1. Three-day B20 (Business 20) India meet is being held from 22-24 January 2023 in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
- Top business executives from India and other G20 member countries will discuss inclusive growth and global economic priorities at B20 India meet.
- Other 14 meetings will be held in cities including Ahmedabad, Surat, Statue of Unity at Kevadiya, and Dhordo in Kutch.
- The theme for B20 India is RAISE, which is an acronym for Responsible, Accelerated, Innovative, Sustainable and Equitable Businesses.
- Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) has been designated the B20 Secretariat by the government.
- The mandate of B20 is to represent the voice of the international business community on global economic issues.
- Senior representatives and CEOs from the companies including Tata Sons, MasterCard, Bajaj Finserv, Citigroup, Volkswagen, TVS, Amazon Web, HCL and ITC will attend B20 India Inception meeting on January 22-24 hosted by CII.
- Few union ministers, Gujarat CM and India’s G20 Sherpa Amitabh Kant will also take part in the meeting.
- India is holding the rotating G20 presidency for 2023. India will host 18th G20 Summit in September, 2023.
- It is the global forum for the governments and central bank governors that was founded in 1999.
- G20 includes 19 countries and the European Union. There is no permanent secretariat of G20.
Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market
2. Point-to-point inflation rate based on CPI-AL and CPI-RL stood at 6.38% and 6.6%, respectively, in December 2022.
- In November 2022, it stood at 6.87% and 6.99% respectively. In December 2021, it stood at 4.78% and 5.03%, respectively.
- Retail inflation for farm and rural workers eased mainly due to lower prices of certain food items.
- Food inflation stood at 5.89% and 5.76% in December 2022 as against 6.19% and 6.05%, respectively, in November 2022.
- The all-India Consumer Price Index Number for Agricultural Labourers for December 2022 was stationary at 1,167 points.
- The all-India Consumer Price Index Number for Rural Labourers increased by 1 point and stood at 1,179.
- In November 2022, CPI-AL was 1,167 points and CPI-RL was 1,178 points.
- Maximum upward pressure on both indices came from miscellaneous group, primarily because of increase in prices of medicine, barber charges, bus fare, etc.
- The rise/fall in the index varied from state to state. In case of both indices, Tamil Nadu remained at the top whereas Himachal Pradesh stood at the bottom.
- Amongst the states, Rajasthan experienced maximum increase in the CPI-AL. Kerala experienced maximum increase in CPI-RL.
- Manipur experienced maximum decrease in CPI-AL and CPI-RL.
3. SBI General Insurance has entered into partnership with Doers NGO.
- The partnership aims to support the Himachal Pradesh police in lowering the number of road accidents.
- Under its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme, SBI General Insurance has provided a well–equipped ambulance for urgent medical care for road accident victims in Mandi district.
- SBI General has also collaborated with Himachal Pradesh Police to provide road signages to increase awareness in accident prone areas on the highway.
- SBI General Insurance is India’s leading private general insurance company. It is headquartered in Mumbai. Its MD and CEO is Kishore Kumar Poludasu.
Topic: Banking System
4. Bombay High Court has declared RBI order to write off ₹8,300 crore AT-1 bonds of YES Bank as invalid.
- Earlier, administrator of YES Bank has directed write-off of ₹8,300 crore additional tier-I (AT-1) bonds of the bank as part of its reconstruction.
- The Bombay HC has given YES Bank six weeks for the implementation of this order.
- The bank will need to arrange the required funds in this period to make the payments after six weeks.
- Under plan to revive YES Bank, a State Bank of India led consortium of 10 institutional investors has invested ₹10,000 crore in YES Bank.
- RBI had suggested writing off the bonds citing Basel-III norms. The Basel-III norms say that AT1 bonds have no guarantee.
- 63 moons technologies is one of the major bondholders. It had filed a petition against YES Bank, RBI and the administrator.
- Additional Tier-1 (AT-1) bonds:
- They are a type of unsecured bonds.
- AT-1 bonds can be written down or changed into equity if the bank issuing them faces financial difficulty.
- Banks issue AT-1 bonds to support their minimum capital requirements to fulfill Basel-III norms.
Topic: Reports and Indices
5. According to analysis by SBI’s Economic Research Department (ERD), incentives provided by ECLGS has helped in boosting credit flow to MSMEs.
- As per ERD’s analysis, MSME loan account worth ₹2.2 lakh crore improved since launch of Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) for the entire banking industry.
- Nearly 12% of the outstanding MSME credit has been saved from slipping into NPA (non-performing asset) because of the ECLGS.
- According to the report, outstanding loans to MSMEs increased from ₹16 lakh crore in FY20 to ₹18 lakh crore in FY21 and ₹20 lakh crore in FY22.
- The report said that the scheme has saved the livelihoods of about 6.6 crore people (assuming four family members per worker including herself/himself).
- The report says that there is clear evidence that MSME units are becoming larger.
- It notes that several MSME units are crossing the threshold of ₹250 crore turnover.
- It further notes that they are turning mid-sized corporates by the new definition of MSME units.
- In the report, it is estimated that the Udyam Assist Platform (UAP) would provide benefit to up to 5 crore informal micro enterprises (IMEs).
