Daily Current Affairs 3 April 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
India, Mauritius Free Trade Agreement to Come into Effect from April 1, Says Commerce Ministry
Several Indian products will enjoy the benefit of greater market access at concessional duties in Mauritius as the free trade agreement signed between the two countries will come into effect from April 1,2021.
- The pact covers 310 export items for India, including food and beverages, agricultural products, textile and textile articles, base metals, electricals and electronic item, plastics and chemicals, and wood.
Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray lays foundation stone for Balasaheb Thackeray National Memorial
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray laid the foundation stone for Balasaheb Thackeray National Memorial at Shivaji Park in suburban Dadar.
- The memorial will be built in two phases. While the memorial’s architecture, electrical, interior and exterior decoration of the building, construction of parking lot, gardening and rainwater harvesting etc will be taken care of in the first phase, the second phase will involve putting in place the technological features like a laser show, digital mapping, films, audio-visual, virtual reality etc.
- The memorial’s architectural design has been prepared by the renowned Abha Lamba. The project will be implemented by Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority.
Govt approves over Rs 6,100 crore-worth highway projects
The government approved highway projects worth more than Rs 6,176 crore.
- These projects pertain to seven states and union territories, including Maharashtra, Assam and Ladakh.
- These include Rs 2,801.33 crore-worth projects in Maharashtra and RS 1,259 crore-worth projects in Assam. The projects worth Rs 779 crore have been approved for Ladakh while Rs 810 crore projects have been approved for Andhra Pradesh.
With over 6000 route km, Railways log highest ever figures in Electrification of routes
Indian Railways has logged highest ever electrification of sections covering over six thousand route kilometer in a single year during 2020-21. Despite COVID-19 pandemic, it has surpassed the previous highest of over five thousand route kilometer achieved in 2018-19.
- More than five times electrification was achieved in the last seven years as compared to 2007-14. It has also commissioned a record 56 Traction Sub Stations during 2020-21, as against previous best of 42, which shows an improvement of 33 percent.
Centre to soon roll out Unique Land Parcel Identification Number system in country
Centre will soon roll out a Unique Land Parcel Identification Number system in the country allotting distinct IDs for each land parcel.
- The system has already been successfully carried out in a number of states on pilot basis.
- In the Unique Land Parcel Identification Number System, there will be a unique ID for each land parcel. The unique ID will be of 14 digits. It would be based on the Geo reference coordinate of vertices of the parcel.
BANKING & FINANCE
ICICI Bank, PhonePe tie up for issuance of FASTags
ICICI Bank and digital payment wallet PhonePe have partnered for issuance of FASTag, which facilitates electronic payment of fee at toll plazas.
- Under the partnership, the issuance of FASTag will take place by using UPI on the PhonePe app.
- This integration allows over 28 crore registered PhonePe users to order and track the ICICI Bank FASTag conveniently on the app.
Mastercard to invest about Rs 733 cr in Airtel Africa’s mobile money business
Airtel Africa announced that Mastercard would invest USD 100 million (about ₹733 crore) in its wholly-owned subsidiary Airtel Mobile Commerce BV (AMC BV).
- Mastercard would hold a minority stake in AMC BV on completion of the deal, with Airtel Africa continuing to hold the majority stake.
- AMC BV is currently the holding company for several of Airtel Africa’s mobile money operations and is intended to own and operate the mobile money businesses across all of Airtel Africa’s 14 operating countries.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
Govt Extends Current Foreign Trade Policy Till September Due to Covid-19
The government extended the existing foreign trade policy (FTP) for six more months up to September 30 this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
- FTP provides guidelines for enhancing exports to push economic growth and create jobs.
- The commerce ministry said that in view of the unprecedented situation arising out of the pandemic, which is persisting, the government has decided to continue benefits under various export promotion schemes by extending the existing policy.
India’s projected FY22 growth could weaken to 12.2% from 13.5% if second wave worsens: Nomura
India’s growth in the current fiscal could weaken to 12.2% from the previously forecast 13.5% if the second wave of Covid-19 infections worsen, according to Japanese brokerage Nomura.
- The rapid increase in cases across states could lead to Nomura dialing down its projection of annual growth in the first quarter of this fiscal to 32.5% from the current 34.5%, implying near-zero or marginally negative sequential growth momentum.
- The Nomura India Business Resumption Index (NIBRI) for the week ended March 28, moderated to 94.8 from 95.1 a week earlier, reflecting a plateauing of mobility indicators, the report said.
Power Finance Corporation pays interim dividend of Rs 1,182 crore to government for ’20-’21
Power Finance Corporation, a Navratna Central Public Sector Enterprise under Ministry of Power and India’s leading NBFC for the Power Sector has paid an interim dividend of Rs 1182.63 crore to Government of India for the financial year 2020-21 on March 31st, 2021 on 1,47,82,91,778 number of equity shares (56%) held by the government.
