Daily Current Affairs and MCQs for UPSC - July 03, 2020 (The Hindu, Economic Times, PIB)

FDI up by $19 bn in FY20; portfolio investment down by $13.7 bn: RBI

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.


Context

  • Direct investment into the country rose by $19 billion while portfolio investment declined by $13.7 billion during 2019-20, according to the data on the International Investment Position (IIP) released by the Reserve Bank.
  • International financial assets of Indian residents increased by $73.9 billion due to the rise in reserve assets and overseas direct investment by $64.9 billion and $13.0 billion, respectively, though other investments declined marginally during the year, the RBI said in a release.

About the Background

  • Overall, net claims of non-residents on India declined by $57.6 billion during the year.
  • RBI said that despite a fall of $13.7 billion in portfolio investment during the year, international financial liabilities increased by $16.3 billion as direct investment and other investments rose by $19.0 billion and US 11.0 billion, respectively.

About the Highlights

  • The RBI further said that the ratio of overseas financial assets to India's GDP in 2019-20 (at current market prices) moved up to 26.5 per cent in March 2020 (23.4 per cent a year ago), while the ratio of total claims of non-residents to GDP increased to 40.5 per cent in March 2020 (39.3 per cent a year ago).
  • The ratio of net IIP to GDP improved to (-)14.0 per cent as at end-March 2020 [(-)15.9 per cent].
  • As regards the variation during the January-March 2019-20 quarter, the RBI said that net claims of non-residents on India lowered by $45.8 billion to $379.3 billion in March 2020.
  • The decline in net foreign owned assets in India, it said, was due to a reduction of US 28.1 billion in the non-residents' assets combined with an increase of $17.7 billion in Indian residents' foreign assets.
  • Overseas assets of Indian residents' rose mainly due to a surge of $17.9 billion in reserve assets, supported by an increase in overseas direct investments even as other investments declined marginally during the quarter.
  • The fall in foreign-owned assets was largely due to decline in portfolio and direct investments in India by $20.1 billion and $8.7 billion, respectively, even as loans availed by residents mainly as external commercial borrowings (ECBs) increased during the quarter; depreciation of the Indian rupee against the US dollar contributed to the decline in foreign-owned assets in India, when valued in US dollar terms, the RBI said.
  • Reserve assets accounted for around two-thirds of total foreign assets, while the share of debt liabilities in total liabilities increased during the quarter.
  • The ratio of India's international financial assets to international financial liabilities improved significantly to 65.4 per cent at end-March 2020 (62.1 per cent a quarter ago; 59.5 per cent a year ago), the RBI said.

Source: Business Standard.

PM Formalization Of Micro Food Processing Enterprises Scheme To Generate Total Investment Of Rs 35000 Crore

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.


Context

  • Minister for Food Processing Industries Harsimrat Kaur Badal launched the PM Formalization of Micro Food Processing Enterprises (PM FME) scheme on 29th June 2020 as a part of "Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan".
  • Union Minister said that the Scheme would generate total investment of Rs 35,000 crore and generate 9 lakh skilled and semi-skilled employment and benefit 8 lakh units through access to information, training, better exposure and formalization.

About the Background

  • Highlighting the role of local food processing units, Union Minister said that food products manufactured by the rural entrepreneurs in the villages have a long tradition of supplying Indian food products to the local population.
  • The importance of these local units and their role has been amply emphasised by the Hon'ble Prime Minister in his Address to the Nation on 12.5.2020.

About the Scheme

  • Union FPI Minister said that the unorganized food processing sector comprising nearly 25 lakh units contribute to 74% of employment in food processing sector.
  • The expenditure under the scheme would to be shared in 60:40 ratio between Central and State Governments, in 90:10 ratio with North Eastern and Himalayan States, 60:40 ratio with UTs with legislature and 100% by Centre for other UTs.
  • The Scheme adopts One District One Product (ODODP) approach to reap benefit of scale in terms of procurement of inputs, availing common services and marketing of products.
  • Existing Individual micro food processing units desirous of upgradation of their unit can avail credit-linked capital subsidy @35% of the eligible project cost with a maximum ceiling of Rs.10 lakh per unit. Seed capital @ Rs. 40,000/- per SHG member would be provided for working capital and purchase of small tools.

About the Highlights

  • FPOs/ SHGs/ producer cooperatives would be provided credit linked grant of 35% for capital investment along the value chain. Support would be provided through credit linked grant @ 35% for development of common infrastructure.
  • Support for marketing & branding would be provided to develop brands for micro units and groups with 50% grant at State or regional level which could benefit large number of micro units in clusters.

