Current Affairs 2017 June Part 2
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Disclaimer Note: These Current Affairs 2017 are presented to you in a unique anchored format. Anchored Current Affairs are linked to one another and sometimes open up one layer after the other, if necessary sometimes one news may open or branch out in dozens of other related important points until we reach the bottom of the pyramid.
Also, this current affairs material also might have little random sprinkles to prepare you as a well educated Officer (take Wednesday pronunciation example in second line of the blog) and to help you in answer writing skills. So read the entire material completely. Don't Skip.
The Current Affairs are prepared for Indian Students, Job Aspirants, Teachers or any one interested. Thus, focus on Indian Government and happenings in India are given the top most priority. (Do you know the meaning of "espirit de corps"? [pronounced is-pre-de-cor] - Loyalty towards a group by the group members. Usage - Lacking espirit de corps among political figures lead to horse trading.)
Also the notes are made keeping in mind the kind of questions asked in India's most prestigious and much hyped Civil Services Examination by Union Public Service Commission. So do not expect stuff like "Land of Morning Calm - South Korea". Only conceptually Important points are listed here. For simple GK one must buy a Rs.25 General Knowledge Book and mug it up. If more needed, mug the entire Lucent. We warn you - Quantity never matter, its all about Quality!
Current Affairs 2017 June Part 2:
- Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana - Urban to get supplementary Guidelines : Model will involve private builders entering into a partnership with the government to construct affordable housing.
In the Union Budget 2017 of the Government of India (one could write"in the union budget" only instead of "in the union budget of the government of India" but that would be educationally incorrect and would grant you negative marks in Mains Civil Services Exams and definitely in Interviews. So be Educationally correct) affordable housing has been granted the Infrastructure Status
List of Sectors with Infrastructure Status in addition to Affordable Housing are:
Infrastructure Status to Affordable Housing will ensure:
1. Easier access to institutional credit and help in reducing developers’ cost of borrowing for affordable projects. The National Housing Bank (NHB) will refinance individual housing loans of about Rs. 20,000 crore in 2017-18.
2. Infrastructure status will further simplify approval process for affordable projects, create clear guidelines and increase transparency in the segment.
3. Such a market, which will further be made accountable through the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA), could attract debt and pension funds to invest in the affordable housing segment.
4. The grant of infrastructure status would mean builders will be eligible for many government tax and subsidy incentives for low cost homes.
National Housing Bank : National Housing Bank, a wholly owned subsidiary of Reserve Bank of India, was set up on 9 July 1988 under the National Housing Bank Act, 1987. NHB is an apex financial institution for housing.
Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016: The Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 is an Act of the Parliament of India which seeks to protect home-buyers as well as help boost investments in the real estate industry. State-level Real Estate Regulatory Authorities (RERAs) regulate transactions related to both residential and commercial projects and ensure their timely completion and handover.
- Transparency Score of Banks declined in Survey of Banking Codes and Standard Board of India.
Related Important Term:
Basel III Accord: Basel III (or the Third Basel Accord) is a global, voluntary regulatory framework on bank capital adequacy, stress testing, and market liquidity risk. It was agreed upon by the members of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision in 2010–11. Its implementation is to be done before 31 March 2019.
There is a difference between Basel Accord and Basel Convention.
Basel Convention: Basel Convention, is an international treaty that was designed to reduce the movements of hazardous waste between nations, and specifically to prevent transfer of hazardous waste from developed to less developed countries (LDCs). It does not, however, address the movement of radioactive waste. Also called 'The Basel Convention on the Control of Trans-boundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal'.
The Union Cabinet of India approved the Financial Resolution & Deposit Insurance Bill, 2017.
Will pave the way to set up a Resolution Corporation to deal with bankruptcy in banks, insurance companies, pension funds, systematically important entities (discussed a little later) and other entities.
Will decrease the time and costs involved in resolving distressed financial entities.
Complements the Bankruptcy Code 2016 as it provides a resolution framework for the financialsector.
