Comprehensive News Analysis – 17 January 2017

Table of Contents:

A. GS1 Related:
B. GS2 Related:

1. Warships sold, not gifted to Pakistan, says China

C. GS3 Related:

1. GST stalemate resolved, rollout deferred to July 1

2. Parrikar wants private players to tap DRDO’s knowledge

3. Demonetisation has hit India’s growth: IMF

D. GS4 Related:
E. Important Editorials : A Quick Glance

The Hindu

1. Vagaries of the job market

Business Line

1. Paradigm shift

Indian Express

1. Visa power

PIB

1. India & Mauritius Sign MoU for Cooperation in the field of Cooperatives

2. India Evolving as a Global Hub in Defence Manufacturing

F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
G. BILLS/ACTS/SCHEMES/ORGS IN NEWS
H. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
I. Archives

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Useful News Articles

A. GS1 Related
B. GS2 Related
  1. Warships sold, not gifted to Pakistan, says China

Category: International Relations

Topic: India and its Neighbourhood- Relations

Key Points:

  • Pakistani media reports on 16th January, 2017 said that China has handed over two ships to Pakistan Navy on Saturday to safeguard the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
  • China on the same day had clarified that it had not “donated” two warships to Pakistan, but that the transfer of vessels, apparently for the defence of Gwadar port, was part of a legitimate “military trade” between the two countries.

 

C. GS3 Related
1. GST stalemate resolved, rollout deferred to July 1

Category: Indian Economy  

Topic: Taxation  

Key Points:

  • In a landmark development, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council arrived at a consensus on contentious issues such as administrative control over tax payers in the new indirect tax regime on 16th January, 2017, thus paving the way for GST to be introduced this year, although three months after the Centre’s original rollout deadline of April 1, 2017.
  • Another area of contention between the Centre and the States was the issue of who would get to collect tax on the economic activities taking place in Indian territorial waters. This issue has also been smoothened out, Mr. Jaitley said.
  • The Finance Minister said that while the power to levy and collect the Interstate GST (IGST) will lie with the Central government, a special provision would cross-empower the States in the same ratio agreed upon for tax assessees.
  • The Council will now meet on February 18 and approve the legislations that need to be cleared by Parliament and it is expected that those would be passed and ratified during the Budget session.
  • As per the formula for dual control of assessees, 90 per cent of those with a GST turnover of Rs. 1.5 crore or less will be assessed for the purposes of scrutiny and audit by the States, and 10 per cent by the administrative machinery of the Centre.

 

2. Parrikar wants private players to tap DRDO’s knowledge

Category: Science and Technology

Topic: Developments

Key Points:

  • Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on 16th January, 2017 said that there is a lot of knowledge and infrastructure base with the DRDO and that it needs to be tapped by the medium and small-scale firms and private industries, which in turn will lead towards the establishment of a self-reliant defence industrial complex.
  • He went on to point out that industries have been significantly contributing in the realisation of various defence products with the know-how provided by the DRDO.
  • The partnership between DRDO and industries is transforming the country into a global defence manufacturing hub and the synergy has provided thrust for exporting defence products.

 

3. Demonetisation has hit India’s growth: IMF

Category: Indian Economy  

Topic: Government Policy

Key Points:

  • It has been recently observed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that the government’s demonetisation move could dampen India’s growth by one percentage point in the current fiscal year and 0.4 percentage point next year, compared to its earlier projections.
  • The IMF now expects India to record a growth of 6.6 percent for the current year, and 7.2 percent next year. Earlier, IMF had projected 7.6 percent this year and next year.
  • According to the IMF World Economic Outlook (WEO) update released on 16th January, 2017, there is a marginal upward shift in prospects for the U.S and China until 2018, but India, Brazil, and Mexico are among the large economies that have their projections revised downwards. 

 

D. GS4 Related
E. Important Editorials: A Quick Glance
The Hindu
1. Vagaries of the job market

Category: Indian Economy  

Topic: Labour

Key Points:

  • Across the world, there has been a growing concern regarding the mismatch between the number of people who annually reach working age and the availability of jobs.
  • The concern has been in existence globally during the better part of the period since the global financial crisis of the last decade.
  • In fact, it is important to note the International Labour Organisation’s latest forecastthat a few more millions are set to join the pool of the jobless during this year and the next.
  • There also appears to be the challenge of reducing the extent of vulnerability that currently affects about 42 per cent of the total working population.  
  • This concern refers to the lack of access to contributory social protection schemes among the self-employed and allied categories, unlike their counterparts in the wage-earning and salaried classes. 
  • In conclusion, the challenge for policymakers worldwide is to ensure that incomes do not fall below the levels of basic subsistence as the world marches towards the poverty reduction targets under the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

 

Business Line

1. Paradigm shift

Category: International Relations  

Topic: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests

Key Points:

  • In last week’s press conference of US President-elect Donald Trump, Trump came across as aggressive, in stark contrast to Barack Obama.
  • Barack Obama, in his farewell speech, yet again tried to warn the country against divisive currents.
  • The international community, the EU in particular, is apprehensive about Donald Trump.
  • Trump has also provoked China by saying that the ‘one-China policy’ was up for negotiation.
  • In the U.S., Trump is keen to ramp up protectionism.
  • It is believed that Trump’s ascendancy will lead to a squeeze on H1-B visas.

