Britain’s Cairn hopeful of solution in $1.2 billion-plus tax tussle with India

CPSE strategic sale: Govt makes security clearance mandatory for all bidders

The government has tweaked the guidelines for strategic disinvestment, making security clearance mandatory for all bidders who put in price bids for buying a central public sector enterprise (CPSE).

Cairn Energy Plc said on Sunday it had discussed multiple proposals with Indian government officials in recent days in an attempt to find a “swift solution” to a long-drawn-out tax dispute with the South Asian nation.

This month, Cairn filed a case in a U.S. district court to enforce the arbitration award, taking an initial step in its efforts toward recovering dues

Cairn Energy Plc said on Sunday it had discussed multiple proposals with Indian government officials in recent days in an attempt to find a “swift solution” to a long-drawn-out tax dispute with the South Asian nation. In December, an arbitration body awarded the British firm damages of $1.2 billion-plus interest and costs, after ruling India had breached its obligations to Cairn under the U.K.-India Bilateral Investment Treaty.

This month, Cairn filed a case in a U.S. district court to enforce the arbitration award, taking an initial step in its efforts toward recovering dues. The U.S. court this week issued electronic summons to the Indian government to file its response to the lawsuit within 60 days or face a judgment by default. In a release on Sunday, Cairn said it had held “cordial and constructive discussions” with officials from the Indian finance ministry.

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“We remain hopeful that an acceptable solution can be found, in order to avoid further prolonging and exacerbating this
negative issue for all parties,” the company said, adding it is also ready to take all necessary steps to protect the interests of its shareholders.

The Indian government welcomes Cairn’s move to reach out for a resolution but plans to file an appeal against the arbitration award and contest its sovereign right to tax, said a government official in New Delhi, who asked not to be identified.

GeM portal expects procurement of over Rs 1 lakh cr in FY22: CEO

Goods and services worth over Rs 1 lakh crore are expected to be procured from the public procurement portal GeM in 2021-22 on account of a sharp increase in buying activities by ministries like defence and PSUs, a senior official said.

Cairn took the case to arbitration in 2015 to fight a demand from Indian authorities in 2014 for 102 billion rupees ($1.4 billion) in taxes that India said it was owed on capital gains related to the 2007 listing of its local unit.India lost another major international arbitration case last September against telecommunications giant Vodafone over a $2 billion retrospective tax dispute.

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