SOUTH Korea's Hyundai group is teaming up with DCM Shriram to set up its first joint venture in India to manufacture marine freight containers. DCM Hyundai will be a 100 per cent export-oriented unit. The Delhi-based DMC group, which also manufactures textiles, computers and air-conditioners, will take 26 per cent of the equity and Hyundai 15 per cent. The remainder will be offered to mutual funds, financial institutions and the investing public. The project, to be located near Madras, is estimated to cost 700 milliom rupees (about HK$172.2 million), and is expected to commence operations in December. Hyundai Precision and Industry, the world's largest container manufacturing firm, is providing the technical knowhow. ''We expect that the company's sales turnover will exceed 720 million rupees in 1995-96 and 930 million rupees in 1996-97,'' said Bansi Dhar, chairman of DCM Hyundai. ''We are finalising plans to enter the capital market within the next two months, to raise 150 million rupees to part-finance the project.'' The company expects to sell containers to international leasing companies with the help of the Hyundai group. The company will have locational advantage, since Madras port, which caters to the developing export regions in southern India, has a deficit of empty containers. Madras port imported 32,000 empty containers in 1993-94, and such imports are expected to increase during the current financial year. Meanwhile, the director general of shipping has further relaxed the cabotage regulations, allowing foreign companies to operate feeder services between Bombay port and the neighbouring Jawaharlal Nehru port, better known as Nhava Sheva. Until now, only Indian companies were permitted to operate such a feeder service between two Indian ports, although foreign companies were allowed to do transshipment of cargo from any port in India. The decision to allow transshipment of cargo between Bombay and Nhava Sheva was taken after a meeting that the director general had with representatives of shipowners, steamer agents and chairmen of both port trusts in Bombay last week. The shipping agents representing foreign shipping lines have been pleading for relaxation in cabotage regulations, and for permisson to operate feeder services all along the Indian coastline. However, the director general has thus far relaxed the restriction only in the case of Bombay and Nhava Sheva ports. In a related development, the Shipping Credit and Investment Company of India (SCICI), the major institutional lender to the shipping sector, has decided to offer a longer period of moratorium on its borrowers. This is in response to a request to that effect from the National Shipping Board. During the course of the latter's recent meeting in Goa, ship-owners had also asked for easier lending norms for SCICI credit, since international lenders provided more flexible terms.