India's financial sector is robust & well-governed, assure senior leaders & industry captains

  • IANS
  • Stock Market News
India's financial sector is robust & well-governed, assure senior leaders & industry captains
Credit: © Reuters.

New Delhi, Feb 28 (IANS) The Adani Group is a portfolio of businesses with strong fundamentals and robust assets. Over the years, it has consistently reported excellent financial and operational performance.

Senior leaders and captains of the industry have come forward to assure the country that India's financial sector is robust and well-governed. They have cautioned investors against believing those who question India's ability to govern itself.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has described India as "a very well-regulated financial market".

Quoting LIC's and SBI (NS: SBI )'s senior leadership, she assured investors that the two institutions are not overexposed to Adani Group stocks.

"They have very clearly said that their exposure (to Adani Group) is very well within the permitted limits and with valuation falling as well, they are still over profit. That is the word from the horse's mouth," she said.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has put to rest concerns about PSU banks' exposure to the Adani Group. The RBI said that the "banking sector remains resilient and stable".

It added that, as the regulator and supervisor, RBI maintains a constant vigil on the banking sector and on individual banks with a view to maintain financial stability.

Subsequently, RBI Deputy Governor M.K. Jain said that bank exposure to the Adani Group is "not very significant" and also that exposure against shares of Adani companies is "insignificant".

He added, "Domestic banks' exposure is against underlying assets, operating cash flows, projects under implementation and not based on the market cap."

Former SEBI Executive Director J.N. Gupta said the Hindenburg report lacks credibility because of the short positions - designed to profit from a fall in stock price - that the US-based firm has.

"In my opinion, the Hindenburg report is not a gospel truth," he said.

Explaining the motive behind Hindenburg's action, he added, "A report can be called credible if there is no motive attached to it. In this particular case, there appears to be two motives. One, clearly stated that they have a short position. The other is an indirect motive, aimed at causing maximum harm to the shares of Adani Group, once again to further their motive of short selling."

In a move that will further boost market confidence in the Adani Group's strong fundamentals, Devendra Fadnavis, Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra, said the state will soon issue a government resolution (GR) formally awarding the Dharavi redevelopment project to the Adani Group.

"A few nitty-gritties are to be worked out before the GR is issued. It will be done very soon," he said.

In the south, the Government of Kerala has agreed to provide Adani Ports Rs 400 crore when 30 per cent of the breakwater construction at the Vizhinjam Port is completed. As work picks up pace, the state government is working on raising the required funds.

SBI Chairman Dinesh Khara said that the bank has not extended any loans against the shares of Adani Group companies, demystifying the exposure of the state lender to Adani Group's stocks.

He said, "The stock price will not impact our loans. It is all against assets that are cash generating and have an excellent track record in repayments."

He added that SBI's exposure to the Adani Group is around Rs 27,000 crore or 0.8 per cent to 0.9 per cent of its loan book. He also said that SBI does not see any challenges in servicing the loans.

"We have lent to Adani for projects which have tangible assets and have adequate cash collections. They are able to meet obligations."

LIC CEO Siddhartha Mohanty is positive on Adani stocks. He said that all investments by LIC were made in accordance with the company's standard operating procedures.

DBS Bank, one of the 'Big Three' banks in Singapore, has also put its weight behind the Adani Group.

Referring to the Adani portfolio of companies, Piyush Gupta, CEO of DBS, said, "They are solid, cash-generating companies. So, we are not concerned about the exposure."

Southeast Asia's largest bank sees "huge potential" in the cement industry and is confident that the bank's exposure is "quite tightly managed". DBS provided $750 million to the Adani Group during last year's acquisition of Holcim (SIX: HOLN )'s cement business in India.

Describing investments in the Adani Group's gas and renewable energy businesses as "healthy", Patrick Pouyanne, CEO of TotalEnergies, said, "These companies [ATGL & AGEL] have assets and revenue. Adani Green is still worth twice as much as we invested. Adani Gas is still worth eight times more. Our accounting is healthy, there was due diligence before and due diligence after."

Underlining the significance of the Adani Group's green energy initiatives, Erik Solheim, noted green activist, diplomat, and former Norwegian Minister for Climate Change, expressed solidarity with the business group and tweeted, "Adani has been under heavy attack for the last couple of weeks. It's very important to know Adani's response. Adani Green is a most important company for India's green future."

Addressing concerns around the stock valuation of Adani, Prakash Kacholia, MD of Emkay Global Financial Services, said that the medium-term implications of the allegations against the Adani Group are unlikely to be significant.