Source: Business Standard.

Get Started with UPSC Preparation

Current Affairs

Detailed Analysis

IAS Counselling

by Subject Experts

Free Material

for UPSC Preparation

Extension of Operation Greens from TOP (Tomato-Onion-Potato) crops to all Perishable Fruits & Vegetables (TOP to Total)

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.


Context

  • Operation Greens Scheme, being implemented by MoFPI has been extended from tomato, onion and potato (TOP) crops to other notified horticulture crops for providing subsidy for their transportation and storage from surplus production area to major consumption centres.  
  • The objective of intervention is to protect the growers of fruits and vegetables from making distress sale due to lockdown and reduce the post -harvest losses.

About the scheme

  • Eligible Crops:
    • Fruits- Mango, Banana, Guava, Kiwi, Lichi, Papaya, Citrus, Pineapple, Pomegranate, Jackfruit; Vegetables: - French beans, Bitter Gourd, Brinjal, Capsicum, Carrot, Cauliflower, Chillies (Green), Okra, Onion, Potato and Tomato.
    • Any other fruit/vegetable can be added in future on the basis of recommendation by Ministry of Agriculture or State Government
  • Duration of Scheme: – for the period of six months from the date of notification i.e., 11/06/2020.
  • Eligible entities: - Food Processors, FPO/FPC, Co-operative Societies, Individual farmers, Licensed Commission Agent, Exporters, State Marketing/Co-operative Federation, Retailers etc. engaged in processing/ marketing of fruits and vegetables.
  • Pattern of Assistance: - Ministry will provide subsidy @ 50 % of the cost of the following two components, subject to the cost norms:
  • Transportation of eligible crops from surplus production cluster to consumption centre; and/or
  • Hiring of appropriate storage facilities for eligible crops (for maximum period of 3 months);
  • Submission of claim for subsidy – Eligible entities, who comply with the aforesaid essential criteria may undertake the transportation and/or storage of notified crops from notified surplus production cluster, without any prior approval from MoFPI and thereafter submit their claim on online portal https://www.sampada-mofpi.gov.in/Login.aspx.
  • The applicant should register on the portal before carrying out transportation/storage of fruits and vegetables.

About the Highlights

  • Smt Harsimrat Kaur Badal, informed that MoFPI is planning to start free on-line skilling classes for SC and ST entrepreneurs, in collaboration with NIFTEM and FICSI, for providing e-learning.
  • MoFPI has identified 41 courses and job roles like on baking, makingjam, pickles, etc for which access to digital content would be made available.
  • Once certified, these entrepreneurs would have better employment potential, or they can start their own venture.
  • She further informed that the participant handbooks and the facilitator's guide created by the Ministry, through NIFTEM, will be converted into e-learning format with suitable digital content and online assessment service.
  • These will be made available in English, Hindi and other regional languages by FICSI on web and on android based app on mobiles.

Source: PIB.

Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.


Context

  • In a major announcement, Prime Minister Narendra Modi extended the Pradhanmantri Garib Kalyan Yojana till November 2020.
  • Under this scheme, over 80 crore people will get five kg of wheat or five kg of rice per month.

About the Background

  • In an address to the nation, PM Modi said that every family will also get one kg chana every month until November 2020.
  • The entire cost of this initiative will cost over Rs 90,000 crore.
  • PM Modi made a 16-minute-long speech.
  • This was his sixth address to India since the coronavirus outbreak in the country.

About the Highlights

  • He asserted that under the PM Garib Kalyan Yojana, the Centre announced a package of Rs. 1.75 lakh crore.
  • "In the last 3 months, Rs 31,000 crore were deposited in bank accounts of 20 crore poor families. Also, Rs 18,000 crore were deposited in bank accounts of more than 9 crore farmers."
  • PM Modi also thanked the farmers and honest taxpayers saying "they are behind this mega scheme to provide foodgrain free to every poor in the country. I bow before the farmers and honest taxpayers".
  • He highlighted that people of the country began showing carelessness and negligence ever since the government announced the relaxation in the first phase, after over two-month of coronavirus COVID-19 lockdown.
  • The Prime Minister urged the countrymen to keep following social distancing while maintaining extra caution during Monsoon season, during which symptoms of cold, cough and fever see a rise.
  • Continuing in the same vein, PM Narendra Modi has said that in recent there has been negligence as far as following health and hygiene protocols is concerned.
  • The level of alertness seen during the earlier phases of the lockdown has been missing in recent days, PM Modi said.
  • "Timely lockdown, other decisions saved many lives, but since Unlock one has begun, people have shown negligence," PM Modi said.
  • The state governments, local administration and citizens need to show similar caution as the country is set to enter into Unlock 2 zone. 
Source: NDTV.