Will act as a Comprehensive Resolution Framework" for the economy.
Will lead to repeal or amendment of resolution-related provisions in Sectoral Acts as listed in Schedules of the Bill.
Will also result in repealing of the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation Act, 1961 to transfer the deposit insurance power and responsibilities to the Resolution Corporation.
Systematically Important Banks (SIBs): A systemically important financial institution (SIFI) is a bank, insurance company, or other financial institution whose failure might trigger a financial crisis. They are colloquially referred to as "too big to fail".
In India, current Domestic SIBs are State Bank of India and ICICI Bank.
Bankruptcy Code 2016: The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC) is the bankruptcy law of India which seeks to consolidate the existing framework by creating a single law for insolvency and bankruptcy. The Code seeks to repeal the Presidency Towns Insolvency Act, 19 Act, 1993 and Sick Industrial Companies (Special Provisions) Repeal Act, 2003, among others.
Insolvency Resolution : The Code outlines separate insolvency resolution processes for individuals, companies and partnership firms.The process may be initiated by either the debtor or the creditors. A maximum time limit, for completion of the insolvency resolution process,has been set for corporates and individuals. For companies, the process will have to be completed in 180 days, which may be extended by 90 days, if a majority of the creditors agree.
Insolvency regulator: The Code establishes the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India, to oversee the insolvency proceedings in the country and regulate the entities registered under it. The Board will have 10 members, including representatives from the Ministries of Finance and Law, and the Reserve Bank of India.
Insolvency professionals: The insolvency process will be managed by licensed professionals. These professionals will also control the assets of the debtor during the insolvency process.
Bankruptcy and Insolvency Adjudicator: The Code proposes two separate tribunals to oversee the process of insolvency resolution, for individuals and companies: (i) the National Company Law Tribunal for Companies and Limited Liability Partnership firms; and (ii) the Debt Recovery Tribunal for individuals and partnerships.
Read More about Bankruptcy Code from Gazette of India: Here
- Wholesale Price Index of May 2017 in India is at 5 months low.
Difference Between Wholesale Price Index and Consumer Price index: WPI index reflects average price changes of goods that are bought and sold in the wholesale market. WPI in India is published by the Office of Economic Adviser, Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
Primary articles included for the computation of WPI include food articles, non-food articles and minerals.
CPI is computed by executing a weighted average on a particular set of goods and services that are acquired by household for general consumption such as food, telecom, transportation, medical care amongst many others. The computation of CPI takes into account price changes and the actual inflation that affects the end consumer. CPI is thus a reflection of changes in the retail prices of specified goods and services over a time period which are traded by particular consumer group.
In easier terms:
WPI gauges Inflation in Wholesale Market
CPI gauges Inflation in Retail Market
- Till now Reserve Bank of India has initiated Prompt Corrective Action for six banks, bank of Maharashtra the latest one.
What is Prompt Corrective Action (PCA)?
PCA norms allow the regulator (RBI in India's case) to place certain restrictions such as halting branch expansion and stopping dividend payment. It can even cap a bank’s lending limit to one entity or sector. Other corrective action that can be imposed on banks include special audit, restructuring operations and activation of recovery plan. Banks’ promoters can be asked to bring in new management, too. The RBI can also supersede the bank’s board, under PCA.
The PCA is invoked when certain risk thresholds are breached. There are three risk thresholds which are based on certain levels of asset quality, profitability, capital and the like. The third such threshold, which is maximum tolerance limit, sets net NPA at over 12 per cent and negative return on assets for four consecutive years.
Rating agency ICRA has stated that 16 government owned banks out of 21 (excluding SBI associates) and two out of 16 private banks might come under the PCA framework.
ICRA: ICRA Limited is an Indian independent and professional investment information and credit rating agency. It was established in 1991, and was originally named Investment Information and Credit Rating Agency of India Limited.
