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Bilateral Current Affairs
September 2nd Week 2015 Current Affairs
Author : priya
Category : Bilateral Current Affairs
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September 2nd Week 2015 Current Affairs

1) India, US to launch innovation forum next year

Days ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi`s visit to the Silicon Valley, India and the US have agreed to launch a forum next year to boost innovation and related two-way investment and trade.
The two countries will launch a private sector-led Innovation Forum, which will serve as an additional avenue through which the two governments seek private sector feedback and input for bilateral discussions, the State Department said in a fact sheet released after the conclusion of the India US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue. 


  • The Forum will consider a set of rotating topics to ignite and scale innovation, increase related two-way investment and trade, support the advancement of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and identify where specific skill sets are needed to propel innovation forward
  • The Center for Strategic and International Studies will serve as a convener of the annual Innovation Forum, and will be supported by a steering committee comprising organisations from both countries, it said. The Innovation Forum will be memorialised in a broader Memorandum of Understanding related to innovation and entrepreneurship between the US and Indian governments.
  • India and the US also agreed to support the efforts of the Harvard Business School and the Indian Institute of Management Ahmadabad to develop a cluster map.
  • This tool will help Indian companies integrate into global supply chains, strengthen India`s economy and better enable American companies to identify markets for their products and services in India 
  • Cluster mapping will help US and Indian decision-makers develop more effective, evidence-based commercial linkages that will drive economic growth and development and enhance two-way trade and investment
  • According to the State Department, the two countries are working together to participate in the development of international standards and technical regulations to boost trade and help reduce administrative and logistical burdens, which disproportionately affect small and medium-sized enterprises. 
  • The two sides will engage their respective industries to identify sectors where standards and conformity assessment- focused cooperative dialogues could lead to mutual benefit and increased trade, it said. 
2) Emphasis on Make In India
Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a strong pitch for increased investment in various sectors in India in his meeting with top chiefs of 8 financial companies.
  • The Prime Minister Narendra Modi outlined his vision for "Start-Up India, Stand-Up India" and said that along with the public sector and private sector, he was laying emphasis on individual start-ups and entrepreneurs whom he referred to as the "personal sector." 
  • The Prime Minister met top executives of major media and communication companies in New York and discussed the latest trends in media and opportunities in India. 
  • Top executives of Comcast, Time Warner, Discovery, Sony, ESPN, News Corp, 21st Century Fox, Disney Industries, ABC television group were invited for the interaction with PM Modi. 
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged protection for Intellectual Property Rights, as he met top executives of major media and communication companies in New York. 
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged protection to Intellectual Property Rights. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that we are committed to protecting IPR which is essential to fostering creativity. 
  • The CEOs called for speeding up of television digitization, and strengthening of the Mobile Infrastructure. Prime Minister urged them to keep regional languages in mind, as they firm up investment plans for India. 


3) PM Modi meets Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina in New York: Prime Minister Narendra Modi met his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina in New York. The two leaders reviewed the progress of bilateral relations including the Land Boundary Agreement. Both leaders also discussed the issue of connectivity in the region. In the meeting, Bangladesh expressed its support for India’s position on UN Security Council reforms.

  • The Prime Minister also met his counterpart from Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Dr. Ralph Gonsalves in New York. The External Affairs Ministry has described the meeting as bringing the Caribbean closer. 
4) India to provide $5 million grant to treat Afghan children 
India will provide $5 million grant to Afghan Red Crescent Society for the treatment of Afghanistan`s children suffering from congenital heart disease in three hospitals in Delhi. The Indian Embassy signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with ARCS under which the financial assistance of $5 million will be given to the aid agency over a period of five years beginning 2015. 
  • The grant will be utilised for the treatment of Afghan children at Max, Artemis and Fortis hospitals in New Delhi. These hospitals have offered special concessional rates for treatment of the Afghan children. The first tranche of USD 1 million has already.


5)Looking at devolution of power to Tamils: Sri Lankan PM

  •  Current Affirs Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on 15th September said his government is looking at devolution of power to ethnic Tamils under the provisions of the Constitution. At present he is visiting in India. He held delegation level talks with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. 
  • Mr Wickremesinghe pitched for deeper economic engagement with India and hoped that both countries will be able to finalise the long-pending Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement by next year. 
  • Both Prime Ministers said the two countries are determined to take the relationship to the next level. The two sides also signed four agreements to deepen cooperation in health care and space science. 
  • In a joint statement, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, the Island nation is India`s largest partner in defence training programme and both will continue to expand cooperation in the area. 
  • Sri Lanka plans to go ahead with the promise of devolution of power to Tamil-majority areas, a move guaranteed under its constitution but not implemented so far, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said after meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi. 
6)Pentagon creates India Rapid Cell
Pentagon establishes first ever Rapid Reaction Cell to speed up its defence ties with India; the Indian Cell is seen as a mechanism to accelerate the process of co-development and co-production of hi-tech military equipment with India. 
  • The Pentagon has established a first-ever country special cell to speed up its defence ties with India and accelerate the process of co-development and co-production of hi-tech military equipment in the country. Currently, seven persons are working on this cell, representing various wings of the US Department of Defence. 
  • Given the new thrust on India-US defence relationship under Carter, officials say there is quite a few on the waiting list who have shown keen interest in working at the Pentagon`s India Rapid Reaction Cell. 
7) India, Cambodia ink MoUs for cooperation in Tourism, Mekong Ganga Project
India and Cambodia on 16th September signed two MoUs, one relating to Tourism and another umbrella project under Mekong Ganga Cooperation initiative. This covers five Quick Impact Projects which include two in health care, one on Women’s Empowerment through Information and Communications Technology, one on Agriculture and another a 50,000 US Dollar grant for the Cambodia-India Entrepreneurship Development Centre (CIEDC) which was launched in February 2006.
  • The MoUs were signed in an official ceremony at the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh, in the presence of visiting Vice President Md. Hamid Ansari. 
  • Earlier in his meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen, Indian Vice-President Md. Hamid Ansari said, cooperation between India and Cambodia is for mutual benefits and is guided by the requirements and priorities of the people of both the countries. 
8) India-Laos sign key agreements
Vice President Hamid Ansari on 18th September held delegation level talks with the Laotian leadership. India and Laos signed Air service agreement and another agreement on India`s grand assistance for quick impact projects were signed after the talks. This is the first visit of an Indian Vice President to Laos. 
  • After a day full of productive engagements at Vientiane, Vice President Mohammad Hamid Ansari wraps up his four day visit to Laos and Cambodia. 
  • The Vice President urged Laos leadership to continue its active support to India for the reforms in UN Security Council. Laos is a member of a group of 42 developing countries pressing for India`s bid to become a permanent member of the United Nations (UN) Security Council. On the issue of below potential trade relationship with Laos, Mr. Ansari urged the country to make better condition for investments. 
  • He identified three areas - mining, plantation and Small and Medium Enterprises- for investments by Indian companies. A business delegation from India will visit Laos by the end of this year to explore the avenues of trade and investment in Laos. The two countries also discussed on issues of bilateral security cooperation as well as in the context of ASEAN. 
  • The issue of furthering the Buddhist pilgrimage circuit linkages was also agreed to by the two countries. India has offered two scholarship for Buddhist studies in India and also scholarship for the participation of two Lao journalists in the North east music festival in Shillong. 



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