Modi launches Asia’s largest solar plant in MP after move against China imports; China’s central bank cuts stake in HDFC

Modi launches Asia’s largest solar plant in MP after move against China imports; China’s central bank cuts stake in HDFC

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday underscored the importance of self-reliance on solar power amid trade tensions with China – a major exporting nation – as he launched Asia’s largest solar plant in Madhya Pradesh’s Rewa through video-conferencing.

The prime minister said that Madhya Pradesh will emerge as a major hub for clean and cheap power in the country with the launch of the massive 750 megawatt (MW) solar power plant.

 India last week announced it would stop solar equipment imports from China and Pakistan amid the tension along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and the resulting counter-attacks in trade.

 While inaugurating the solar project, PM Modi said that solar energy will be a medium of energy needs of the 21st century because solar power is sure, pure and secure and the country is now among the top five solar power producers in the world. He added that India has emerged as the most attractive global market for clean energy.

Even the Delhi Metro will get power from the Rewa solar project, said PM Modi.

The Rewa project consists of three solar generating units of 250 MW each located on a 500 hectare plot of land situated inside a 15,000 hectare solar park. The Rewa Ultra Mega Solar Limited (RUMSL), a joint venture company of the Madhya Pradesh Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (MPUVN), and the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) developed the solar park.

People’s Bank of China cuts stake in HDFC

In a significant development, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), after raising its stake in India’s largest private lender, Housing Development Finance Corp, in April, has now trimmed it to below 1 per cent.

The People’s Bank of China has dropped off the list of investors holding at least a 1 per cent stake in the company as of end-June. The PBOC held about 17.5 million shares, accounting for a 1.01 per cent shares, at end-March.

PBOC had increased its stake in HDFC in the 12 months ended March. The Indian government in April tightened rules on investments in its companies from neighbouring countries including China in order to reduce the risk of opportunistic takeovers amid coronavirus-led share price drops.

As it is mandatory for publicly-traded companies in India to disclose shareholdings of more than 1 per cent at the end of every quarter, according to India’s largest mortgage lender’s latest statement, HDFC’s global institutional holders include the Government of Singapore as well as funds run by Vanguard and Invesco Oppenheimer.

HDFC shares fell as much as 2.2 per cent in Mumbai in early trading today. The stock dropped 40 per cent from its January record high to its April low but has since rebounded 27 per cent.

HDFC Bank had received a lot of criticism from various quarters over the PBOC raising stake in it, and was even targeted on social media, with many Indians saying they would withdraw their money and close their accounts.