PIB Daily

PIB Daily – 25th & 26th August 2019 – IASToppers

World Skills Kazan 2019; Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP);Worldskills; WorldSkills International competition; Worldskills India;
By IASToppers
August 26, 2019

Contents

Bilateral & International Relations

  • Stakeholders’ Consultations by Department of Commerce on RCEP
  • Russian PM inaugurates global skill competition in Kazan
 
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 Bilateral & International Relations

Stakeholders’ Consultations by Department of Commerce on RCEP

In the last 6 years of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) negotiations, more than 100 stakeholders’ consultations have been held by the Department of Commerce and other lead Ministries seeking industry inputs for formulating India’s interests.

RCEP-IASToppers

ABOUT REGIONAL COMPREHENSIVE ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP (RCEP)

  • The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement (FTA) is proposed between the ten member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) (Brunei, Burma (Myanmar), Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam) and the six states with which ASEAN has existing FTAs (Australia, China, India, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand).

RCEP-2-IASToppers

  • RCEP negotiations were formally launched in November 2012 at the ASEAN Summit in Cambodia.
  • The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is among the proposed three mega FTAs in the world so far. The other two is:
    • The TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership, led by the US) and
    • The TTIP (Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership between the US and the EU).
  • RCEP is viewed as an alternative to the TPP trade agreement, which includes the United States but excludes China.
  • RCEP is the world’s largest economic bloc, covering nearly half of the global economy and is estimated that by 2050 the GDP of RCEP member states is likely to amount to nearly 250 trillion USD with the combined GDPs of India and China making up more than 75 percent of the amount.

RCEP-3-IASToppers

SIGNIFICANCE FOR INDIA

  • If India is out of the RCEP, it would make its exports price uncompetitive. This will led to the export-losses contributing to foreign exchange shortages and the subsequent extent of depreciation of the rupee can.
  • RCEP is a comprehensive agreement which helps tap the economic outcomes that get generated due to the interlinkages among various segments of trade.
  • These inter-linkages are particularly important when India endeavors to integrate with a region, which has been the most successful region of the world in terms of thriving regional value chains (RVCs). These RVCs necessitate freer movement of professionals across countries in the region.

INDIA’S CONCERNS ASSOCIATED WITH RCEP

  • India is not comfortable with the ambitious dismantling of import tariffs being pushed for by the ASEAN, especially as it would also mean allowing duty-free access to Chinese goods.
  • The Indian industry does not want the country to commit to high levels of liberalisation as it fears that it could get out-priced in the domestic market.
  • India has also stressed on the need for other RCEP members to deliver in the area of services to arrive at an agreement. So far proposals in the area of services, including on work-visas for movement of professionals, have been disappointing with no member ready to make meaningful contributions.
  • Emphasis of RCEP is on trade in goods and the same enthusiasm is not shared for trade in services. The reluctance in giving market access for trade in services is a big challenge for India.

RCEP

  • While there is immense pressure on India in the RCEP negotiations to commit to opening up (90%) of its traded goods, what is troubling the government is the fact that other RCEP countries have so far been lukewarm to India’s demands for greater market access in services, particularly on easing norms on the movement of professionals and skilled workers across borders for short-term work.
  • India, which is defensive regarding opening up its goods sector, is currently virtually isolated in the RCEP talks. Also, existing huge goods trade deficit has led to questions on whether the pact is only helping ASEAN nations and not benefiting India.
  • Significantly, while the India-ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement was inked and enforced from January 1, 2010, India’s goods trade deficit with ASEAN widened from $4.98 billion in 2010-11 to $14.75 billion in 2015-16, and then narrowed to $9.56 billion in 2016-17. The huge goods trade deficit has led to questions on whether the pact is only helping ASEAN nations and not benefiting India.
[Ref: PIB, Livemint]

Bilateral & International Relations

Russian PM inaugurates global skill competition in Kazan

Russian Prime Minister Inaugurated World Skills Kazan 2019, global championship of vocational skills and trades, in a ceremony at Kazan Arena.

Russian Prime Minister

ABOUT THE WORLD SKILLS KAZAN 2019

  • Russia hosted the 45th WorldSkills competition for the first time at Kazan stadium.

Kazan-Arena

  • WorldSkills Kazan 2019 is expected to be the largest WorldSkills Competition ever held.

WORLDSKILLS

  • Founded in 1950, WorldSkills is the global hub for skills excellence and development.
  • Formerly known as the International Vocation Training Organisation (IVTO), WorldSkills brings youth, industries, and educators together to give youth the chance to compete.
  • It has currently 82 members including India.

WORLDSKILLS INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION

WorldSkills-Kazan-2019-1-IASToppers

  • WorldSkills International is the largest skill competition in the world, organized once every two years in one of the member countries.
  • More than 1300 contestants below the age of 23 (With the exception of several skills with an upper age limit of 25), compete for gold, silver and bronze medals, in over 50 skills.
  • The competition is held over a span of four days.

WORLDSKILLS INDIA

  • WorldSkills India is an initiative of the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) under the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship.
  • NSDC, through its WorldSkills India initiative, has been leading the country’s participation at WorldSkills International competitions since 2011.

The key objectives of WorldSkills India are to:

  • Promulgate skills in the society and motivate the youth to pursue vocational education.
  • Champion skills and learning for work through skills competition
  • Establish links with the WSI secretariat along with development of cooperation with the Government and awarding bodies.

NATIONAL SKILLS COMPETITION OF INDIA

nsdc-IASToppers

  • Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) & National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) launched India’s first National Skills Competition- IndiaSkills.
  • It is a biennial competition.
[Ref: PIB, Business Standard]

 

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