 

Indian Express

1. Visa power

Category: International Relations

Topic: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests

Key Points:

  • Recently, Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, tweeted a warning to online retail giant Amazon for doormats being sold on its Canada portal depicting the Indian flag.
  • In response, Amazon pulled down the products under question and expressed regret.
  • Later, Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Dastook it on himself to ask the e-commerce company to “behave” and “desist from being flippant about Indian symbols and icons”.
  • In later tweets, Das “clarified” that his comments were made as a “citizen of India”, but the damage had been done.


Suggested Alternative

  • It has been suggested that if the government wanted to register its objection, it could have done so, at the appropriate level, without spectacle.

 

PIB

1. India & Mauritius Sign MoU for Cooperation in the field of Cooperatives

Category: International Relations

Topic: Bilateral Relations

Key Points:

  • The Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Shri Radha Mohan Singh and Minister of Business, Enterprise and Cooperatives, Govt. of Mauritius, Shri Soomilduth Bholah signed on MoU for Cooperation in the field of Cooperatives & related areas on 16th January, 2017.
  • The MoU will enable the two countries to collaborate in this vital sector and can significantly benefit thousands of Mauritians.
  • India offered to exchange its expertise and technology with Mauritius in agro industry, fisheries and dairy sector.
  • The two ministers expressed satisfaction at the historic, time-tested relationship between India and Mauritius which is anchored in linkages of culture and ancestry has grown from strength to strength over the years, adding that frequent high level visits have added significant momentum to the bilateral relationship between the two countries. 

 

2. India Evolving as a Global Hub in Defence Manufacturing

Category: Indian Economy

Topic: Manufacturing

Key Points:

  • Defence Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar visited DRDO’s Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Missile Complex during his visit to Hyderabad on 16th January, 2017. He visited the integration centre at Research Centre Imarat (RCI) and reviewed ongoing missile technologies and related Programmes. Dr S. Christopher, Secretary, DD&D and Chairman DRDO alongwith Dr G. Satheesh Reddy, SA to RM and Director General, Missiles and Strategic Systems briefed the Defence Minister on various technological developments.
  • Shri Parrikar congratulated all DRDO scientists for the recent successful missions including Smart Anti Airfield Weapon, Long Range Ballistic Missiles Agni V& Agni IV, Guided Pinaka and Astra. He complimented the Missile Complex for indigenizing various technology products and strengthening the defence industrial base in the country.
  • The Defence Minister said, “There is lot of knowledge and infrastructure base with the DRDO and the same needs to be tapped by the MSME and private industries, which in turn will lead towards the establishment of a self-reliant defence industrial ecosystem in our country. Today, the industries are significantly contributing in the realization of various defence products with the know-how provided by the DRDO and few of them have even graduated as lead integrators. The partnership between the DRDO and industries is transforming our country into a global defence manufacturing hub. This synergy has provided the much needed thrust for exporting our defence products globally. We are taking necessary initiatives in this direction and I am sure that our state-of-the-art Missiles and Weapon systems will garner the much needed interest in the global markets and generate foreign exchange.”
  • Shri Parrikar added, “I admire the initiatives taken by the DRDO in signing MoUs with various Universities in diversified research areas and these initiatives need to be further strengthened by frequent interactions for realization of futuristic technological products.”
F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
  • World Economic Outlook (WEO)
  • International Labour Organisation
H. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
Question 1: The ‘World Economic Outlook (WEO)’  is released by which of the following organizations?

A) International Labour Organisation (ILO) B) World Bank C) International Monetary Fund (IMF) D) WTO

Question 2: Consider the following statements,
  1. The Agni-IV, the Long Range Surface to Surface Ballistic Missile.
  2. It has a range of 4,000 km.

Which of the above statements is/are correct? A) 1 Only B) Both 1 and 2 C) 2 Only D) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 3: Consider the following statements,
  1. Agni-5 is a Long Range Surface-to-Surface Ballistic Missile
  2. Agni-V is designed and developed by the National Aerospace Laboratories

Which of the above statements is/are correct? A) 1 Only B) Both 1 and 2 C) 2 Only D) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 4: Consider the following statements,
  1. Coral reefs are diverse underwater ecosystems held together by calcium carbonate structures secreted by corals.
  2. Fringing reefs grow near the coastline around islands and continents.

Which of the above statements is/are correct? A) 1 Only B) Both 1 and 2 C) 2 Only D) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 5: Consider the following statements,
  1. An atoll is an island formed by a ring-shaped coral reef encircling a lagoon.
  2. The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef.

Which of the above statements is/are correct? A) 1 Only B) Both 1 and 2 C) 2 Only D) Neither 1 nor 2

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