- The interim dividend for FY2020-21at the rate of Rs 8/- per equity share of face value of Rs 10 each was declared by the Board of Directors of PFC in its meeting held on 12th March 2021.
Exports of foreign subsidiaries accounted for 33% of their total sales in FY20: RBI
Exports of foreign subsidiaries in India accounted for 32.6 per cent of their total sales in 2019-20, according to RBI.
- The RBI released the provisional results of the 2019-20 round of the annual census on foreign liabilities and assets (FLA) covering cross-border liabilities and assets of the entities with inward/outward direct investment.
- These entities include companies, limited liability partnership (LLP), alternative investment fund (AIF) and partnership firms.
CBIC extends customs duty and integrated GST exemptions till March 31, 2022
The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) extended the basic customs duty and integrated goods and service tax exemptions for export oriented units, by a year till March 31, 2022.
- The Board also made it mandatory for a GST taxpayer having turnover of more than Rs 5 crore in the preceding financial year,to furnish 6 digits HSN Code on invoices issued for supplies.
- The Board also extended the exemption from integrated tax and compensation cess on goods imported against authorisations under Advance Authorisation and export promotion capital goods (EPCG) schemes, till March 31, 2022.
ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS
Axis Bank to sell UK arm to tech platform
Axis Bank has informed the stock exchanges that it has agreed to sell its UK subsidiary to OpenPayd Holdings.
- The consideration or the value for the transaction would be the completion net asset value (book value of the bank on the date of completion), plus a fixed premium of $5,500,000.
- Axis Bank expects the sale to be completed by September 30, 2021 subject to the approval of ‘Change in Control’, received from the UK Financial Regulator, the PRA.
2023 Men’s Boxing World Championships to be Held in Tashkent
The 2023 men’s boxing World Championships will be held in Uzbekistan capital Tashkent, the International Boxing Association (AIBA) announced.
- The preparation for AIBA Men’s World Boxing Championships has already started and the first plan of arrangements has been launched.
Former RBI Governor Urjit Patel appointed Additional Director of Britannia
The Board of Britannia Industries has appointed former Reserve Bank Governor Urjit Patel as the company’s Additional Director in the category of Non-Executive and Independent Director.
- He has been appointed as the Additional Director with effect from March 31 for a five-year period.
Subhash Kumar takes additional charge as CMD Of ONGC
Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC)’s Director (Finance) Subhash Kumar assumed additional charge as Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) upon the retirement of incumbent Shashi Shanker.
- Kumar took charge upon the superannuation of incumbent CMD, Shashi Shanker on March 31, 2021
Andhra Pradesh Governor Biswabhusan Harichandan receives Kalinga Ratna award
Andhra Pradesh Governor Biswa Bhusan Harichandan has been conferred the ‘Kalinga Ratna’ award for the year 2021.
- The award instituted by Sarala Sahitya Sansad was presented to Governor Biswa Bhusan Harichandan by M. Venkaiah Naidu, Vice President of India, during the 600th Birth Anniversary of Adikabi Sarala Das and 40th Annual Celebrations of Sarala Sahitya Sansad during the programme held at Sarala Bhawan in Cuttack.
- The Kalinga Ratna award carried a silver statue of Goddess Saraswati and a copper plaque.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
India’s biggest floating solar power plant to be set up at Ramagundam in Telangana
India’s biggest floating solar power plant with a capacity of 100 MW will be set up at Ramagundam in Telangana.
- The project expected to be opened in May, is being set up at Ramagundam thermal power plant reservoir.
- The solar project is commissioned by the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC). The project, which is estimated to cost around 423 crore rupees, will have 4.5 lakh photovoltaic panels.
Amboli in Maharashtra named as Biodiversity Heritage Site
The Maharashtra government declared an area at Amboli in Western ghats in Sindhudurg district, where a rare freshwater fish species was discovered, as a biodiversity heritage site.
- Schistura Hiranyakeshi is a rare sub-species of Schistura, a freshwater loach. The fish was named after the Hiranyakeshi river near Amboli village.
- Schistura is a small and colourful fish that lives in water and streams in an abundance of oxygen
World Autism Awareness Day
Workd Autism Awareness Day is observed on April 2, every year to makes people understand and accept people with autism, foster worldwide support, and inspire people. It is a day that spread kindness and autism awareness.
- This year, the theme is ‘Inclusion in the Workplace: Challenges and Opportunities in a Post-Pandemic World’.
International Children’s Book Day
International Children’s Book Day (ICBD)an annual celebration of the birthday of Danish author and poet, Hans Christian Andersen every 2nd day of April to inspire a love of reading and to call attention to children’s books.
- The theme of International Children’s Book Day 2021 is “The Music of Words.”