Feb – March 2022

President’s Letter

Dear Industry Members,

India’s core sector growth rose to a four-month high in February, boosted by a recovery in steel, electricity, and refinery products, data released by the commerce and industry ministry.

The index of eight core-industries rose 5.8% in February compared with 4% in the month before and -3.3% in February last year. The index measures the output of eight sectors namely coal, steel, cement, fertilizer, electricity, natural gas, refinery products and crude oil.  The growth for April – February is 11% against 8.1% contraction in the previous fiscal. The negative and low base effect has propped up production for all segments.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has pared India’s growth forecast for FY23 to 8.2% from 9% forecast in January, citing weaker demand as high crude oil prices weigh on private consumption and investment. India will remain the fastest growing major economy despite the 0.8%-point cut. The global economy is seen growing at 3.6% in 2022, slower than the 4.4% forecast earlier.

The IMF said global economic prospects have worsened and external positions are generally expected to deteriorate, particularly for net oil importers. The IMF warned that, the economic effects of war are spreading far and wide like seismic waves through commodity markets, trade, and financial linkages.

Global growth is expected to slip due to the spillover impact of the war in Ukraine and sanctions on Russia, tightening monetary policy due to high inflation in many countries, and frequent and wide-ranging lockdowns in China. Both Russia and Ukraine are projected to experience large GDP contractions in 2022, Russia’s economy is forecast to shrink 8.5% in 2022 and 2.3% in 2023.

India Inc. is rewiring organizational risk models in the wake of inflationary pressures provoked by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and sweeping lockdowns in China that have hit supply chains and transformed the business landscapes. Companies have been forced to look into Indonesia, Thailand, Bangladesh and Vietnam as sourcing alternatives to China.

The government is looking to speed up work to achieve its ambitious target to raise Rs. 1.62 lakh crore through asset monetization in FY 2023. Secretaries from 12 ministries had a meeting to discuss their detailed roadmap with clear timelines for monetizing assets such as power lines, gas pipelines, roads, and railways assets among others.

The government will continue to hold roadshows and market the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) public issue, but the offer may be pushed to the next fiscal year because of market volatility due to the Russia Ukraine conflict. The country’s biggest life insurer had filed the draft offer document for a 5% stake sale by the government on February 13. The initial public offer (IPO), expected to be the country’s biggest ever, was initially planned for the month of March 2022, but when a war of this magnitude is happening, a review is certainly required an official told referring to the Ukrainian crisis and the upheaval it has caused in the global financial market.  

Russia has assured India that defence supplies will not be hit by the western sanctions announced against Moscow and that alternative mechanism are in place to ensure that crucial contracts such as the S-400 air defence system are not disrupted. The Indian Air Force (IAF), which operates a variety of Russian- origin equipment, including the Su30MKI and MiG series of fighters, has also said that there may be certain difficulties but the announced sanctions are not expected to have a major impact.

Domestic sale of vehicles in February do not indicate an overall positive trend. Most of the OEMs have reported fall in sales, for some it is a mixed bag. Chip shortage and supply chain constraints have improved over the past months, however fresh concerns have arisen around the ongoing Russian – Ukraine crisis impacting the supply chains and the semiconductor shortage. The passenger vehicle OEMs have a lot of catching up to do. The Commercial vehicle segment has been looking up. The stagnant demand for two wheelers is a major concern.

The pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns around the world brought the travel and tourism sector to a standstill, putting a major dent on the economy. However, with Covid-19 cases declining and things opening up gradually, the sector is looking forward to brighter times. The travel and tourism sector’s contribution to the global economy could reach $8.6 trillion this year, just 6.4 per cent behind pre-pandemic levels, new research from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) stated.

Further, the global tourism body highlighted that the sector could create 58 million jobs in 2022, to reach more than 330 million, just 1 per cent below pre-pandemic levels and up by 21.5 per cent of 2020 levels if the vaccine and booster rollout continue at pace this year, and international travel restrictions are eased around the world throughout the year.

