The major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a dismal note. Stock markets in China, Hong Kong and Japan are down by 2.4%, 2.9% and 2% respectively. Both the stock markets in Europe and US closed the previous session in deep red yesterday. The rupee is trading at 66.05 per US dollar.
As per a report by Investment Information and Credit Rating Agency (ICRA), L&T Halol Shamlaji Tollway Ltd (HSTL) delayed scheduled payments to its lenders on a loan worth Rs 10bn in August. The special purpose vehicle carried out the four -laning of 173.06km of state highway from Halol to Shamlaji in Gujarat. Following the default, ICRA has downgraded the long term loan programme of L&T HSTL to 'D' from its previous rating of 'BB+'. As per an article in Livemint, a 'D' rating indicates that the instrument in question is in default or will default on maturity. ICRA stated that the delay in payments were because of lower than expected traffic volumes, leading to shortfall in toll collection. However the company official stated that the payment towards the loan due on August has been paid. The stock of Larsen and Toubro (L&T) is trading down by 1.5%.
As per an article in Business Standard, in order to speed up the construction of roads, the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) is planning to acquire 10,000 hectares of land in 2015-16. The NHAI has been awarded 2340km of highway projects so far in 2015-16, up from 1100km during the corresponding period a year ago. Reportedly, according to NHAI chairman, Raghav Chandra the project reports have become outdated due to delay in the acquisition of the land. The authority has been working towards strengthening its land acquisition division. The teams in these divisions are taking steps to fasten the land acquisition process from the various state governments. While the new land act has made the cost of project expensive, yet the process of land acquisition has not fastened so far.