Economy Current Affairs
Economy Current Affairs June 4th Week 2018
Category : Economy Current Affairs
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1. Union Government Collaborates With Google For Flood Forecasting.

The Central Water Commission (CWC), India’s apex technical organisation in the field of Water Resources, on June 18, 2018 signed a Collaboration Agreement with Google for flood forecasting. 

Union Minister for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Nitin Gadkari has expressed that collaboration with Google will help in effective flood management in India. 

Agreement between Central Water Commission and Google

i. CWC would use up to date technology of Google in the field of Artificial Intelligence, machine learning and geo spatial mapping for effective management of water resources particularly in the field of flood forecasting.

ii. The agreement involves dissemination of flood related information to the people using the dissemination platforms developed by Google. 

iii. This agreement will help crisis management agencies to deal extreme hydrological events in a better manner.

iv. Under collaborative arrangement, Google will use high resolution Digital Elevation Model and vast computational resources and Artificial Intelligence to generate flood inundation maps utilising the input provided by CWC.

v. The information would be disseminated with a lead time of up to 3 days. 

vi. For the flood season of 2018, flood forecasting would be done on trial basis and the same would be scaled up in near future.


2. RBI Eases Norms For FPIs To Invest In Debt.

The Reserve Bank has eased investment norms for foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) in debt, especially into individual large corporates, a move that can help attract more overseas flows and thereby help arrest the recent fall in the rupee on one hand and also lift the recent fall in demand for corporate bonds.

FPIs are allowed to invest in various debt market instruments such as government bonds, treasury bills, state development loans and corporate bonds, but with certain limits and restrictions. The RBI increased the FPIs cap on investment in government securities to 30% of the outstanding stock of that security, from the 20% earlier.

FPIs were allowed to invest in government bonds with a minimum residual maturity of three years.

Government securities

“Henceforth, FPIs are permitted to invest in government securities (G-secs), including treasury bills and SDLs without any minimum residual maturity requirement, subject to the condition that short-term investments by an FPI under either category shall not exceed 20% of the total investment of that FPI in that category,” the RBI said in a notification. Short-term investments are defined as those with residual maturity of up to one year.


3. RBI Alters ‘Relative’ Definition To Check Outward Remittances.

Concerned over funds sent abroad under the ‘maintenance of close relative’ category of the Liberalised Remittance Scheme (LRS), the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has narrowed the definition of relatives to check the flow of funds.

Hence, funds under the ‘maintenance of close relative’ category can be sent only to immediate relatives such as parents, spouses, children and their spouses. This has brought about by defining ‘relatives’ under the Companies Act, 2013 instead of the same act of 1956.

“In the context of remittances allowed under LRS for maintenance of close relatives, it has been decided to align the definition of ‘relative’ with the definition given in Companies Act, 2013 instead of Companies Act, 1956,” the central bank had said in its June policy statement.

Outward remittances under maintenance of close relatives shot up to almost $3 billion in 2017-18 from a mere $174 million in 2013-14. In fact, funds sent under this category have more than doubled since 2015-16.


4. IRDAI Sets Up Panel To Review Norms For Marketing Firms.

Regulator Irdai has set up a 10-member panel to review norms related to insurance marketing firm (IMF) with an aim to increase insurance penetration in the country. The new distribution channel of IMF was introduced in 2015 by Irdai, with the objective of increasing insurance penetration through an area–wise registration approach.

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (Irdai) conducted three workshops for the IMFs last month, wherein operational feedback was received from them. In an order, the Irdai said that a review of the regulations is necessary to enable the channel to evolve and fulfil the objective of spreading insurance coverage to all stratum of the society and set up 10-member committee for the purpose.

The committee, headed by Suresh Mathur (ED-IMF, Irdai), has been asked to revisit the IRDAI (Registration of Insurance Marketing Firms) Regulations, 2015.

Among other things, the committee has also been asked to provide recommendations for issuing guidelines on the areas on which the regulations are silent.

The panel has to submit its recommendations by end-July.


5. SEBI Simplifies Buyback Regulations, Changes IPO Price Band Timeline.

The Securities and Exchange Board (SEBI) has approved amendments to buyback and takeover regulations and changed the time for announcing the price band of initial public offering (IPO) from 5 to 2 days, chairman Ajay Tyagi told reporters. SEBI had made a proposal to bring changes based on suggestions made by the regulator’s Primary Market Advisory Committee (PMAC). In a consultation paper, Sebi had proposed that entities would not be required to file draft papers for rights issue worth up to Rs 10 crore.

In a press conference on Thursday, SEBI chief also informed that enforcement action has been initiated against various entities in NSE co-location case. The watchdog has been probing the alleged lapses in high-frequency trading offered through the National Stock Exchange’s co-location facility. In the coming few days, the enforcement actions would be completed against the entities, he added.

In March, the NSE said Sebi had returned its consent application in the case due to the ongoing investigation.

The exchange’s Rs 10,000 crore IPO has been delayed because of the probe and the regulator had earlier issued show-cause notices to several individuals and the exchange while also probing the role of some brokers.


6. Russia To Supply Technical Security Equipment To India.

Russian state atomic energy corporation Rosatom on 21 June said that its subsidiary Nikiret has signed an agreement with Indian engineering services firm Core Energy Systems Pvt Ltd for the promotion of its technical security equipment in India.

Rosatom, who are the technical consultants and equipment suppliers for the Nuclear Power Corp of India-operated Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project in Tamil Nadu, said in a statement here that under the contract, Mumbai-headquartered Core will "buy technical security equipment from Nikiret and promote it in India as an integrated security solution".

"Integrated security systems are a group of technical protective means intended for organisation of alarm security subsystems, monitoring of access control subsystems, monitoring of CCTV subsystems and performance of warning functions," Nikiret Director Vadim Pervuninskikh said in a statement.

"This partnership is a major milestone towards sourcing of technology and equipment from Russia and developing security systems and solutions for the defence sector and other strategic installations like nuclear, oil and gas in India," said Core Chairman Nagesh Basarkar.

The two companies will jointly explore opportunities and provide a wide range of services including access control and security systems, data acquisition and processing and mobile security, the statement added.

According to Core Chief Executive Pranay Kumar, the partnership will explore opportunities in the Indian government`s Comprehensive Integrated Border Management System (CIBMS) project."CIBMS is a smart fencing project to identify and protect infiltration and secure the border. The systems will be indigenously developed and implemented by sourcing variety of sensors in technological collaboration with Nikiret," he said.TAGS