Coming to our home state Kerala, the Government is launching the “Thelineerozhukum Navakeralam’ campaign to protect the entire waterbodies in the state by using scientific and liquid waste management systems against the backdrop of the depletion of water resources in Kerala as a result of rapid modernization and urbanization. Thelineerozhukum Navakeralam is a comprehensive water sanitation campaign launched as part of the Navakeralam Action Plan to conserve the  water resources of the state. This grassroots campaign plays an important role in nurturing the socio-economic and health scenario  of the state by the efficient  utilization  of the water resources in Kerala. The campaign is being organized by Haritha Kerala Mission and Suchithwa Mission under the auspicious  of Local Self Government Departments.

The digital platform of Consumer Disputes Redressal has Commissioned, Consumer dispute complaints can now be filed online in the state.  The complaints received online will be vetted immediately and the complainant will be given a number and alerted about the date and time of hearing online. The complaints will be admitted within 21 days of their receipt after hearing from the opposite parties. No fee will be collected in the case of complaints regarding products or services valued at not more than ₹5 lakh. Consumers, however, will have the option of choosing either online filing or physical filing of complaints. Complainants should mention in their complaints specifically if they prefer online hearing of their petitions.

Department of Higher Education, has implemented the Skills Development Initiative which offering Skill Loan to students and educated job   students and educated job seekers through Canara Bank, in collaboration with ASAP Kerala. Students who are currently pursuing their studies and graduates who have completed their studies can obtain additional skills in their respective fields of employment without any guarantee or collateral.  Skill loans ranging from Rs 5,000 to Rs 1.5 lakh are available. There will be a moratorium on the course duration and subsequent six months, with a repayment period of three to seven years.

We whole heartedly support this initiative taken by the State Government to support the students and the educated job seekers.

Moving on as part of the chamber’s India Forward Talk Series, I am happy to inform you that for the February edition of the India Forward Series, we hosted Shri. Surjit Bhalla, Executive Director for India at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as the Guest Speaker on 17 February 2022 through video conference, his talk was based on ” Budget 2022 – India Forward”.

The Ninth meeting of the CEO Forum was held on 26 February 2022. Mr. Prasad K. Panicker, Director & Head (Refinery), Nayara Energy Ltd. was the Speaker, he spoke on the topic: Future of Oil. In his speech he mentioned the history of Oil and major Industrial revolutions revolving around with growing demand of oils in multiple sectors. He also mentioned about the factors causing the fuel price hike and impact of war in future price of oil. The video recording of this session was uploaded on the Chamber’s YouTube Channel and this can be viewed there.

The First meeting of the 8th edition of the CEO Forum networking breakfast meeting 2022 was initiated on Saturday 26 March 2022 at Marian One, GIDA Road, Queens Way, Kochi, wherein Mr. James Joseph, Founder, Jackfruit365.com was the Guest Speaker. He spoke on the topic: “Jackfruit 365 : A Clinically Proven Solution For Diabetes”. Mr. James Joseph gave awareness session enlightening life style diseases and clinically proven solution of consuming Jackfruit powder in certain proportion with our daily diet to overcome diabetes.

The Chamber have submitted a representation to the Director General of Shipping & the Cochin Port Trust, mentioning about the limited authorization given to 29 Protection and Indemnity Insurers, despite the fact that there are around 2000 plus P & I clubs around the globe has resulted in restrictions on vessels insured by P & I clubs other than the above mentioned 29. Chamber highlighted this issue as very important, which if addressed will bring in lot of foreign exchange to the country and smooth out the International trade. The Directorate General of Shipping have positively responded to our representation and they will allow more P & I clubs to operate in this regards. A Press release mentioning about the Chamber representation and the issues highlighting the impact of trade has been added in this newsletter.  

