IASToppers-Current-Affairs-Analysis-7th-Dec-2015
Current Affairs Analysis

7th December 2015 Current Affairs Analysis

December 07, 2015

Contents

 

Economy

  • Singapore has replaced Mauritius as the top source of FDI into India
  • India may ratify WTO trade facilitation pact

International Relations

  • Indo-Russia Bilateral Naval Exercise (INDRA NAVY- 15)

Also in News

  • PM releases commemorative coins on Dr. B.R. Ambedkar

Economy

Singapore has replaced Mauritius as the top source of FDI into India

Singapore has replaced Mauritius as the top source of foreign direct investment (FDI) into India during the first half of the current financial year, according to data from the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP).

Details:

  • During April-September 2015, India has attracted $6.69 billion (Rs 43,096 crore) FDI from Singapore while from Mauritius; it received $3.66 billion (Rs 23,490 crore).
  • Overall, Singapore accounts for 15 per cent of the total FDI India received between April 2000 and September 2015. However, Mauritius makes up 34 per cent of FDI during the same period.
  • Sectors that attracted the highest foreign investment during April-September 2015 include computer software and hardware ($3.05 billion), trading ($2.30 billion), services and automobile ($1.46 billion each) and telecommunications ($659 million).
  • Foreign investment is crucial for India, which needs about $1 trillion by March 2017 to overhaul infrastructure such as ports, airports and highways, and to boost growth.

Business

(Image Courtesy: Business Standard)

Reasons:

  • According to experts, the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) with Singapore incorporates Limit-of-Benefit (LoB) clause, which has provided comfort to foreign investors based there to invest in India.
  • Investors are preferring Singapore to Mauritius as the LoB clause in India-Singapore treaty provides substance and certainty.

[Source: Business Standard]

India may ratify WTO trade facilitation pact

India is likely to ratify the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA).

TFA aimed at easing customs rules to expedite trade flows, during the Nairobi meeting of the global trade body from December 15 to 18.

About Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA):

  • The Trade Facilitation Agreement contains provisions for expediting the movement, release and clearance of goods, including goods in transit.
  • It also sets out measures for effective cooperation between customs and other appropriate authorities on trade facilitation and customs compliance issues. It further contains provisions for technical assistance and capacity building in this area.
  • In December 2013, WTO members concluded negotiations on a Trade Facilitation Agreement at the Bali Ministerial Conference, as part of a wider “Bali Package”. Since then, WTO members have undertaken a legal review of the text.
  • In line with the decision adopted in Bali, WTO members adopted on 27 November 2014 a Protocol of Amendment to make the TFA a part of the overall WTO Agreement.
  • However, the TFA will become operational only after two-thirds of the members ratify it. So far, only 53 of the 162 member countries have done so.

According to Sources:

  • Not using all the available safeguards could lead to greater chances of India finding it difficult to implement all its TFA-related commitments on time, thereby giving opportunities to other countries to drag it (India) to the WTO’s dispute settlement panel.
  • The flexibilities available in the TFA for developing countries, but which India may not use to the full extent, include the one allowing them to take sufficient time in implementing certain commitments and the provision to seek assistance or support from donor countries for capacity building.

India is planning to ratify the TFA as part of the government’s initiatives to attract more investment by improving India’s ranking in the World Bank’s “ease of doing business” report.

[Source: The Hindu, WTO.org]

International Relations

Indo-Russia Bilateral Naval Exercise (INDRA NAVY- 15)

INDRA NAVY-15 is the 8th edition of bilateral maritime exercise between the Indian and Russian navies. It will be conducted at Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh in the Bay of Bengal.

About INDRA NAVY:

  • Initiated in 2003, INDRA NAVY is a bilateral maritime exercise between the Indian and Russian navies and epitomises the strategic relationship between the two countries.
  • The exercise has matured over the years with increasing scope, complexity of operations and level of participation.
  • The primary aim of this exercise is to increase interoperability between the two navies and develop common understanding of procedures for maritime security operations.
  • The scope of INDRA NAVY- 15 includes wide- ranging professional interactions during the Harbour phase and a diverse canvas of operational activities at sea across a spectrum of maritime operations.
  • INDRA NAVY-15 will help to further strengthen mutual confidence and interoperability, and also enable sharing of best practices between both navies.
  • The exercise will be another milestone in strengthening maritime security cooperation between the two navies and will also serve to reinforce the long standing bond of friendship between the two countries.

[Source: PIB]

Also in News

PM releases commemorative coins on Dr. B.R. Ambedkar

 

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, today released two commemorative coins, as part of the 125th birth anniversary year celebrations of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.

The coins, which are of “ten-rupee” and “one hundred and twenty-five rupee” denomination, were issued on the Mahaparinirvan Divas of Babasaheb Ambedkar.

The Prime Minister said Dr. Ambedkar and the Constitution of India should always be discussed and talked about in this country, and the observance of Constitution Day on November 26th, was a step in this direction.

[Source: PIB]

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