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Daily News Analysis 28-02-2016

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

ESSENCE OF THE ARTICLE

1.         

 

Visit has improved ties with India: Oli (Page 15)

a)     I.R

a)     Nepal PM K.P. Sharma Oli has said that his visit to India had helped in improving the ties that had soured during the anti-Constitution protests even as the agitating Madhesis called it a complete failure and warned of a fresh stir if their demands were not met.

2.

Japan non-committal on supply of strategic amphibious aircraft to India (Page 15)

a)     I.R

a)     Sources told that Indias plans to acquire amphibious aircraft from Japan, in the first big military deal between the two countries, is facing serious challenges.

3.

Syrias fragile ceasefire takes hold (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     A rare calm prevailed across much of Syria as the first major ceasefire of the five-year war took hold and an international task force prepared to begin monitoring the landmark truce.

4.

Chinese President Xi Jinping invokes Mao to forge Communist Party unity (Pg16)

a)     International

a)     Chinese President Xi Jinping has once again taken recourse to Mao Zedongs thought as the common denominator to unite the Communist Party of China after targeting its specific factions under an unrelenting anti-corruption campaign.

5.

Scrutinise FDI from Singapore, Mauritius (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     A close scrutiny of foreign direct investments from Singapore and Mauritius is needed as both the nations accounted for about 60 percent of the $30 billion worth of FDI in India during the first three quarters of the current fiscal year.

6.

Sri Lankan industry split over economic pact with India (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce has come out in support of the proposed Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement with India even as certain sections of society in Sri Lanka continue to express reservations over the issue.

7.

Look beyond ultra-easy policy for growth: G20 (Page 18)

a)     Economy

a)    The worlds top economies declared that they need to look beyond ultra-low interest rates and printing money to shake the global economy out of its torpor, while renewing their focus on structural reform to spark activity.

8.

Jaitley may announce cut in corporate tax rate (Pages 1 and 14)

a)     National

b)     Economy

a)     Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is likely to propose in his budget on Feb 29 the lowering of the corporate tax from 30 percent to 29 percent, the first cut in the series planned to bring the rate down over the next four years to 25 percent.

9.

Will Paris Agreement prevent a sea change? (Page 12)

a)     Environment

b)     Geography

a)     Earlier this week, a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (US) analysed the most credible studies that have investigated the effect of global warming on the sea levels over the last 3000 years. It suggests that some studies were slight overestimates and other underestimated the role humans have played in exacerbating global warming.

 

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

BACKGROUND

IMPORTANT POINTS

1.         

 

Visit has improved ties with India: Oli (Page 15)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Nepal relations

b)     Nepals new Constitution

c)     Madhesis concerns

d)     United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF)

a)     Nepal PM K.P. Sharma Oli has said that his visit to India had helped in improving the ties that had soured during the anti-Constitution protests even as the agitating Madhesis called it a complete failure and warned of a fresh stir if their demands were not met.

b)     However, Oli said any demand against national interests would not be addressed.

c)     Meanwhile, the agitating UDMF held a meeting to review its protest programmes.  In a statement after the meeting, the UDMF termed Olis visit to India as a complete failure and said Prime Minister had made a mistake as he made the visit without any agenda.

d)     The Madhesis (who had announced withdrawal of their protests, including the border blockade) warned that they would resort to fresh protests if the government did not address their demands promptly.

2.

