5G Spectrum Sale Date Announced, British MPs Back Boris Johnson's Brexit Plan, Colombia Bans Uber

Govt planning to implement all four labour codes on single date in 2020. Bengaluru has the highest number of young billionaires in India. 5G spectrum sale to be held in March-April 2020, no reduction in prices. Bharti Airtel adds record 12mn subscribers in October-November 2019. SEC probing market debuts of Slack and other unicorns. After London and Germany, Colombia bans Uber. Ride-hailing firms join forces in California to fight new gig economy law. British MPs back Boris Johnson's plan to leave EU on 31 January 2020. US government to support Bayer's appeal of Roundup cancer verdict.

 

 

INDIA

Govt planning to implement all four labour codes on single date in 2020.

Big Day: The government is reportedly planning to implement all four labour codes on a single date next year.

 

“The thinking within the government is that a single date for the implementation of all the four labour codes will be fruitful because it will ensure uniformity and will lead to an efficient execution,” a Labour and Employment Ministry official was quoted as saying. BS

 

FYI: The labour code on wages has already become a law. The remaining three codes - on industrial relations, social secutiry and welfare, and occupational safety, health and working conditions - have been introduced in the Lok Sabha. It is when all these codes become laws that industry will have to apply for a single registration instead of separate labour law registrations.

Bengaluru has the highest number of young billionaires in India.

Where the Rich Live: Bengaluru is India's Millennial billionaire capital. As per the Hurun India Rich List 2019, 10 of the top 17 self-made billionaire entrepreneurs reside in this city. The richest among these is Nithin Kamath, founder and CEO of discount brokerage start-p Zerodha, followed by Flipkart co-founders Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal.

 

Mumbai, meanwhile, registered the most number of billionaires across all ages. Livemint

 

TELECOM

5G spectrum sale to be held in March-April 2020, no reduction in prices.

5G Days: Much to the dismay of debt-struck telecom companies, the government has decided to not reduce the price of airwaves in its 5G spectrum sale - which has been scheduled to be held in March-April 2020.

 

The Digital Communications Commission, the apex decision-making body of he telecom department, approved the spectrum sale yesterday. It entails 8,300Mhz across 22 circles and at reserve price will fetch the exchequer INR5.22Lcr.

 

The Commission expects demand for the spectrum to be healthy, even though telcos have expressed anguish over "high reserve prices", especially at a time when they are going through several financial crises. ToI

Bharti Airtel adds record 12mn subscribers in October-November 2019.

Meanwhile: As per data submitted by Bharti Airtel to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, the telco added a record 12mn 4G subscribers during the October-November 2019 period. This reflects a five-fold jump over the monthly average of around 1.5mn in the past few months. Financial Express

 

COMPANIES

SEC probing market debuts of Slack and other unicorns.

Under the Lens: The Securities and Exchanges Commission is reportedly probing the first-day listings of work-messaging company Slack and other unicorns on the New York Stock Exchange.

 

Regulators asked electronic-trading firms (on which these unicorns traded from) for messages such as emails sent just before the stocks opened for trading, as well as its policies for complying with NYSE rules.

 

It is still unknown who the investigation targets and what type of possible misconduct is being investigated. WSJ

 

In Other News: Even as Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services (IL&FS) went down under in September 2018, its erstwhile directors were earning large sums of money as remuneration, the company’s 2018-19 annual report shows. Read more here.

 

5G Spectrum Sale Date Announced, British MPs Back Boris Johnson's Brexit Plan, Colombia Bans Uber

 

RIDE-HAILING

After London and Germany, Colombia bans Uber.

Your Uber Has Disappeared: After London and Germany, now Colombia has admonished Uber. On Friday, the South American nation ordered the ride-hailing company to cease operations immediately after a judge ruled the company violated competition rules.

 

Uber has more than 2.3mn active users in Colombia and around 88,000 driver partners.

 

The lawsuit was filed by the Superintendency of Industry and Commerce (SIC). The SIC in a statement said Uber generated “a significant advantage in the market” by rendering transport services for individuals via its app.

 

Uber, meanwhile, said it rejected the ruling and immediately appealed it. Reuters

Ride-hailing firms join forces in California to fight new gig economy law.

Lyft Down: The ride-hailing backlash continues. A California law regulating the gig economy is set to go into effect in January. And Uber and Lyft have joined forces to rally against the law, lest they are forced to classify their drivers as employees and not as independent contractors as they do currently. The former classification would require the ride-hailing giants to provide relevant benefits, including the minimum wage and paid sick days.

 

Uber and Lyft insist that they are not transportation companies but a technology platform that link drivers and passengers together. The legal battle that will follow will involve courts, regulators, activists, unions, and a $100mn war chest that ride-hailing companies have amassed to exempt them from the law. Read more here.

 

GLOBAL

British MPs back Boris Johnson's plan to leave EU on 31 January 2020.

Bullish Boris: British MPs have backed Prime Minister Boris Johnson's plan to leave the EU on 31 January 2020. Voting 358-234, they voted in favour of the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill, which now goes on to further Parliamentary scrutiny.

 

The Bill would also ban an extension of the transition period - after the UK leaves the EU but before a comprehensive trade deal is reached - beyond 2020. Johnson argued that a deal could be reached by then, though critics said such a narrow time frame was unrealistic.

 

Johnson's Conservative Party now holds a comfortable 80-seat majority in the House of Commons following last week's general election. This could end years of deadlock over Brexit and give the British government more leeway over getting a deal with Brussels passed swiftly through Westminster. BBC

US government to support Bayer's appeal of Roundup cancer verdict.

Across the Atlantic: The US government is supporting Bayer AG's side in its appeal of the first federal jury verdict finding the company's Roundup weed killer causes cancer. More details here.

FIN.

How well do you know the top news of the last week? Have a go at our TheWeekThatWas Quiz and test your wits.