I would like to mention that the Cochin Chamber did a 2 days online Workshop on Decoding the New Labour Codes on 19th & 26th February 2022, and the Speaker was Mr. Israel Inbaraj, GM (HR) Tata Consultancy Services Ltd., there were more than 45 plus participants attended the programme.

The Chamber also did an online Workshop on New Trends in Packaging on Saturday, 19 March 2022. Mr. N. Natarajan, Deputy Director and Regional Head of Indian Institute of Packaging (Hyderabad) was the speaker. Mr Natarajan spoke about the importance of bio-degradable and eco-friendly packaging.

Thank you, and Stay Safe.

Recent Union Cabinet Decisions

February 2022

March 2022

Forthcoming Events

  • India Forward talk Series – “$ 10 Trillion Dream.” with Mr. Subash Chandra Garg , Indian Economist and Former Finance Secretary of India – 09.04.2022

  • CEO FORUM Breakfast Meeting with Dr. Mathew Abraham, Senior Consultant (Neurology) at Crowne Plaza – 20.05.2022

  • An Exclusive Interaction with Dr. P. Nandalal Weerasinghe, Governor of Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) on the Topic “Inflation a Solution – not a Problem” – 28.05.2022

Recent Events

  • Budget 2022- Decoding Direct Tax Provisions in Fine Print – 10.02.2022

  • India Forward talk Series – Budget 2022 -with Dr. Surjit Bhalla, Executive Director for India at the International Monetary Fund (IMF)

    The Cochin Chamber of Commerce & Industry Conducted the “India Forward” series featuring Shri. Surjit Bhalla, Executive Director for India at the  International Monetary Fund (IMF) as the Speaker on Thursday, the 17th of February 2022. Shri. Surjit Bhalla spoke on “Budget – 2022.”

    His strong views on Indian Economy that:

  • Given the fact that India’s fundamentals are good,  India can do it even though  it’s been very bad one and a half years, but we can climb out of here.
  • The World Economic Outlook (WEO), which is considered the gold standard for forecasts of growth India is back on track for 21-22 and onwards and indeed has one of the highest growth rates for next four years. That is, if you take out the pandemic period, India is absolutely back on track.

This session was great insight to the Indian economy and was attended by more than 70 delegates.

  • Workshop on Decoding New Labour Code – 19.02.2022 & 26.02.2022

  • CEO Forum Virtual Meeting with Mr Prasad. K. Panicker, Director & Head (Refinery) on the topic : “Future of Oil” – 26.02.2022

  • Session on New Trends in Packaging “Importance of bio-degradable & eco-friendly packaging” – 19.03.2022

  • CEO Forum Breakfast Meeting with Mr. James Joseph, Founder, Jackfruit365.com on “Jackfruit365, A Clinically proven solution for Diabetes” – 26.03.2022

Chamber’s Research Wing

Exim Statistics

01-MARCH-2022 TO 31-MARCH-2022
CIN U91110KL1938NPL001413
Sector 20′ 40′ TEUS QTY.(KGS)
AFRICA 69 117 303 3621129
AFRICA EAST 24 75 174 1729311
AFRICA SOUTH 9 37 83 680435
AFRICA WEST 30 41 112 1364967
AUSTRALIA/NEW ZEALAND 122 72 266 2693304
C.I.S 7 19 45 502086
CANADA/GREAT LAKE 21 80 181 1714422
FAR EAST/JAPAN 453 616 1685 20876368
MEDITERRANEAN 193 487 1167 12842549
PERSIAN GULF 1634 813 3260 38982146
U.K. & IRELAND 111 185 481 5421734
U.S.A ATLANTIC 19 117 253 2668348
U.S.A.  SOUTH 11 38 87 745018
U.S.A. CENTRAL 0 7 14 172672
U.S.A. EAST COAST 176 613 1402 12252195
U.S.A. INLAND PORTS 22 56 134 1368513
U.S.A. WEST COAST 20 121 262 2231439
GRAND TOTAL          3253 4280 11813 126548323