- Remittance Inflows (A remittance is a transfer of money by a foreign worker to an individual in his or her home country.) topped by India $62.7 Billion in 2016 surpassing China.
tells the One Family at a time study by the UN International Fund for Agricultural Development.
Its headquarters is in Rome, Italy, and is a member of the United Nations Development Group.
UN International Fund for Agricultural Development: An international financial institution and a specialised agency of the United Nations dedicated to eradicating poverty and hunger in rural areas of developing countries. It was established as an international financial institution in 1977 as one of the major outcomes of the 1974 World Food Conference.
United Nations Development Group: The United Nations Development Group (UNDG) is a consortium of many United Nations agencies, created by then Secretary-General of the United Nations (Kofi Annan) in 1997 to improve the effectiveness of UN development activities at the country level.
Rome Declaration on World Food Security:The Rome Declaration on World Food Security is a document adopted at the 1996 World Food Summit taking place in Rome, Italy between 13 and 17 November 1996. The summit was organised by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). The Declaration reaffirms the right of everyone to have access to safe and nutritious food consistent with the right to adequate food and the fundamental right of everyone to be free from hunger and pledges political will and common and national commitment to achieving food security for all and to an ongoing effort to eradicate hunger in all countries.
Food and Agriculture Organization: The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations is an agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger. Setup in 1945. Headquarter in Rome, Italy
Key Note: Remember a lot of Food Security, Farmers and Agricultural Related Organisations' HQ is at Rome. Also Declaration on Food Security is Centred in Rome. (Rome=Food, Agriculture; if that is easy to remember)
- India's Current Account Deficit surges to $3.4 billion or 0.6% of the GDP in Q4 (Quarter-4) of 2016-17.
RBI says it is because of higher trade deficit brought about by a large increase in merchandise imports relative to exports.
What is Current Account Deficit?
Current account deficit is a measurement of a country's trade where the value of the goods and services it imports exceeds the value of the goods and services it exports.
Current account deficit occurs when a country spends more money on the goods and services it imports than it receives for the goods and services it exports. In other words, more money is leaving the country than flowing into it.
Trade Deficit: the amount by which the cost of a country's imports exceeds the value of its exports.
india ranked 60th (last year 66th) in Global Innovation Index 2017) out of 130 Nations - report byCornell University (American university), INSEAD (Business Schools) and the World Intellectual Property Organisation. Most Innovative Nations are Switzerland, Sweden,
the Netherlands (never miss "the" in "the Netherlands", its part of the country name), the US and UK
The World Intellectual Property Organization is one of the 17 specialized agencies of the United Nations. WIPO was created in 1967 "to encourage creative activity, to promote the protection of intellectual property throughout the world. HQ at Geneva, Switzerland. (Why many organisations HQ is in Switzerland? -Check our previous Current Affairs Post Here)
A Horse Walks into a Bar won Man Booker International Prize (given to other than English works). Written by Israeli author David Grossman, translated to English by Jessica Cohen. Last year won by Korean Novel THe Vegetarian by Han Kang.
The Prize is awarded by the Man Group which also gives Man Booker Prize for Fiction
- Financial Reform Bill law aims to identify troubling financial firms early on and through a Resolution Corporation, work on a quicker way of resolving it, either through a merger, sell off or winding it up.
The Resolution Corporation will cover all firms regulated by theRBI, SEBI, IRDA & PFRDA, will take swift action for winding up or dissolving a firm.
- 3 New Members of Asian Infrastructure Development Bank - Argentina, Madagascar and Tonga are the latest members of AIIB. Argentina and Madagascar are added under non regional category and Tonga under the regional category in the Second Annual Meeting of Governors
AIIB: The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is an multilateral development bank that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region. The bank currently has 59 member states. Headquarter at Beijing, China.
- Switzerland ratified Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information with India and 40 other jurisdictions on Introduction of the automatic Exchange of Information - a global Convention for Automatic information exchange on tax matters. First set will be exchange around 2019.
