India’s Supreme Court rejects Vodafone’s $629m appeal for tax refund

Vodafone Idea was granted a smaller refund, amounting to around 15 per cent of the amount it requested
Vodafone Idea, India, Supreme Court, Finance, Telecoms

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India’s Supreme Court has dealt another hammer blow to Vodafone Idea, rejecting the beleaguered telco’s request for a $629 million (4,760 crore rupee) tax refund.

Instead, the two man panel allowed refund of just $96 million (730 crore rupees) and closed the matter.

The ruling is another significant blow to the finances of the struggling telco’s finances, following a Supreme Court ruling last October that forced telcos to revise the way they calculate their adjusted growth revenues – a crucial metric used by the Department of Telecoms to calculate dues and charges regarding spectrum usage.  The Supreme Court’s AGR ruling saddled the industry with tens of billions of dollars of debt, of which Vodafone Idea was responsible for around $7.2 billion.

Vodafone Idea has repeatedly called on the Indian government to devise a financial aid package, including allowing it to repay its debts over a 20 year period. However, the government has so far largely rejected these pleas.

Last week, Vodafone Group infused an extra $200 million into its Indian joint venture. To enable the company to remain solvent.

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