- SIDBI has developed UAP to make it possible for IMEs that are not registered under GST to get a registration certificate from government on the basis of information available with banks/NBFCs.
- Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS):
- Government launched ECLGS in view of Covid-19 crisis. Under it, 100% guarantee is provided to banks and NBFCs to enable them to extend emergency credit facilities to MSMEs/ Business Enterprises to meet their additional term loan/ working capital requirements.
- The MSMEs/ Business Enterprises should be having outstanding loan up to ₹50 crore as on February 29, 2020, and turnover up to ₹250 crore in FY20.
Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market
6. Annual investment of ₹50,000 crore is needed in the Indian insurance sector to double insurance penetration in five years.
- IRDAI Chairman Debashish Panda said this recently at an event organised by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).
- He talked about recently announced Bima Sugam platform, which is proposed to be an insurance marketplace.
- He said India is expected to become the sixth largest insurance market by 2032. It is the 10th largest market at present.
- IRDAI has set target to achieve insurance for all by 2047.
- Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI):
- IRDAI is an autonomous statutory body. It was formed under the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority Act, 1999.
- It regulates and promotes both insurances as well as reinsurance industries in India.
- Chairman of IRDAI: Debashish Panda
- Headquarters: Hyderabad, Telangana
Topic: Banking System
7. Canara Bank has transferred to SBI its entire 40% stake in Commercial Indo Bank LLC (CIBL), Moscow.
- This has come after the bank has entered into a share sale agreement with State Bank of India (SBI) in relation to sale of equity shares held by it in CIBL.
- The entire 40% stake held by Canara Bank was transferred to SBI on November 30, 2022 based on the share sale agreement and with the consent of the Central Bank of Russia.
- The transaction is expected to be completed on or before March-end 2023.
- Commercial Indo Bank LLC (CIBL) is a Joint Venture in Russia between SBI (60%) and Canara Bank (40%).
8. One-time relaxation announced for maintaining average export obligation under EPCG scheme.
- Ministry of Commerce and Industry has announced one-time relaxation from maintaining average export obligation for some sectors under the EPCG scheme.
- These sectors are – Hotel, Healthcare and Educational sectors.
- These sectors are exempted from maintaining average export obligation for the years 2020-21 and 2021-22.
- As per the Ministry’s statement, these sectors will have the option to extend the export obligation period for a longer duration without paying any additional fees.
- With this relaxation, these sectors will be able to cope up with the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The export obligation time can be extended from the date of expiry for the duration equivalent to the number of days the existing export obligation period falls within 1 February 2020 and 31 July 2021, for the EPCG authorizations issued for sectors other than the above mentioned sectors.
- A 5% additional export obligation in value terms on the balance export obligation as on 31 March 2022 has to be paid for this extension.
- Export Promotion Capital Goods (EPCG) scheme:
- The scheme was launched in 1990s.
- The objective of the scheme is to promote import of capital goods for producing quality goods and services and increase manufacturing competitiveness of India.
- The scheme enables import of capital goods for pre-production, production and post-production with zero customs duty.
- These goods are exempted from IGST and Compensation cess upto 31 March 2020.
- It covers manufacturer exporters with or without supporting manufacturers, merchant exporters tied to supporting manufacturers and service providers including Common Service Providers (CSP).
9. The World Economic Forum (WEF) has selected Hyderabad, Telangana to set up a Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (C4IR).
- It will be the first thematic centre in India to focus on life sciences and healthcare.
- Telangana government and World Economic Forum (WEF) have entered into a collaboration agreement at the Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland.
- WEF managing director and Telangana Life Sciences Foundation CEO Shakthi Nagappan signed the agreement in the presence of Telangana Industries and IT Minister K.T. Rama Rao.
- The centre will be an autonomous, non-profit organisation. It will focus on policy and governance for healthcare and life sciences.
- C4IR Telangana is the 18th centre to join the World Economic Forum’s Fourth Industrial Revolution Network.
- C4IR Telangana is the only such centre in India with a thematic focus on healthcare and life sciences.
- Telangana accounts for one-third of global vaccine output. It is considered a leading life sciences hotspot in Asia.
- Telangana contributes about 35% of India’s pharmaceutical production.
- Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, India:
- It was announced on January 23, 2018. It was officially launched in India on October 11, 2018.
- It is located in Mumbai. It serves as a platform for technology governance in the Indian context.
10. Wayanad district in Kerala has become the first district in India to provide basic documents to all tribal people.
- Wayanad district administration has provided 1,42,563 services to as many as 64,670 tribal beneficiaries under the Akshaya Big Campaign for Document Digitisation (ABCD).
- The services include ration cards, Aadhar cards, birth certificates, voters’ identity cards and digital locker facilities.
- The campaign was introduced in November 2021 at Thondarnadu grama panchayat.
- The aim of the campaign is to ensure basic documents to all citizens belonging to the Scheduled Tribes communities.
- These basic documents are digitalised and saved in DigiLocker accounts opened for them.
- In addition to the basic documents, other services such as income certificates, ownership certificates, age certificates, and applications for new pensions are also provided.