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Economy Current Affairs
Economy Current Affairs July 2nd Week 2017
Author : Admin
Category : Economy Current Affairs
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Economy Current Affairs July 2nd Week 2017

 1. EPFO signs Agreement with Five Banks.

The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has inked an agreement with four private banks and Bank of Baroda for the purpose of collection of provident fund dues from the employers and payments to its subscribers.
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This is the first time the EPFO has roped in private banks, namely, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank. Earlier, the EPFO was making use of the services of only the state-run banks. This move of the EPFO will help the organisation to save nearly Rs 300 crore per year as the five banks have agreed to zero transaction charges. 

Already the EPFO had tied up with five other banks. The five other banks are State Bank of India (SBI), Punjab National Bank, Allahabad Bank, Indian Bank and Union Bank of India. The latest agreement will now authorise 10 banks to collect provident fund contribution and make payment to the employees. Every year, the EPFO settles around 1.16 crore claims and collects ?75,000 crores from establishments under the EPF Act.

The Employee Provident Fund (EPF) is a retirement benefit applicable only to salaried employees. It is a fund to which both the employee and employer contribute fixed amount (percent) of the former’s basic salary amount each month. This percentage is pre-set by the government. At present, the entire EPF amount is tax-free at the time of withdrawal if the employee has completed five years of continuous service.
 
2.China-backed AIIB approves USD 329 million loan for Gujarat rural roads.
 
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The China-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in Beijing has approved a USD 329 million loan to build access roads to 4,000 villages in 33 Gujarat districts, the bank announced on Wednesday.

The roads will focus on last mile connectivity to schools and tribal areas, as well as introduce a first-of-its-kind digitised map that would link on-going rural roads projects in Gujarat to enable real-time monitoring, the bank said.
This follows the bank last month announcing a USD 150 million investment in an India infrastructure fund, aimed at attracting private investment capital to India.

China is the bank`s biggest shareholder, contributing around USD $30 billion to its USD 100 billion capital, and India is the second-biggest shareholder with an $8 billion contribution.

The AIIB`s Vice President and Chief Investment Officer D J Pandian, who happens to be a former Gujarat chief secretary and IAS officer, said the USD 329 million loan to Gujarat would "directly contribute to the economic development" by "improving the mobility of the rural population".

3. Union Ministry of Commerce & Industry inaugurated 10th Session of the India- Jordan Trade and Economic Joint Committee.

06 July 2017 Current Affairs: The 10TH India-Jordan Trade and Economic Joint Committee (TEJC) Meeting was held in New Delhi under the co-chairs of Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Commerce and Industry, Government of India, and H.E Eng. Mr. Yarub Qudah, Minister of Industry, Trade and Supply, the Government of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.

The roadmap for cooperation in various fields such as Fertilizer Sector, Customs, Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement, Visa and Consular issues, Health and Pharmaceuticals, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Maritime Transport, Rail Transport, and Air Transport, Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency, and Smart Grid development, Information Technology, Higher Education and Vocational Training, Agriculture sector.

4. India to be base to economic pole of global growth: Harvard University.

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According to the research conducted by the Centre for International Development at Harvard University (CID), India will be the base to the economic pole of global growth over the coming decade. The study has stated that over the years, the economic pole of global growth has moved from China to neighbouring India and it is likely to remain over India in the coming decade.

India :

The study has attributed India’s rapid growth prospects to the diversification of the country’s export base which now includes more complex sectors such as chemicals, vehicles and certain electronics. The study further states that India is also particularly well-positioned to continue diversifying into new areas.

World :

 The research study has warned of a continued slowdown in global growth over the coming decade. With 7.7% annual growth, India and Uganda top the list of the fastest growing economies. The growth projections indicate that the growth in emerging markets to continue to outpace that of advanced economies, though not uniformly. The study is also optimistic about new growth hubs in East Africa and new segments of South-East Asia, led by Indonesia and Vietnam. The major oil economies of the world are experiencing the pitfalls of their reliance on one resource. On the other hand, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam have accumulated new capabilities that permit more diverse and complex production will have faster growth in the coming years. 

