(Current Affairs) India and The World | July + August: 2015

India & The World

  • Bangladesh Government Approves Trade Deal with India (Free Available)

  • PM Modi Visits to France (Free Available)

  • India Contributes US $ 100,000 to The International Trade Centre Trust Fund (Free Available)

  • India Elected to Four Key Bodies of UN (Free Available)

  • US and India Sign MoC on Transportation (Only for Online Coaching Members)

  • India and Qatar Sign Six Agreements (Only for Online Coaching Members)

  • India and Japan sign Rs 1800 cr Loan for Rengali Irrigation Project (Only for Online Coaching Members)

Bangladesh Government Approves Trade Deal with India

  • Bangladesh’s cabinet has approved a revised trade agreement with India allowing for the trans-shipment of goods through each other’s territories across land and water routes through a third country in the neighbourhood in a bid to remove a long-standing barrier to smoothening regional trade.

Key facts of the deal

  • The revised agreement will facilitate both countries to use each other’s land and water routes for trade with a third country and remove long standing barrier in regional trade.

  • With this Bangladesh will be able to use Indian railways, roads and waterways in transshipment of goods to Bhutan and Nepal. While, India will be able to send goods to Myanmar through Bangladesh.

  • Under the modified deal both countries will be able to use transport networks for transporting the goods for a fee. These fees and charges for transporting goods will be the same for both the countries and will be fixed through bilateral discussions.

  • The deal will be in force for 5 years instead of the existing tenure of 3 years, and further can amended through mutual agreement.

  • At present, India has similar agreement with Nepal and Bhutan but Bangladesh’s trade with Nepal and Bhutan was hindered for want of such a treaty with India. Previously, trucks from Nepal and Bhutan entering from Bangladesh along the Indian border were required to park at a specific point near border. But under the revised deal, trucks from Nepal and Bhutan will enter Bangladesh through the Indian corridors.

  • Dhaka and New Delhi signed their original trade agreement in 1972 soon after the emergence of an independent Bangladesh. Under the terms of the deal, which had crucial Indian support but expired on March 31, trade could only be done between the two neighbours while India could transport goods to its seven north-eastern states.

PM Modi Visits to France

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has recently visited France, where India and France have signed 20 agreements in various fields .Below is the list of agreements/initiatives/announcements signed/agreed during Modi’s visit:

  1. MoU between L&T and AREVA: It is aimed at cost reduction by increasing localization, to improve the financial viability of Jaitapur project. It will also enable transfer of technology and development of indigenous nuclear energy industry in India.

  2. Pre-engineering agreements between NPCIL and Areva: The PEA studies intend to bring clarity on all technical aspects of the plant so that all parties (AREVA, Alstom and NPCIL) can firm up their price and optimize all provisions for risks still included at this stage in the costs of the project.

  3. MoU between ISRO and CNES on Megha Tropiques: The Indo-French Megha Tropiques satellite was launched on board the Indian launch vehicle, PSLV on October 12, 2011. The MoU shall extend by 2 more years, the joint project for sharing and use of data from the satellite.

  4. ‘MOU between ISRO, CNES and ONERA for Ka-band propagation experiment over Indian tropical region’: The MoU envisages cooperation for implementation of the project concerning Ka- band propagation experiment over Indian tropical region. The main objective is to collect Ka-Band attenuation data using available Ka-Band transmission and perform analysis along with corresponding radio meter and meteorological data.

  5. Programme between ISRO and French National Centre for Space Studies (CNES): The Agreement proposes cooperation in the areas of Satellite Remote sensing, satellite communications and satellite meteorology; space sciences and planetary exploration; data collection and location; operations of satellite ground stations and spacecraft mission management; space research and applications. It covers the potential cooperation activities such as joint earth observation mission, hosted payload opportunities and Mars exploration.

  6. MoU on Cooperation between the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports of India and French Ministry of Sports, Youth Affairs, Public Education and Community Life The MoU envisages cooperation and exchange of experiences in the fields of sports medicine, institutional cooperation, development of practice of sports in the context of proximity sports, support of participation of women and the disabled in sports, management and coordination of sports federations, training of executives and establishment of National Institute of Sports in India based on French model of INSEP.

  7. Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cooperation in the field of renewable energy between the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Government of India and the Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, Government of France The understanding reached in this MoU will help establish the basis for cooperation and relationship to encourage and promote technical bilateral cooperation on new and renewable energy issues on the basis of mutual benefits and reciprocity through exchange and training of technical personnel, exchange of information and data, joint research and transfer of know-how and technology. It would cover solar, wind, bio-energy, tidal and wave energy sectors.

  8. Railway protocol between Indian Ministry of Railways and French National Railways (SNCF): The Protocol seeks to establish cooperation between Indian and French Railways for semi-high speed rail and station renovation.

  9. Guarantee Agreement with AFD Financing of Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL): The Agreement seeks to finance Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL)

  10. Administrative Arrangement in the field of Cultural Heritage: The Administrative Arrangement between the Indian Ministry of Culture and French Ministry of Culture and Communication, envisages cooperation in the field of cultural heritage, through training of Indian heritage conservation professionals at the Institute National du Patrimoine (INP), a higher education establishment of training for curators and restorers in the field of heritage in France, as well as Development of cultural and scientific cooperation in the fields of conservation and restoration of the heritage, short duration training sessions in India by INP trainers in Indian institutes and training of French training in India etc.

