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Revision of ethanol price
- The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has given its approval for the following, including fixing higher ethanol price derived from different raw materials under the EBP Programme.
Ethanol Blended Petrol Programme (EBP Programme )
- Ethanol is an agro-based product, mainly produced from a by-product of the sugar industry, namely molasses. In years of surplus production of sugarcane, when prices are depressed, the sugar industry is unable to make timely payment of cane price to farmers.
- The Ethanol Blending Programme (EBP) seeks to achieve a blending of Ethanol with motor spirit with a view to reducing pollution, conserve foreign exchange and increase value addition in the sugar industry enabling them to clear cane price arrears of farmers.
- The Central Government has scaled up blending targets from 5% to 10% under the Ethanol Blending Programme (EBP).
- This programme has been extended to the whole of India except Union Territories of Andaman Nicobar and Lakshadweep islands with effect from April 2019 to promote the use of alternative and environment-friendly fuels.
- This intervention also seeks to reduce import dependence for energy requirements and give a boost to the agriculture sector.
- The procedure of procurement of ethanol under the EBP has been simplified to streamline the entire ethanol supply chain and remunerative ex-depot price of ethanol has been fixed.
- To facilitate achieving of new blending targets, a “grid” which networks distilleries to OMC depots and details quantities to be supplied has been worked out. State-wise demand profile has also been projected, keeping in view distances, capacities and other sectoral demands.
- The results have been quite encouraging, with supplies doubling every year.
Exercise Yudh Abhyas 2019
- As part of the ongoing Indo-US defence cooperation, a joint military training, Exercise Yudh Abhyas – 2019 is being conducted at Joint Base Lewis Mc Chord, Washington, USA.
About Yudh Abhyas 2019
- Exercise Yudh Abhyas will provide an opportunity to the armed forces of both countries to train in an integrated manner at Battalion level with joint planning at Brigade level.
- Multiple scenarios will be rehearsed during the joint exercise with a view to understanding each other’s organisational structure and battle procedures.
- This would result in a higher degree of joint manship that would further facilitate interoperability between the armed forces of both countries to meet any unforeseen contingency across the globe.
- The exercise is also an ideal platform to learn from each other’s expertise and experiences of planning and execution of operations.
- Both armies will jointly train, plan and execute a series of well-developed operations for neutralization of threats of varied nature.
- ln, the end of a joint exercise will be undertaken by both countries in an operational setting under a UN mandate. Experts from both sides will hold expert academic and military discussions to share each other’s experiences on varied topics for mutual benefit.
Induction of AH-64E Apache Attack Helicopter
The IAF (Indian Air Force) formally inducted the AH-64E Apache Attack Helicopter into its inventory at Air Force Station Pathankot.
About AH-64E Apache Attack Helicopter
- Apaches have been an integral part of numerous historic campaigns worldwide. These aircraft have been modified specifically to suit the exacting standards demanded by IAF.
- IAF has signed a contract with ‘The Boeing Company’ and US Government for 22 Apache Attack Helicopters. The first eight helicopters have been delivered on schedule and the last batch of helicopters is to be delivered by March 2020.
- The helicopter is capable of delivering a variety of weapons which include air to ground Hellfire missiles, 70 mm Hydra rockets and air to air Stinger missiles.
- Apache also carries one 30 mm chain gun with 1200 rounds as part of area weapon subsystem.
- To add to the lethality of the helicopter, it carries fire control radar, which has a 360° coverage and nose-mounted sensor suite for target acquisition and night vision systems.
Significance of the induction
- Apache attack helicopters are being purchased to replace the Mi-35 fleet.
- The addition of Apache Attack Helicopter is a significant step towards modernisation of Indian Air Force helicopter fleet.
- This procurement will enhance the capability of IAF in providing integrated combat aviation cover to the army strike corps.
- These tandem seating helicopters are day/night, all-weather capable and have high agility and survivability against battle damage. These are easily maintainable even in field conditions and are capable of prolonged operations in tropical and desert regions.
India announces contribution of 22 mn USD to GFTAM
- India has announced a contribution of 22 million US Dollars to the Global Fund for AIDS, TB and Malaria (GFTAM) for the 6th replenishment cycle, an increase of 10% over the amount contributed by us in the 5th cycle.
About Global Fund
- The Global Fund is a partnership designed to accelerate the end of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as epidemics.
- As an international organization, the Global Fund mobilizes and invests more than US$4 billion a year to support programs run by local experts in more than 100 countries.
- In partnership with governments, civil society, technical agencies, the private sector and people affected by the diseases, we are challenging barriers and embracing innovation.
- The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria were created in 2002 to raise, manage and invest the world’s money to respond to three of the deadliest infectious diseases the world has ever known.
- The idea for the Global Fund arose from a wellspring of grass-roots political advocacy coming face-to-face with the imperatives of global leadership.
- AIDS, TB and malaria are all preventable and treatable – but solving this problem requires the commitment not only of world leaders and decision-makers but also of those working on the ground to help the men, women and children living with these diseases.
- The idea was discussed at a G8 summit in Okinawa, Japan, in 2000. The real commitment began to coalesce at the African Union summit in April 2001, continued at the United Nations General Assembly Special Session in June of that year.
- This was finally endorsed by the G8 at their summit in Genoa, Italy, on July 2001.
MoS (DoNER) to lay foundation stone of NERAMAC
- The Union Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region (IC) will lay the foundation stone of North Eastern Regional Agricultural Marketing Corporation Limited (NERAMAC) Marketing complex in Guwahati, Assam
- The NERAMAC Limited was incorporated in the year 1982 as a Government of India Enterprise and having its registered office at Guwahati and operating under the administrative control of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER).
- NERAMAC is a pioneer marketing organization in the field of Agri-Horti sector of the North-eastern region, involved in supporting farmers right from the fields and up to the markets to the end consumers through registered FPO/FPCs.
- NERAMAC, when having its own infrastructure developed with all facilities, will not only attain its sustainability but it also strengthens for the larger operation which will directly or indirectly benefit the farmers of the region.
- NERAMAC is continuously making all efforts for the development of the farmers of the Northeastern region and double their income by the end of 2022.
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