China  :

The study has found a decline in China’s exports. Its economic complexity ranking has also declined four spots for the first time since the global financial crisis. However, the growth projections for China is still above the world average. China is expected to grow at 4.4% annually in the coming decade.

5. BMI Research: India to have a GDP Growth of 6.9% in this Fiscal. 

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According to BMI Research, a Fitch group company, India is expected to register a growth of 6.9% in this financial year. BMI Research was founded in 1984 by Business Monitor International and later in 2014, it was acquired by Fitch Group. The firm performs industry and financial market analysis in 24 industries and 200 global markets.

The report has observed that the Real GDP growth has slowed to 6.1 % year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2016-17. The growth rate is expected to pick up following the demonetisation drive in November 2016 but the weak public banks are expected to cap the economic recovery. The Public-Sector Banks are still plagued with mounting non-performing assets, which is expected to take a toll on India’s growth potential. Though the RBI has taken efforts to clean up the NPAs, the study observes that it will take some more time for credit allocation to the productive sectors of the economy. 

The report, however, expects the economy to continue to recover in the coming quarters as the negative ramifications of the demonetisation measure have already started wearing off. India is also expected to get benefits from positive demographic trends, greater external stability arising out of improved terms of trade from low oil prices, and continued reforms improving the business environment of the country.

Asia  The report expects a slowdown in economic growth in North Asia in 2017 and 2018. The slowdown will be driven by the structural slowdown in China, poor policy initiatives in Japan, and policy uncertainty in South Korea. 

In Asia, India and ASEAN are likely to remain as the bright spots in the region owing to their positive demographics and improvements in the business environments.

6. India becomes Fourth Largest Foreign Investor into UK.

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As per the official figures published by the UK’s Department for International Trade, India has become the fourth largest foreign investor into the UK in 2016-17. India has lost its position as the third largest investor to France.

In 2016-17, India had set up 127 new projects and safeguarded 7,645 existing jobs and created 3,999 new jobs in the UK. India is sharing the fourth spot with Australia and New Zeland, which had also set up 127 projects collectively.

The US remains the top most investor in the UK by setting up of 577 projects in 2016-17. China (including Hong Kong) with 160 projects and France with 131 projects have been placed in the second and third positions respectively.

The UK continues to be a great inward investment destination and remains extremely attractive to foreign investors even after its decision to exit the EU. The UK attributes open, liberal economy, world-class talent and business-friendly taxation as a reason for remaining extremely attractive to foreign investors. The UK had managed to attract more Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) projects than ever before for 2016-17. In a sum, UK claims itself as the number one destination for inward investment in Europe with the sectors such as technology, renewable energy, life sciences and creative industries all witnessing an increase in the number of projects and investments.

7. South Indian Bank ties up with PFG Forex.

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South Indian Bank has tied up with PFG Forex for remittance facility for the benefit of Indian expatriates from Australia. The new facility will leverage the bank to reach the Indian diaspora.

Under this arrangement, NRIs can enjoy cost-effective and fast remittance services using SIB`s Express facility. NRIs can visit the PFG Forex outlets across Australia for remittances to India. SIB is already having correspondent banking arrangement with National Australia Bank and Fly World Money Exchange for remittances to India.

Recently SIB’s international banking division has been awarded the ISO 9001: 2015 certification for Quality Management Systems. The certification was awarded for implementing systems and procedures as per the standards laid down by the International Organization for Standardisation.

 8. RBI limits Customer liability in Online Banking Services.

 
Reserve Bank Of India (RBI) issued directions on ‘Customer Protection – Limiting Liability of Customers in unauthorized Electronic Banking Transactions’.

If the customers report to the banks regarding the loss they suffer through online banking transactions within three days, then the amount involved will be credited to their accounts within a time period of 10 days.

The banks should ask its customers to mandatorily register for SMS alerts and e-mail for email alerts for electronic banking transactions.

 

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