  11. Letter of Intent on Tourism: LoI for increasing cooperation in tourism sector signed between India and France aims to promote sustainable bilateral tourism between the two countries including through mutual promotion of tourism, ensuring safety of tourists and encouraging sharing of expertise and best practices. The LoI also seeks to facilitate twinning of sites having historical, natural and cultural significance in India and France for promoting them as tourist destinations.

  12. Letter of Intent (LoI) between the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and National Institute of Preventive Archaeological Research (INRAP): The LoI envisages collaboration on preventive archaeology projects, initiatives to disseminate culture and promote archaeology, training programmes for specialists of ASI and deployment of expertise, in particular, in the field of underwater archaeology.

  13. MOU between School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi and National Architecture Institute: The MoU envisages cooperation to undertake joint planning and geographical studies in India and France and training of local counterparts in modern urban and regional research as well as in techniques of scientific methods in Urban and regional planning, geography, environment, Building engineering and management.

  14. MoU between Indian Heritage Cities Network Foundation (IHCN) and Association Nationale des Villes et Pays d’Art et d’Histoire et villes a secteurs sauvegardés et protégés (‘ANVPAH’) This MoU envisages cooperation between to cooperate in the fields of sustainable development, urban planning, heritage conservation and up-gradation of basic services.

  15. Proposal for twinning of historical monuments: Twinning of historical monuments is covered under the LoI on Tourism Cooperation.

  16. VIE scheme to allow Indian students in France and French students in India to stay for a period of 24 months. The Volontariat International en Entreprise (VIE) scheme offers Indian Visa for 12 months renewable once for a period of 12 months for 250 French students and a ‘second residence permit’ of 12 months for the Indian students in France following the 12 months already granted.

  17. Letter of Intent on Ayurveda between Ministry of Ayush and University of Strasbourg: LoI allows both the parties to strengthen their relationships and cooperation in the area of Ayurveda education and research by undertaking academic and research activities, exploring feasibility of collaborative research, and drawing up strategies for dissemination of results of completed studies, Conducting joint workshops/conferences on Ayurveda as complimentary medicine in France

  18. MoU between National Skill Development Agency (NSDA), India and the National Commission for Vocational Qualifications: The agreement will facilitate exchange of information and knowledge about maintenance of qualification registers through information exchanges, visits and other suitable meetings.

  19. MoU on cooperation in the field of Science & Technology between Department of Science & Technology of India and the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS): The MoU is for cooperation between the two countries in the areas of applied mathematics, physics, Information & communication technology, water resources and environment, life sciences, astronomy, climate and energy by exchange of information, organization of meetings/workshops/seminars, exchange of research personnel; joint projects; establishment of Virtual Joint Laboratories, and establishment of Joint Research Centres.

  20. MoU between Department of Biotechnology of India and CNRS and UPMC on Collaboration forestablishment of a National Institute of Marine Biology and Biotechnology in India: The proposed MoU seeks to establish a National Institute of Marine Biology and Biotechnology in India, with a Hub and Spoke network of laboratories

India Contributes US $ 100,000 to The International Trade Centre Trust Fund

  • Ambassador and Permanent Representative of India to UN and other International Organisations, Mr. Ajit Kumar and Executive Director of ITC, Ms. Arancha Gonzalez signed an agreement on 15 March 2015 authorising ITC to use India’s contribution of US $ 100,000 to ITC Trust Fund for its Trade Related Technical Assistance (TARA) programme.

  • ITC is the technical cooperation agency of UNCTAD and WTO for operational and enterprise-oriented aspects of international trade development. It was created in 1964 through a decision of GATT contracting parties and in 1968 UNCTAD joined GATT as co-sponsor. ITC supports developing countries, particularly Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Land Locked Developing Countries (LLDCs), Small Island Developing States (SIDS), Sub- Saharan Africa, fragile states, small and vulnerable economies and economies in transition to develop Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) competitiveness through trade and international business development.

India Elected to Four Key Bodies of UN

India has been elected to four key subsidiary bodies of the United Nations’ agency on economic and social issues. India was elected by acclamation, a form of election that does not use a ballot, to the subsidiary bodies of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) during its coordination and management meeting on Wednesday.

With the election wins, India maintained its 100 per cent record of winning elections held in the United Nations Headquarters here.

Four Key Bodies are

  • United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF): It was elected, along with 13 other nations, to the Executive Board of the UNICEF for a three-year term beginning January 2016. UNICEF addresses the needs of children with emphasis on giving long-term benefits to children everywhere, particularly those in developing countries.

  • World Food Programme (WFP): India was also re-elected to the Executive Board of the WFP for the 2016-2018 term along with five other nations. WFP is the food assistance arm of the UN which provides food assistance to around 90 million people in 80 countries in a year.

  • Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ): It was among the 20 nations to be elected to the CCPCJ for a three-year term, beginning January 2016. The CCPCJ provides policy guidance to UN Member States on crime prevention and criminal justice and develop, monitor and review implementation of the UN crime prevention programme.

  • United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat): India also got re-elected to the Governing Council of the UN-Habitat for the term 2016-2019. UN-Habitat is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all.

Click Here for India & The World Full Issue

Click Here to Join Online Coaching for IAS (Pre.) Exam

<< Go Back To India and World Main Page