Banking Awareness of 10, 11 and 12 April 2024

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 12 Apr 2024 23:27 PM IST
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Topic: Infrastructure and Energy

1. India's renewable energy sector added the most additional capacity to the grid annually ever in FY24.

  • 81% of the growth was attributable to the solar power sector. 18,485 MW of additional capacity were added in total during FY24.
  • At 15,274 MW, the total new capacity added in FY24 was greater than the capacity added in FY23.
  • Over the previous three years (FY24, FY23, and FY22), the renewable energy sector gained approximately 15,950 MW annually on average.
  • In the solar power sector, new capacity addition increased by almost 18% in FY24.
  • In FY24, the solar market added 15,033 MW of new capacity.
  • Based on data from the Union Ministry of New & Renewable Energy, it was 12,784 MW in FY23 and 12,761 MW in FY22.
  • About 2,992 MW were added to the rooftop solar segment in FY2024. This was a 34% rise over FY23.
  • The states with the highest number of large-scale solar installations in FY2024 were Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, and Rajasthan.
  • In the preceding fiscal year, Gujarat installed the highest rooftop solar capacity of 964 MW.
  • Rajasthan (267 MW) and Maharashtra (583 MW) followed it.
  • Over 3000 MW of new capacity were added annually from the wind power sector.
  • In FY24, it was 3253 MW. In FY23, it was 2276 MW. In FY22, it was 1111 MW.
  • Gujarat took over as the state with the most wind power installations last year, surpassing Tamil Nadu.
  • Gujarat kept up its top position in FY2024 with a 1,744 MW increase.     
  • Tamil Nadu and Karnataka contributed 586 MW and 725 MW, respectively.
  • Tamil Nadu had a wind capacity of 10,604 MW as of March 2024, compared to 11,723 MW in Gujarat.
  • India had 144 GW of total renewable energy capacity as of March 31, 2024.

Topic: Banking/Financial/Govt Schemes

2. Disbursements of small business loans under the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana (PMMY) increased at a record rate in FY24.

  • The amount of small business loans under the PMMY surpassed ₹5 lakh crore.
  • The amount of loans approved in the most recent fiscal year was ₹5.28 lakh crore.
  • The entire amount disbursed was ₹5.20 lakh crore in the fiscal year that concluded in March 2024, compared to ₹4.40 lakh crore in the preceding fiscal year.
  • Women make up around 70% of the borrowers who receive these loans.
  • If the provisional data for FY24 is included, almost ₹46 lakh crore has been disbursed in Mudra loans since the scheme's inception in 2015.
  • Mudra loans are given in three categories. These categories are Shishu (up to ₹50,000), Kishor (above ₹50,000 and up to ₹5 lakh) and Tarun (above ₹5 lakh and up to ₹10 lakh).
  • Between March 2022 and June 2023, the gross non-performing assets (NPAs) in PMMY decreased from 3.17 percent to 2.68 percent.
  • On April 8, 2015, Prime Minister Modi introduced the Pradhan Mantri MUDRA Yojana (PMMY), which aims to lend up to ₹10 lakh to the non-corporate, non-farm small/micro enterprises.

Topic: Banking System 

3. HDFC became the first private bank to open a branch in Lakshadweep.

  • To become the only private sector bank to have a branch in Lakshadweep, private lender HDFC Bank opened a branch in Kavaratti Island.
  • The objective of this branch is to upgrade the banking infrastructure in the Union Territory by offering a wide range of services focusing on personal banking and digital banking.
  • Its objective also includes customized digital solutions for retailers including QR-based transactions.
  • HDFC Bank has branches in the cold regions of Kashmir, the southern tip of Kanyakumari and now Lakshadweep, a major tourist destination.
  • As of December 31, 2023, HDFC Bank's distribution network stood at 8,091 branches and 20,688 ATMs across 3,872 cities or towns.
  • While as of December 31, 2022, it stood at 7,183 branches and 19,007 ATMs across 3,552 cities or towns.
  • About 52% of HDFC's branches are in semi-urban and rural areas.

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Topic: Banking System

4. Karnataka Bank has entered into partnership with FISDOM.

  • The partnership is to provide 3-in-1 (savings, demat and trading accounts) facility.
  • These facilities will be offered through the KBL Mobile Plus, which is the mobile banking app of Karnataka Bank.
  • The current value proposition of allowing users to invest in equities and mutual funds will be improved by this partnership.
  • With the help of this, clients will have easy access to trading features and investment opportunities through a single, user-friendly interface.
  • Customers can simplify their investment journey by merging their trading and demat accounts with the 3-in-1 service.
  • Karnataka Bank is a Scheduled Commercial Bank based in Mangaluru, Karnataka.
  • It is a private sector bank. It was founded in 1924. Srikrishnan Hari Hara Sarma is its MD and CEO.