Japan non-committal on supply of strategic amphibious aircraft to India (Page 15)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Japan relations

b)     Military ties

c)     Maritime security

d)     East China Sea

e)     South China Sea

a)     Sources told that Indias plans to acquire amphibious aircraft from Japan, in the first big military deal between the two countries, is facing serious challenges.

b)     Indicating at a longer waiting period for Indias plans to acquire amphibious aircraft US-2 in a deal involving 12-18 aircraft, sources from Tokyo said that Japan had no immediate plans for selling or delivering the capacity-multiplier aircraft to India.

c)    Official said that though the bilateral dialogue, which was held on the sidelines of a trilateral meeting of India, Japan and Australia, discussed a wide range of maritime security-related issues, the issue of supplying US-2 amphibious aircraft to India did not come up during the talks.

d)     The absence of diplomatic progress on India acquiring the aircraft is significant in view of the fact that during PM Shinzo Abes visit to India in Dec 2015, they had concluded agreements on Transfer of the Defence Equipment and Technology, and, Security Measures for the Protection of Classified Military Information, aimed at deals such as the one on US-2.

e)     The joint statement issued during Abes visit had also mentioned that both sides were to work on the US-2 deal. The US-2 aircraft has been part of a long-pending demand from India and was specifically mentioned by PM Modi during his 2014 Japan visit.

f)     During Fridays dialogue, the two countries discussed enhanced maritime security and freedom of navigation-related issues in the East China Sea and South China Sea as well as security-related issues of the Indo-Pacific Ocean.

3.

Syrias fragile ceasefire takes hold (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     Syria peace deal

b)     Syria crisis

c)     Islamic State (IS)

d)     Al-Nusra Front

 

a)  A rare calm prevailed across much of Syria as the first major ceasefire of the five-year war took hold and an international task force prepared to begin monitoring the landmark truce.

b)     The nationwide cessation of hostilities (brokered by US and Russia) is seen as a crucial but fragile step towards ending a war that has claimed 270,000 lives and displaced more than half the population.

c)     It faces formidable challenges, including the exclusion of IS jihadist group and Al-Qaedas Syria affiliate Al-Nusra Front, which control large parts of the country.

d)     United Nations envoy Staffan de Mistura said peace talks would resume on March 7 if the truce holds and more aid is delivered - a key sticking point in negotiations.

e)     Russia (which has waged nearly five months of intense air strikes against rebels in support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad) said it had halted bombing in all areas covered by the truce.

4.

Chinese President Xi Jinping invokes Mao to forge Communist Party unity (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     Chinas internal issues

b)     Communist Party of China (CPC)

a)     Chinese President Xi Jinping has once again taken recourse to Mao Zedongs thought as the common denominator to unite the Communist Party of China after targeting its specific factions under an unrelenting anti-corruption campaign.

5.

Scrutinise FDI from Singapore, Mauritius (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA)

b)     Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)

 

a)     A govt statement tabled in the Parliament said that a close scrutiny of FDIs from Singapore and Mauritius is needed as both the nations accounted for about 60 percent of $30 billion worth of FDI in India during first three quarters of the current fiscal year.

b)    According to the Economic Survey, a detailed examination is needed to find out if they constitute actual investments or whether they are diversions from other sources to avail tax benefits under DTAA that India has with these two countries.

c)     According to govt data, of the $29.5 billion FDI into India during April-Dec 2015 in 2015-16, around $11 billion was from Singapore, while $6.1 billion was from Mauritius. These two countries together accounted for half of total FDI inflows into India during the15-year period.

d)    The Mauritius route is used for availing tax benefits and for ensuring anonymity. However, FDI from Mauritius is sector-agnostic unlike FDI from countries like Japan, Germany and France, which are mostly in manufacturing-related sectors. The Singapore route is used mostly by Indian entities with a regional office there.

6.

Sri Lankan industry split over economic pact with India (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     India – Sri Lanka economic ties

b)     Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement (ETCA)

c)     Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC)

a)     The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce has come out in support of proposed Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement with India even as certain sections of society in Sri Lanka continue to express reservations over the issue.

b)    According to the 177-year-old CCC, For Sri Lanka (being a small economy with a limited domestic market), trading more with the world and welcoming more business and investment partnerships from abroad is our only path to prosperity. In this, greater openness to trade in services cannot be ignored, due to its strong and growing link to goods trade and investment.

c)     It stated that the country in the last 15 years became more closed and more inward looking than before with a falling share of global exports and a declining exports-to-GDP ratio.

