sebi: Sebi opposes CCI move to probe rating agencies

Mumbai: India’s capital market regulator and competitors watchdog are at loggerheads over the jurisdiction of credit score rating agencies.

The Securities and Alternate Board of India (Sebi) has requested the Competitors Fee of India (CCI) not to entertain a criticism by scores company Brickworks, which moved the CCI alleging predatory pricing by its friends.

CCI rejected Sebi’s rivalry on the grounds that it’s nicely inside its powers to examine anti-trust practices.“Sebi acknowledged that for any alleged violation of those rules (CRA Laws), Sebi is the regulatory authority to study the allegations and take acceptable motion, if any, required. Subsequently, as per Sebi, the current info will not be entertained by the Fee,” stated CCI in an order dated December 29.

Sebi is opposed to CCI’s interpretation that it may examine the enterprise practices of rating agencies. CCI, nevertheless, brushed apart the market regulator’s argument saying simply because there’s a sectoral regulator doesn’t imply CCI can have no jurisdiction over such entities.

Rating agencies CRISIL, India Rankings and Analysis, CARE and ICRA, which have been respondents within the case, raised objections over CCI wanting into the matter and argued Sebi was their regulator.

CCI, nevertheless, went forward with its investigation. It quoted a 2019 Supreme Court docket order within the matter of Bharti Airtel and stated: “that mere presence of a sectoral regulator doesn’t oust the jurisdiction of the Fee”.

“The Fee notes that although regulation of CRAs would be the subject-matter area of Sebi, inspecting any anti-competitive conduct on a part of CRAs falls throughout the jurisdiction of the Fee,” CCI stated.

Brickworks had alleged that the larger rating agencies have been quoting very low costs for scores to numerous PSUs and smaller rating agencies weren’t ready to get the contracts. It cited a Rs 75,000-crore bond issuance by Nationwide Freeway Authority of India (NHAI) the place CRISIL, CARE and India Rankings Analysis quoted a rating payment of solely Rs 1,100. Brickworks, then again, had quoted a payment of Rs 9,99,000. CCI dominated that the allegations made by Brickworks didn’t have ample proof to show any cartelisation.

The competitors regulator had requested Sebi to present info on whether or not any motion is in progress on the matter. Sebi didn’t disclose the data to CCI. “The Fee thus is of the opinion that it has the jurisdiction to proceed and determine the current allegations on deserves,” CCI added.

Authorized consultants stated Sebi normally doesn’t affirm nor deny the existence of any investigation. That is to be certain that the entities underneath probe don’t catch wind of Sebi’s probe.

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