Bhadla Solar Park (Rajasthan) is on its way to become the largest solar park in India.
Maximum number of Solar Parks are in Madhya Pradesh - 5
Largest Electricity Production from Solar Parks comes from Rajasthan : 4505Mw (3 parks)
India's Solar Power Production - 12 Gw, China tops by producing 84.64Gw
- India ratified the UN TIR Convention (The Convention on International Transport of Goods Under Cover of TIR Carnets). India is the 71st Nation to ratify.
Will boost trade and regional integration across South Asia and beyond, fast tracking the region's potential to become a strategic hub.
TIR is the global standard for goods customs transmit, managed and developed by IRU - International Road Transport Union (the World Road Transport Organisation).
Location of both IRU and TIR - Geneva, Switzerland
- In News: MC-21 Russia's Mid Range Passenger Aircraft - an attempt by Russia at regaining the ground the country lost to the west in aerospace engineering over the past three decades.
Related Important Terms:
Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation (1944):The Convention on International Civil Aviation, also known as the Chicago Convention, established the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), a specialized agency of the UN charged with coordinating and regulating international air travel. The Convention establishes rules of airspace, aircraft registration and safety, and details the rights of the signatories in relation to air travel.
International Civil Aviation Organization (formation 1947): a specialized agency of the United Nations. It codifies the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth. Headquarter in Montreal, Canada.
Montreal Convention (1999): The Convention attempts to re-establish uniformity and predictability of rules relating to the international carriage of passengers, baggage and cargo. It amended important provisions of the Warsaw Convention's regime concerning compensation for the victims of air disasters.
Warsaw Convention (1929 signed, 1933 came to effect): is an international convention which regulates liability for international carriage of persons, luggage, or goods performed by aircraft for reward.
Tokyo Convention (1963): The Convention is applicable to offences against penal law and to any acts jeopardising the safety of persons or property on board civilian aircraft while in-flight and engaged in international air navigation.
- Replacing Gelatin based capsule by totally vegetarian capsules in being considered in India: Gelatin is obtained by boiling the connective tissues, bones and skin of animals.
Only two manufacturers market vegetarian Plant based capsules: Associated Capsules (indian firm), Capsugel (Us based firm)
- Only cities with full fledged metro in India: Delhi & Bengaluru (do not use Bangalore, official name of the city was changed to Bengaluru in 2014)
- 9th International Forum ATOMEXPO 2017 is being held on June 19th – 21st, 2017 in Moscow, at Exhibition Center “Gostiny Dvor”.
ATOMEXPO is the largest exhibition venue for meetings and negotiations between world leaders of the nuclear power sector.
The goal of the Forum is to promote international cooperation between the Russian Federation and the countries of Latin America, Pacific Asia, Africa, Central and Eastern Europe in the field of nuclear power, and to discuss Russia’s proposal on developing national energy programs.
Over the past seven years the Forum has become an internationally-recognized discussion venue that focuses on important issues of the nuclear power industry and shapes trends of its further development.
- Terms in News:
E-way Bill: GST e-way bill is an electronic bill which will be required for the movement of goods in case the value of the goods are above 50 thousand rupees. The bill can be generated from the GSTN portal and every registered taxpayer must require this e-way bill along with the goods transferred.There are various rules and regulations issued by the Central Board of Excise and Customs (nodal national agency responsible for administering Customs, Central Excise, Service Tax & Narcotics in India) for the handling of e-way bill. ReadMore Here
Anti-Profiteering Provision of GST (clause 171): The Indian government can now create a new “Authority” which will decide whether businesses have reduced their prices “enough” when there is a reduction in the GST rate of a particular good or service.
- India's First-ever Comprehensive Medical Devices manufacturing Park is set up in Sangareddy, Telangna
Quick GK : Nilgiri Tahr is the state animal of Tamil Nadu. It is an Ungulated mammal. In Endangered Category of IUCN Red List (more details about IUCN red list in Current Affairs 2017June Part -1)
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