7.

Look beyond ultra-easy policy for growth: G20 (Page 18)

a)     Economy

a)     G-20

b)     European Union (EU)

c)     Brexit

d)     Europes refugee crisis

a)    The worlds top economies declared that they need to look beyond ultra-low interest rates and printing money to shake the global economy out of its torpor, while renewing their focus on structural reform to spark activity.

b)     A communique from the G20 finance ministers and central bankers flagged a series of risks to world growth, including volatile capital flows, a sharp fall in commodity prices and the potential shock of a British exit from the EU.

c)     The communique said the global recovery continues, but it remains uneven and falls short of our ambition for strong, sustainable and balanced growth.

d)  Faltering growth and market turbulence have exacerbated policy frictions between major economies in recent months, and the statement also noted concerns over escalating geopolitical tensions and Europes refugee crisis.

e)     The reference to Brexit had not been included in earlier versions of the text, but was added after British officials pressed for it. Britons will vote in June 23 referendum on whether to remain in the EU.

f)     The G20 ministers agreed to use all policy tools (monetary, fiscal and structural) individually and collectively to reach groups economic goals.

g)     The G20 (which spans major industrialised economies such as the US and Japan to the emerging giants of China and Brazil and smaller economies such as Indonesia and Turkey) reiterated in the communique a commitment to refrain from targeting exchange rates for competitive purposes, including through devaluations.

8.

Jaitley may announce cut in corporate tax rate (Pages 1 and 14)

a)     National

b)     Economy

a)     Economic Survey 2016-17

b)     GDP growth

c)     Fiscal deficit

d)     Corporate tax

 

 

a)     Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is likely to propose in his budget on Feb 29 the lowering of the corporate tax from 30 to 29 percent, the first cut in the series planned to bring the rate down over next 4 years to 25 percent. The road map for these cuts, along with the corresponding withdrawals of tax exemptions each year, will also be announced.

b)     Official source told that the fiscal deficit for current year will be kept within the target of 3.9 percent of GDP and the target for the next year of 3.5 percent has also been retained.

c)     The govt is exploring the possibility for leveraging the assets under management of Life Insurance Corporation, Employees Provident Fund Organisation and the National Pension Scheme as part of the plans for recapitalising the public sector banks that have stressed balance sheets and are saddled with bad loans. 

d)     The Economic Survey recommends that the assets of the RBI and other regulatory institutions be similarly used. Cross-holdings among banks could be considered later.

9.

Will Paris Agreement prevent a sea change? (Page 12)

a)     Environment

b)     Geography

a)     Climate change

b)     Global warming

c)     Green house gases

d)     Sea level rise

e)     Paris Agreement 2015

a)     Earlier this week, a study analysed most credible studies that have investigated the effect of global warming on the sea levels over the last 3000 years. It suggests that some studies were slight overestimates and other underestimated the role humans have played in exacerbating global warming.

b)     The results of this rapid accelerated rise in sea levels can be catastrophic. Of nearly 200 million people at risk about 50 million live in China.

c)     Several nations have more than 10 million people living on land at risk from sea-level rise, including in India, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Indonesia and Japan. Bangladesh is especially vulnerable, identified by the UN as the country most in danger from rising seas.

d)     The situation is also worrisome for low-lying island nations like Kiribati, the Maldives, the Marshall Islands and the Solomon Islands, where land is already so close to sea level that a few inches make a world of difference.

e)     Based on a new statistical approach, the study found that were it not for industrialization, the oceans would have only have risen 3-7 cm in the 20th century as opposed to the observed 14 cm.

f)     Further, based on whether the world continues to emit greenhouse gases at the current rate or whether it strictly adheres to what was agreed at the climate agreement in Paris last December, the seas would rise 52-131 cm or 24-61 cm respectively by 2100; the Paris consensus was on keeping average global temperature rise this century well below 2 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

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