"While we are not forensic accountants, almost all major assets of the Adani Group are in ports, airports, power and transmission, and roads, where returns are regulated and unit numbers are reported to various regulatory bodies," he said.

Rubbishing suggestions that banks in India would have lent to the Adani Group "on instructions from higher-ups", DLF (NS: DLF ) Chairman K.P. Singh said the turmoil engulfing the Adani Group following the allegations levelled by the US-based short seller has not shaken the faith of global investors in India.

Uday Kotak, Chairman of Kotak Mahindra Bank (NS: KTKM ), said that he "does not see systemic risk to the Indian financial system".

He added that "large Indian corporates relying more on global sources for debt and equity finance creates challenges and vulnerabilities, and it is time to further strengthen Indian underwriting and capacity building".

Sanjiv Chadha, MD & CEO of Bank of Baroda (NS: BOB ), said that the bank will continue to lend to the Adani Group.

In another statement, he said that Bank of Baroda is willing to consider lending additional money to the Adani Group, including for remodelling of the Dharavi redevelopment project.

"You have underwriting standards and you stick to them in good times as well as bad times," Chadha said, adding that he is not concerned about the market volatility around Adani stocks.

Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS ) has said that Adani Ports' debt is well capitalised with cash on hand, while being liquid enough to trade. It also expects the company to be able to refinance its bonds while also having the prospect of attracting equity investors and selling assets.

Credit ratings agency Fitch Ratings too has dispelled concerns about the Adani Group's companies, stating that there is no immediate impact on the ratings of the Fitch-rated Adani entities and their securities.

Fitch added that it expects no material changes to its forecast cash flow and informed that there are also no near-term significant offshore bond maturities, reducing refinancing risks and near-term liquidity risks.

Later, the agency also said that the exposure of Indian banks to the Adani Group is insufficient to present substantial risk to the banks' standalone credit profiles. It added that it believes the economic and sovereign implications of the Adani controversy remain limited.

Moody's pointed out that the credit ratings for Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd, Adani Green Energy (NS: ADNA ) Ltd, and Adani Transmission (NS: ADAI ) Ltd are underpinned by their regulated infrastructure businesses with long-term sales contracts, or their strong operating cash flows and dominant market position.

Dismissing concerns about the quality of the Adani Group's debt, financial services major JP Morgan Chase (NYSE: JPM ) said that Adani Group companies remain eligible for inclusion in CEMBI, JACI and JESG indices, as per current index rules. Besides CEMBI and JACI, Adani's dollar bonds remain eligible to be part of JP Morgan's ESG Global Corporate Index (JESG).

Echoing the sentiments of industry leaders, Anand Mahindra, Chairman of the Mahindra Group, said, "Global media is speculating whether current challenges in the business sector will trip India's ambitions to be a global economic force. I've lived long enough to see us face earthquakes, droughts, recessions, wars, terror attacks. All I will say is: Never, ever bet against India."

Former Solicitor General Harish Salve, one of India's top legal minds, said, "Nobody is happy that Indian businessmen are making their presence felt globally."

He said that the accusations against the Adani Group is a wholesale assault on India and Indians, adding that most of Adani's assets are regulated. Salve also said that the records of the Adani Group companies are in the public domain, and for someone to say that they did some hidden research is "all nonsense".

The Mauritius Financial Services Commission has not found any breach of law by the companies and funds linked to the Adani Group, according to its CEO Dhanesswurnath Vikash Thakoor.

"Based on the submissions we have got so far with respect to what they are supposed to do, we have not found any breach of law, notwithstanding the fact that a number of these entities were also subjected to our routine onsite inspection according to our cycle," said the Chief of the Mauritius' securities market regulator.

Refuting the allegations levelled by Rahul Gandhi that the Mumbai airport was wrested from the GVK Group by the Adani Group, GVK Vice Chairman Sanjay Reddy said that the Adani Group's offer had come as a welcome relief for the GVK Group which had then been under debt repayment pressure.

He also revealed that the Adani Group Chairman had been willing to close the transaction very quickly to help the GVK Group meet its repayments.



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  • Rakesh Prasad @Rakesh Prasad
    Joke of the day , That fonancial sector well governed. Even regulator like SEBI is corrupted by political ptessure.
    Like 0
  • Irfan Ghani @Irfan Ghani
    Glad to here this Mr. IANS. All we got is to market our services to built an fortune and far beyond the negative gambler
    Like 0
  • makarand Nnn @makarand Nnn
    Manipulations and fallacy of reports and news is rampant in India
    Like 1

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