Banking, Financial and Economic Awareness

2020-07-09

1. Rs 12,450 crore recapitalization of OICL, NICL and UIICL approved

  • Rs 12,450 crore recapitalization of Oriental Insurance Company Ltd (OICL), National Insurance Company Limited (NICL) and United India Insurance Company Limited (UIICL) has been approved by the Union Cabinet.
  • All of these are general insurance companies owned by state and their merger was proposed earlier.
  • But, government has now decided to infuse capital and focus on their solvency and profitability.
  • The proposed merger was approved by boards of these companies in January, 2020.
  • Earlier, government has infused Rs 2,500 crore in February. This is included in Rs 12,450 crore.
  • The cabinet has also given approval for increasing authorised share capital of UICL and OICL to Rs 5,000 crore each and that of NICL to Rs 7,500 crore.
  • Oriental Insurance Company Ltd (OICL) was formed in 1947. It is Oriental Government Security Life Assurance Company Ltd's 100% owned subsidiary. It is headquartered in New Delhi.
  • National Insurance Company Limited (NICL) was founded in 1906. It is headquartered in Kolkata.  
  • United India Insurance Company Limited (UIICL) was founded in 1938. It is headquartered in Chennai.

2. SC cancels its order giving 10 more days to automobile dealers

  • Supreme Court has cancelled its March 27 order giving 10 more days to automobile dealers for selling 10% of their stock of BS-IV compliant vehicles.
  • The court has given ten more days immediately after removal of lockdown as it was enforced suddenly.
  • BS-IV compliant vehicles have been banned since April 1. BS-IV norms were in force since April 2017.
  • Government has decided to directly switch to BS-VI norms. BS standards were introduced in 2000.
  • BS-VI norms lower Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) content in petrol from 0.08 g/km to 0.06 g/km. They lower Sulphur content from 50 ppm to 10 ppm.

3. Rs 1 lakh crore scheme approved for agricultural infrastructure

  • Union cabinet has approved Rs 1 lakh crore worth scheme for investment in post harvest management infrastructure and community farming.
  • The approved scheme is sponsored by central government and aims to supply medium to long term financing facility for investment in agriculture infrastructure.
  • As of now, about 20% of India's agricultural produce is wasted in post-harvest losses.
  • The cabinet has also taken several other decisions. One of them is development of affordable rental housing complexes (ARHCs).
  • The ARHCs will be developed for migrants and poor. They will be developed as a sub-scheme under PM Awas Yojana-Urban.
  • The cabinet has also given approval to extend PM Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana till November.
  • It has also approved extension of time for free LPG cylinders under Ujjwala scheme till September.
  • It has also taken decision to contribute 24% EPF to small industries with less than 100 staff for three more months.

4. Collaboration between Microsoft and NSDC

  • Microsoft and National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) have entered into partnership to train India's youths in digital skills.
  • Under the partnership, Microsoft Learn will be linked with NSDC’s eSkill India portal. Microsoft Learn is the learning resource centre from Microsoft. 
  • E-skilling events will be co-hosted by eSkill India and Microsoft Learn.
  • National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC):
    • It was founded in 2008.
    • It is a not-for-profit public limited company.
    • It was formed under Public Private Partnership (PPP) model. Government owns its 49% share capital and remaining 51% is owned by private sector.

5. One lakh more telecom towers needed in India

  • As per Tower & Infrastructure Providers Association (TAIPA), one lakh more telecom towers are needed in India.
  • Currently, number of telecom towers in India stands at 5.93 lakh.
  • India also needs to implement Right of the Way (RoW) policy to provide quality services to over 1 billion telecom subscribers.
  • RoW rules were framed in November 2016. They are focussed on approvals for establishment of towers. They also focus on settling disputes in a time-bound manner.
  • TAIPA also wants immediate implementation of Enhancement of Scope of Infrastructure Providers (IP-I) policy. It was announced in March 2020. It allows infrastructure sharing.

6. Partnership between USAID and MNRE

  • Partnership between US Agency for International Development (USAID) and Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) will increase US-India collaboration for development of clean energy.
  • The partnership involves South Asia Group for Energy (SAGE) supported by USAID and National Technical Institutions of MNRE.
  • The partnership was announced on the sidelines of continuing US-India Strategic Energy Partnership (SEP) meetings.
  • Under the partnership, SAGE will work towards Asia Enhancing Growth and Development through Energy (Asia EDGE) initiative of US government.
  • SAGE consists of USAID, US Department of Energy and its three national laboratories.
  • MNRE is supported by three technical autonomous bodies. They are National Institute of Solar Energy, National Institute of Wind Energy and National Institute of Bio Energy.

 

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