financial sector regulations so as to avert future crises, Obama has a view - "Derivatives are a huge potential risk to the system. We are going to make sure that they have to register, that they are regulated, that you have clearinghouses."

    After nearly three decades of de-regulation, a wide spectrum of financial services in the US would once again be brought under strict legislations. These would not just control the unregulated bodies but also make the executives responsible for their decisions. The purpose is to craft a framework of financial regulations influenced by the lessons learnt from the current crisis. A welcome move indeed!

     

     

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