''A MECHANISM THAT EXPECTS NPAs TO FIND THEIR OWN SOLUTIONS IS USELESS

Business Today|August 09, 2020

''A MECHANISM THAT EXPECTS NPAs TO FIND THEIR OWN SOLUTIONS IS USELESS
India Inc. and its lenders are in a legal crisis. Pre-empting a financial meltdown due to the Covid-19 lockdown, the Centre has suspended the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code for a year. In parallel, the Reserve Bank of India has offered moratorium on loan repayments. In the absence of debt resolution mechanisms, the burden has shifted back on banks. Business Today’s Nevin John speaks to Shardul Shroff, Executive Chairman, Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas and Co, on the legal tangle and what this means for businesses and banks. Edited excerpts:
Nevin John

What are the legal implications of suspending IBC?

The implications of suspending the corporate insolvency resolution (CIR) process indicates lack of capacity of tribunals, inability to deal with lack of market demand for stressed assets in the CIR process, and ban on existing promoters remedying the default. It also indicates excessive litigation slowing down the resolution process. In the absence of a white knight or a third-party promoter stepping in to take over, the ban on existing promoters continuing with the company is deeply problematic. There is a moral dilemma. The expectation that lenders and promoters of companies, which are stressed assets / NPAs for banks, resolving matters without the imperative to find a solution in a time-bound solution, are difficult to handle. A mechanism which expects NPA companies/stressed assets will find their own solution with lenders is totally useless.

You represent various stakeholders. So what does it mean for lenders, defaulters, and government?

Lenders would be stressed since they cannot rely upon defaults in the interim (from March 25, 2020) by borrower companies to seek resolution of bankruptcy of such firms that are in insolvent circumstances. It would open the need for lenders standing outside, winding up and proceeding to enforce security, not as a mere asset sale or a piecemeal sale, but as a sale on a going concern basis with management rights, and which promote creation of adequate cash flows to repay lenders. The suspension of default interest and penal interest together with non-payment of regular interest and the right to recovery will lead to bank balance sheets shrinking and create the need to capitalise banks.

articleRead

You can read up to 3 premium stories before you subscribe to Magzter GOLD

Log in, if you are already a subscriber

GoldLogo

Get unlimited access to thousands of curated premium stories and 5,000+ magazines

READ THE ENTIRE ISSUE

August 09, 2020