India Bangladesh form LPG joint venture

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.


Context

  • India and Bangladesh today signed an agreement for the formation of a 50:50 Joint Venture Company (JVC) for LPG business in Bangladesh.
  • The agreement was signed between the  IOC Middle East FZE, Dubai, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) and RR Holdings Ltd., Ras Al Khaimah, UAE, the holding company of Beximco LPG of Bangladesh.

About the Venture

  • The new Joint venture company set up today takes further the ‘neighbourhood first’ policy of the government of India.
  • The energy cooperation between India and Bangladesh has made big strides in the recent times.
  • The new Joint venture is another step in the same direction.
  • The Joint Venture Company will help reduce the cost of imprt of LPG and make it more affordable for the consumers in Bangladesh.
  • The LPG market in Bangladesh is fast expanding and the new project will draw upon the strengths of the Indian oil and Beximco in their respective areas.
  • The company plans to diversify into LPG export to the north eastern states of India from Bangladesh which will prove to be a win win situation for both the countries.

Source: AIR News.

IIT-Madras launches online diploma, BSc in programming and data science, admission without JEE

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources, issues relating to poverty and hunger.


Context

  • The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras — the best Indian institute in India, as per the NIRF ranking — has launched an online diploma and BSc programme in data science and programming.
  • The course will be imparted online while its assessment including the exams will be done in an offline mode.
  • The course has no age limit and students who have passed class 12 can also take it up.
About the Background
  • Through these courses, the institute aims to reach a larger number of students.
  • The course comes with multiple entries and exit points.
  • Students can get a certificate, diploma, and degree based on when they exit the course.
  • After completing class 12, students will have to pursue a foundation course while those who have a college-level degree can directly enroll at the diploma level.
  • Students can exit with a certificate after completing a foundation-level course and after a year, one can get a diploma, and on completing three years, a degree will be awarded. The course is divided into six semesters.
About the Course
  • The course curriculum, claims the IIT, is designed with help from the industry.
  • The first-year students will learn the basics of programming and data science.
  • While in the diploma year skill courses, and application of these courses will be taught and in the final stage students will learn about specialisations.
  • By the end of the three years, a BSc degree will be offered.
  • The program will have videos from the faculty, weekly assignments, and in-person invigilated exams. Based on eligibility, interested candidates will have to fill a form and pay a fee of Rs 3,000 for the qualifier exam.
  • Learners will get access to the four weeks of the course content of four subjects (mathematics, English, statistics, and computational thinking).
  • These students will go through the course lectures online, submit online assignments, and write an in-person qualifier exam at the end of four weeks.
  • In this programme all students who clear the test with an overall score of 50 per cent will be eligible to register for the foundational program.
  • Those who get minimum required scores in weekly assignments in the four weeks will get to write the qualifier exam.
  • Those who get minimum required scores in the qualifier exam get to register for the foundational level courses, as per the rules.

Source: Indian Express.

***********************************************************

Test your Knowledge

  1. Consider the following statements:
  1. National Doctors Day is observed as a tribute to Bidhan Chandra Roy.
  2. He served as the Chief Minister of West Bengal from 1948 until his death in 1962.
  3. He believed that swaraj would remain a dream unless the people were healthy and strong in mind and body.

Select the correct answer using the codes given below:

     A. 1 and 2 only
     B. 2 and 3 only
     C. 1 and 3 only
     D. AOTA

Solution: D

  1. National Chartered Accountant Day in India is observed to celebrate the formation of:

       A. Attorney General and Solicitor of India
       B. National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission
       C. National Human Rights Commission
       D. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India

Solution: D

  •  Follow

0 Comments
Post your Comment! Note: Your Email address will not be disclosed.








Options

Do you want to become an IAS officer like Saumya Sharma?
Study Online at  Neostencil Logo

Your Exam segments is being saved. Please wait....

Select Exam(s) you are interested in

IAS IES/GATE IIT-JEE NEET STATE PSC CSIR UGC NET OTHERS
please enter valid OTP