Topic: Banking System

5. Surinder Chawla has resigned as the head of Paytm Payments Bank.

  • Surinder Chawla is MD and CEO of Paytm Payments Bank Limited (PPBL).
  • Chawla has resigned due to personal reasons and to explorer career prospects.
  • Chawla will be relieved from the payments bank on 26 June, 2024.
  • Its parent company One97 Communications has recently got the TPAP licence from NPCI for third-party UPI services.
  • PPBL’s board was recently reconstituted with five independent directors.
  • Ex-Central Bank of India Chairman Srinivasan Sridhar, and retired IAS officer Debendranath Sarangi were appointed as independent directors.
  • Former Executive Director of Bank of Baroda Ashok Kumar Garg, and retired IAS Rajni Sekhri Sibal were also appointed as independent directors.
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Topic: Appointments

6. The US-India Tax Forum has appointed Tarun Bajaj as its new head.

  • The US-India Tax Forum is an US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF) initiative.
  • Tarun Bajaj is the former Revenue Secretary and Secretary of Economic Affairs to the Government of India.
  • He joined USISPF as an advisor to the Board of Directors in January 2024.
  • He is a 1988 batch IAS of Haryana Cadre.
  • US-India Tax Forum is a tax policy-dedicated forum to encourage the development of a strong partnership between India and US.
  • It was launched on 25 February 2020 as an independent not-for-profit institution.

Topic: Banking/Financial/Govt Schemes

7. The pre- and post-shipment rupee export credit interest equalization scheme is probably going to be further extended by the Commerce Ministry.

  • The Ministry of Commerce may apply for an additional five-year extension of this scheme in order to boost exports from India.
  • On June 30, 2024, the interest equalization scheme for pre- and post-shipment rupee export credit would come to an end.
  • The Union Cabinet authorized an extra ₹2,500 crore on December 8, 2023, to keep the scheme running up to June 30.
  • The scheme went into effect on April 1st, 2015. It was first in effect for five years up to March 31, 2020.

Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

8. Clean Economy Investor Forum will be organized by Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) in Singapore.

  • Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) will host its first clean economy investor forum in Singapore on June 5-6.
  • India will also showcase selected ‘investible sustainable infrastructure projects’ at the forum. It is focused on energy transition, sustainable aviation fuel, battery storage hydrogen, green data centres, etc.
  • This forum will bring together the region’s largest investors, innovative startup entrepreneurs, and cutting-edge project proponents and government agencies to boost investment.
  • The main aim of the forum is to mobilise investments into sustainable infrastructure, climate technology, and renewable energy projects.
  • Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF):
    • It was launched in May 2022.
    • It provides a platform for countries in the region to collaborate on advancing resilient, sustainable, and inclusive economic growth.
    • 14 countries are members of this Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity.
    • Trade, Supply Chain, Clean Economy and Fair Economy are the four pillars of IPEF.

Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market

9. Households’ debt reached to fresh high in December 2023.

  • As per a report, India’s household debt level has touched an all-time high of 40% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in December 2023.
  • The net financial savings had dropped to their lowest level at around 5% of GDP.
  • As per the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) estimate financial savings had dropped to 5.1% of GDP in 2022-23. It has dropped to 47-year low.
  • The first revised estimates of national income for 2022-23 released in February raised the estimated net financial savings in households to 5.3% of GDP.
  • The revised estimates also raised household debt levels to 38% of GDP in 2022-23.
  • As per Bank’s data, unsecured personal loans continue to grow at the fastest pace within household debt. It is followed by secured debt, agricultural loans, and business loans.
  • In the first nine months of 2023, households’ gross financial savings rose to 10.8% of GDP, from 10.5% in the corresponding period of 2022-23.

Topic: World Economy

10. A new gold-backed currency called ZiG has been introduced by Zimbabwe.

  • The meaning of the name ZiG is "Zimbabwe Gold". The new ZiG banknotes will come in denominations between ₹1 and ₹200.
  • Coins would also be introduced to address the shortage of American coins.
  • It is the latest effort to stabilize an economy that has been moving from crisis to crisis for the past 25 years.
  • ZiG replaced the Zimbabwe dollar, RTGS, which has lost three-quarters of its value so far this year.
  • In March, annual inflation reached 55% – a seven-month high.
  • Zimbabweans have 21 days to exchange old, inflation-hit notes for the new currency.
  • However, the US dollar, which accounts for 85% of transactions, will remain legal tender and will continue to be preferred by most people.
  • The new currency is being implemented with immediate effect and banks will be required to convert existing Zimbabwe dollar balances into ZiG.

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