L&T’s Group Chairman, A.M. Naik, today addressed the shareholders of the conglomerate and said “It gives me great pleasure to inform you that the Board of Directors has recommended a final dividend of ₹18 per share for the year FY21. This is in addition to the ₹ 18 per share of special dividend declared earlier during the year.”
Mr. Naik dwelled further on the economy and said “Given the scale of India’s infrastructure deficit, we remain optimistic about the Government’s intent to complete the projects as envisaged in the National Infrastructure Pipeline”.
He added “The outlook for FY 2021-22 is one of cautious optimism, with the country’s GDP regaining positive territory thanks to the base effect in the first half, followed by robust growth in the second. We therefore believe the recovery is ‘delayed’ and not ‘derailed’.”
The full text of the speech of the L&T Group Chairman is given below for the benefit of the viewers of www.indianpsu.com –
I am addressing you all at a time when the nation has been impacted by the second wave of the Corona virus. Undoubtedly, this is the most severe test ever faced by all of us – households, corporates, civil society and the Government.
At this critical juncture, as important as observing health and safety measures is to remain psychologically strong, guard against cynical despair and stay united in our shared sense of purpose.
Your Company reiterates its commitment to serve the people of this country, and expresses solidarity with the nation and its leadership. L&T’s first priority has revolved around taking every possible care of its employees, contract workers and society at large. For our employees, we have initiated a broad spectrum of measures that encompass financial, medical and insurance assistance as well as educational support.
In addition, quarantine centres, have been set up for our employees, their families as well as contract workmen. We have continued to pay our contract workers their wages and provide food, shelter and medical assistance. All this was done while maintaining the prescribed Covid protocols.
In addition to a donation to the PM Cares Fund at the onset of the crisis, the L&T Group has also supplied test, medical and PPE kits to locations around the country. When the second wave threw up a shortage of oxygen, we responded by supplying oxygen generators to various hospitals. We also supplied oxygen concentrators, ventilators and ambulances.
Further, our construction business has converted many hospitals to Covid Care Centres. Our smart technologies in over 20 cities are helping state governments and local authorities contain the spread of the virus. These initiatives have been widely acknowledged by state governments.
Given the scale of India’s infrastructure deficit, we remain optimistic about the Government’s intent to complete the projects as envisaged in the National Infrastructure Pipeline. The project pipeline is expected to be collectively funded by the Central Government, international financial institutions, State Governments, PSUs and the private sector.
Since infrastructure investments serve the twin benefits of improving productivity and generating employment, we believe that the underlying macro drivers for investments in India remain intact. Your Company is poised to capitalize on these opportunities as they emerge.
Details of your Company’s performance have already been published in the Annual Report, which is available online, and I will therefore not go into them now.
The Company continues to focus on shareholder value creation by divesting non-core assets, capturing cost efficiencies and leveraging technology for productivity gains. The Company’s strategically diversified business portfolio, geographical dispersion, robust balance sheet and strong order book are reliable signposts to a brighter future.
It gives me great pleasure to inform you that the Board of Directors has recommended a final dividend of ₹18 per share for the year FY21. This is in addition to the ₹ 18 per share of special dividend declared earlier during the year.
The Company has gradually expanded its international footprint through geographic dispersion as a conscious de-risking strategy. While the Middle East region has remained an area of focus, the Company has turned its attention to many countries in Africa as well as South East Asia. Currently, the Middle East region constitutes 61% of the international order book of ₹ 68773 crore. In addition to this, our technology services businesses are growing in double digits through LTI, LTTS and Mindtree.
Our Group is over eight decades old and we have been at the forefront of many sustainability initiatives, long before they were mandated by law. In other words, we internalized the spirit behind ESG and were among the early companies who turned precepts into practice.
On our part, we are helping to provide better access to potable water, an improved level of sanitation, and facilities for health, education and skill building.
Turning to governance, our core values pivot around the principles based on transparency, accountability, responsibility compliance, ethics and trust. In recognition of our efforts, we received the ‘Grant Thornton Bharat SABERA’ award for Best Integrated Reporting.
The outlook for FY 2021-22 is one of cautious optimism, with the country’s GDP regaining positive territory thanks to the base effect in the first half, followed by robust growth in the second. We therefore believe the recovery is ‘delayed’ and not ‘derailed’.
I would like to thank Team L&T as well as our customers, vendors, governments and other stakeholders for the confidence and trust they have reposed in us. I also thank my fellow Board members for their invaluable support in guiding the Company and enabling another year of growth.
Let me end by conveying my greetings to you all as we embark on the 75th anniversary celebrations of India’s independence.
Mr AM Naik
Larsen & Toubro