Banking Awareness of 16, 17 and 18 March 2024

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 18 Mar 2024 17:12 PM IST
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Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market

1. In February 2024, India's goods exports increased 11.86 percent year over year to $41.4 billion.

  • Thus far in the current fiscal year, this is the largest monthly export.
  • Industries including engineering items, electronics, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and petroleum products have been the main drivers of exports.
  • Despite unfavorable circumstances including the disturbances in the Red Sea, the recession of Western economies, and the decline in commodity prices, exports have increased.
  • In February 2024, the value of goods imported increased by 12.16% to $60.11 billion.
  • According to preliminary estimates provided by the government, this has caused the trade deficit to increase from $16.67 billion in February 2023 to $18.7 billion in February 2024.
  • The Houthis, who are supported by Iran, are attacking shipments in the Red Sea.
  • India's goods exports rose by 6.89% in 2022–2023 to $451.07 billion.
  • The value of goods exported during the April–February 2023–24 period was $394.99 billion.
  • In comparison to the $409.11 billion worth exports from April to February of 2022–2023, they decreased by 3.45%.
  • With $620.19 billion worth imports, merchandise imports during April-February 2023–2024 were 5.32% less than those during April–February 2022–2023.
  • Between April and February of 2023–2024, the merchandise trade deficit stood at $225.20 billion.
  • This was less than the $245.94 billion deficit from April to February in 2022–2023.
  • In February 2024, exports from 22 of the 30 major sectors increased.
  • Handicrafts, coffee, tea, meat, iron ore, plastic, yarn, textiles, ceramic goods, and glassware were among the items exported.
  • Imports of commodities like gold, electronics, machine tools, iron and steel, non-ferrous metals, and chemicals have increased as of February 2024.
  • The US, the UAE, Singapore, South Africa, the Netherlands, Saudi Arab, the UK, China and Bangladesh were the top export destinations for India in February 2024.
  • Switzerland, UAE, China, Indonesia, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and South Korea were the top import sources in February 2024.

Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market

2. Kerala’s MSME sector has added more than one lakh ventures for 2nd consecutive years in 2023-24.

  • This has increased the total number newly established units to 2, 40,396 since the launch of the Year of Enterprises initiative in 2022-23.
  • Ernakulam district has the largest number of units. It is followed by Malappuram and Thiruvananthapuram.
  • Out of the total units started under the initiative, maximum are in the service sector. It is followed by commercial enterprises sector and manufacturing sector.
  • The initiative yielded investment of ₹15,167.36 crore in the MSME sector in the last two years.
  • The initiative created 5,09,740 jobs in the MSME sector in the last two years.
  • In 2022-23, the initiative had led to an investment of ₹8,422 crore and created 30051 jobs.
  • The initiative had led to investment of ₹6,745.36 crore and created 2,10,776 jobs in 2023-24 (till March 15).
  • 2022-23 was declared as Year of Enterprises and a target of creating at least one lakh new enterprises and 3 to 4 lakh jobs have been set up.
  • Department of Industries & Commerce (DI&C) with the co-operation of Local Administration, Co-operation, Fisheries and Animal Husbandry departments had launched the project.

Topic: Reports and Indices

3. According to a report of CII, startups could contribute to $1 trillion to Indian economy by the year 2030.

  • This is likely to add 50 million new jobs to the Indian economy as per the report.
  • The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) report is titled ‘Unicorn 2.0: Adding the Next Trillion’.
  • It was released at the CII Unicorn Summit in New Delhi.
  • It was prepared with McKinsey and Company as the knowledge partner.
  • According to the report, India’s 100-plus unicorns and about 1 lakh start-ups have added 10 to 15% to GDP growth between 2016 and 2023.
  • In India, first unicorn was seen in 2011. As of January 2014, the combined valuation of 113 unicorns is $350 billion.
  • Between 2014 and 2023, India’s startup ecosystem has seen investment of $140 billion in venture capital funding.
  • India’s present startup ecosystem has created more than 12-13 million new jobs.
  • Women form nearly 35% of the workforce in Indian startups.
  • CII report highlights economic progress and the societal transformation catalyzed by startups across various sectors.

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Topic: Taxation  

4. Anti-dumping duty has been imposed on Cast Aluminium Alloy Wheels or Alloy Road Wheels (ARW) imports from China.

  • Finance Ministry has imposed anti-dumping duty on these items for a period of five years.
  • The anti-dumping duty ranges from $ 0.23 per kg to $ 1.71 per kg. It depends on the producer from China.
  • In January 2024, the Director General of Trade Remedies recommended that definitive anti-dumping duty should be imposed on ARW imports from China.
  • Government first imposed anti-dumping duty on ARW in May 2015.
  • It was twice extended, first in 2019 and then again in 2022. The current duties are about to expire on 8 April 2024.  

