Indian steel giant Tata Steel is planning investments in Canada after a recent study confirmed the financial viability of iron ore mining and pellet project in the region.

Tata Steel is a strategic partner and the biggest stakeholder in the Toronto Stock Exchange-listed New Millennium Iron Corp (NML), which is pursuing the project.

“The project financials have been evaluated with capital expenses, excluding certain infrastructure-related capital expenses in the mine, port and ferroduct (of over 600 km to carry the ore concentrate slurry to the pellet unit),” NML said.

The project could produce 17 million tonnes a year two types of pellets and 6 million tonnes a year of pellet intermediates for export.

NML had decided to submit “a single environmental impact statement covering all the components of the project”.

American manufacturer of glass, ceramics and related materials, Corning Inc, is looking to tie up with local device makers to expand its market in India.

Corning is the maker of Gorilla Glass, which is used to cover touch screens in the most high-end mobile handsets. It now wants to expand into India as it is considered the world’s fastest-growing smartphone markets.

It is a critical market in terms of sales and manufacturing and last year it also set up a fibre optic manufacturing plant in the country.

It is seeking to work with local manufacturers through the value chain, right down to contract manufacturing, which is done in China, such that the Indian handset makers use Corning Glass in most of their smartphones.

India’s smartphone market is expected to double in 2014 as local original equipment makers (OEMs) are moving from feature phones to smartphones.

Founded in 1851, Corning Inc is a diversified manufacturer with five major business sectors - Display Technologies, Environmental Technologies, Life Sciences, Telecommunications and Specialty Materials.

Hero Motor Corp Limited, which is India’s largest two-wheeler maker, is all set to open its first overseas manufacturing unit in Bangladesh through a joint venture.

Hero will be forming a JV with Bangladesh’s Nitol Niloy group in which they will hold a 55 per cent stake and the remaining will be held by Nitol. Both the companies plan to invest $40 million in the next five years.

The unit is expected to be operational by the July to September quarter of 2015 and will have an annual capacity of 150,000 units.

Through its entry in Bangladesh, Hero plans to grow its presence globally, especially in South America and Africa where there is demand for inexpensive motorcycles.

Hero MotoCorp is selling a range of motorcycles in Bangladesh through the initial 50 retail outlets. It aims to have around 20 per cent of market share in Bangladesh in the first year of operation.

Nitol Niloy is a diversified group with interests in various sectors and markets Tata Motors’ vehicles in Bangladesh.

Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) has divested its stake in the Peru oil and gas block in an effort to trim its overseas assets.

RIL, through its wholly owned subsidiary Reliance Exploration and Production (REP) DMCC, has divested its 30 per cent stake in Block 108 to Australia’s Woodside Petroleum and Pluspetrol of Argentina, who are the existing partners in the block.

Dubai-based REP DMCC was founded in 2007 and had steadily acquired 15 conventional oil and gas assets, including four in Peru, three in Yemen (one producing and two exploratory), two each in Oman, Kurdistan and Colombia and one each in East Timor and Australia.

Recently it was awarded two blocks in Myanmar. The company had also acquired interests in three shale gas ventures in the US. It was also looking at investment opportunities in oil and gas fields in Iraq.

RIL has made an exit from nearly a dozen properties during the past couple of years.

India’s largest multinational software services provider, Tata Consultancy Services Ltd (TCS) has entered into an agreement with Japan’s largest integrated business enterprise Mitsubishi Corp to create a Japanese software services provider.

According to the definitive agreement signed, Tata Consultancy Services Japan Ltd, Nippon TCS Solution Center Ltd and IT Frontier Corporation - a wholly owned unit of Mitsubishi - will be merged together to form a single entity.

The merged new entity will be operational from July and TCS will hold 51 per cent stake where as Mitsubishi will hold 49 per cent stake.

TCS has been present in Japan since 1987 and has continued to invest in the country by setting up new facilities. The transaction shows the company’s commitment to the Japanese market.

The Japanese IT services market is estimated to be a little over $125 billion, but Japan accounts for less than 2 per cent of India’s software exports because of language and cultural barriers.

“This strategic transaction signifies our serious commitment to the Japan market. TCS will now have the scale, strong local presence and our full range of global capabilities to serve the Japanese corporations effectively and accelerate our growth in Japan market," said N. Chandrasekaran, CEO and managing director of TCS.

Qatar based Doha Bank has entered into an agreement with HSBC Bank Oman to purchase its banking business in India.

According to the agreement, all the staff of HSBC’s business will also be transferred to the Qatar-based bank. Even though the financial details of the deal were not disclosed, the Doha Bank said that the business comprised of two branches and gross assets worth $58 million as of end of 2013.

The deal is subject to approval from regulatory authorities in Qatar, India, Oman and Jersey.

The deal is seen as a means for the Doha Bank to expand its footprint in the growing Indian market. The bank had recently announced its decision to open its first branch in Mumbai in May and has set a target of $5 billion balance-sheet by the third year of operations in India.

Incorporated in 1978, Doha Bank has branches in Kuwait, Dubai and Abu Dhabi and representative offices in Singapore, Turkey, Japan, China, Britain, Canada, Germany, Australia, Hong Kong, South Korea and Sharjah.

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