Topic: Appointments

5. Jaideep Hansraj has been appointed as President of One Kotak.

  • Kotak Mahindra Bank has appointed him as Group President of One Kotak.
  • His appointment is with effect from April 1, 2024. He is Kotak Securities MD and CEO.
  • Shripal Shah will take over from him as the head of Kotak Securities.
  • Shripal Shah is President and COO at Kotak Securities.
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Topic: Miscellaneous

6. On 15 March, a new EV policy approved by the Indian Government to boost Tesla's market entry plans.

  • In the new EV policy, the government's focus will be on domestic EV manufacturing.
  • The policy is also designed to attract investments in the e-vehicle sector by reputed global EV manufacturers.
  • Under the policy, a company will have to invest a minimum of Rs 4150 crore and there is no maximum limit on investment.
  • The company will have to start its plant in 3 years.
  • Within 5 years, the company also has to reach 50% domestic value addition (DVA).
  • To increase domestic value addition (DVA) during manufacturing, the government aims to achieve a localization level of 25% by the third year and 50% by the fifth year.
  • Customs duty of 15% (as applicable to CKD units) will be applicable on vehicles with a minimum CIF value of US$ 35,000 and above for a total period of 5 years.
  • This will require the manufacturer to set up manufacturing facilities in India within a period of 3 years.
  • If Tesla comes, first a plant will have to be set up, and then production will start.
  • The bank guarantee of the companies will be returned once 50% DVA is reached.

Topic: Reports and Indices

7. India ranked 134th in Global Human Development Index: Human Development Report 2023/24

  • India’s rank on the UN Human Development Index (HDI) has improved by one place in 2022 to 134 out of 193 countries, compared to 135 in 2021.
  • The data has been taken from the United Nations Development Programme’s report titled “Breaking the Gridlock: Reimagining Cooperation in a Polarized World”.
  • India’s HDI value has increased to 0.644 in 2022. It was 0.633 in 2021.
  • India’s showed improvement across all HDI indicators in 2022. India’s GII value of 0.437 is better than the global average of 0.462 and the South Asian average of 0.478.
  • Life expectancy rose from 67.2 to 67.7 years, expected years of schooling reached 12.6, mean years of schooling increased to 6.57 and GNI per capita increased from USD 6,542 to USD 6,951.
  • Switzerland is in the top position in the global Human Development Index. Norway and Iceland have been in second and third spots, respectively.
  • India, Bhutan, and Bangladesh have been kept in the Medium Human Development category.
  • China has moved up three ranks, while Sri Lanka has dropped five spots.
  • Nepal (146) and Pakistan (164) have been ranked lower than India.
  • The HDI is a composite index computed based on three parameters: life expectancy, mean years of schooling, and average income.

Topic: Reports and Indices

8. India’s rank in Gender Inequality Index has increased significantly by 14 places.

  • India has recorded a significant increase of 14 ranks in Gender Inequality Index 2022.
  • UNDP has released the Human Development Report 2023-24.
  • According to the report, India ranked at 108 out of 193 countries with a score of 0.437 in GII 2022.
  • This is an increase of 14 ranks in comparison to the GII 2021 rank.
  • In GII 2021, India was ranked 122 out of 191 countries with a score of 0.490.
  • India’s rank in GII has consistently improved over the last 10 years. In 2014, India’s rank was 127.  
  • However, India has one of the largest gender gaps in its labour force participation rate.
  • It has 47.8% difference between women (28.3%) and men (76.1%).
  • Gender Inequality Index:
    • The GII is an index that uses three dimensions to measure gender inequality.
    • These three dimensions are the labor market, empowerment, and reproductive health.
    • A smaller gender gap is indicated by a lower GII score, whereas a larger gender difference is indicated by a higher score.

Topic: Miscellaneous

9. Election Commission released electoral bond data on its website.

  • The Election Commission uploaded the data on electoral bonds to its website.
  • The data was provided by the State Bank of India on March 12th, after a directive from the Supreme Court.
  • As per the data, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) received electoral bonds worth ₹6,060 crore from April 12, 2019 to January 24, 2024.
  • The Trinamool Congress encashed bonds worth ₹1,609 crore. Congress came in third with ₹1,422 crore.
  • The Biju Janata Dal got ₹775 crore, the DMK ₹639 crore, and the AIADMK ₹6.05 crore.
  • Aam Aadmi Party received ₹66 crore through electoral bonds, while Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) encashment stood at ₹1,214 crore.
  • Future Gaming and Hotel Services, with ₹1,368 crore, remain the top donors through electoral bonds.
  • Megha Engineering and Infrastructure Ltd. and Qwik Supply Chain purchased electoral bonds worth ₹966 crore and ₹410 crore, respectively.
  • Electoral bond scheme was launched in 2017. This scheme allowed individuals and corporate entities to contribute unlimited funds to political parties through Electoral bonds.
  • These bonds can be purchased from the State Bank of India (SBI).

Topic: Appointments

10. Gyanesh Kumar and Sukhbir Singh Sandhu have been selected as new election commissioners.

  • Sukhbir Singh Sandhu and Gyanesh Kumar have been selected as new election commissioners by a PM-Modi-led committee.
  • The committee comprised Prime Minister Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, and the leader of the Indian National Congress in Lok Sabha, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury.
  • Utpal Kumar Singh, Pradeep Kumar Tripathi, Gyanesh Kumar, Indevar Pandey, Sukhbir Singh Sandhu, and Sudhir Kumar Gangadhar Rahate were shortlisted for the post.
  • These posts were vacant after the resignation of Arun Goyal on March 10 and Anup Chandra Pandey's retirement on February 15.
  • The election commissioners are appointed by the president upon the recommendation of a committee led by the Prime Minister.   


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