Current Affairs 14 May 2020
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Banking & Economy News
Finance Minister announces measures for relief and credit support to support Indian Economy’s fight against COVID-19 (May 13, 2020)
In continuation to PM Modi’s announcement of Rs 20 lakh crore boost to the economy, the Finance Minister of India, Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman has made certain announcements for relief and credit support related to businesses, especially MSMEs to support the Indian Economy’s fight against COVID-19. These are the announcements made on May 13, 2020. More such announcements will follow. These are mentioned below:
The Economic Package is called Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan.
The announced measures focused on Getting back to work i.e., enabling employees and employers, businesses, especially Micro Small and Medium Enterprises, to get back to production and workers back to gainful employment.
- Rs 3 lakh crore Emergency Working Capital Facility for Businesses, including MSMEs- This will be available to units with upto Rs 25 crore outstanding and turnover of up to Rs 100 crore whose accounts are standard.
- Rs 20,000 crore Subordinate Debt for Stressed MSMEs- Provision made for Rs. 20,000 cr subordinate debt for two lakh MSMEs which are NPA or are stressed. Government will support them with Rs. 4,000 Cr. to Credit Guarantee Trust for Micro and Small enterprises (CGTMSE). Banks are expected to provide the subordinate-debt to promoters of such MSMEs equal to 15% of his existing stake in the unit subject to a maximum of Rs 75 lakhs.
- Rs 50,000 crores equity infusion through MSME Fund of Funds- Govt will set up a Fund of Funds with a corpus of Rs 10,000 crore that will provide equity funding support for MSMEs. The Fund of Funds shall be operated through a Mother and a few Daughter funds.
- New definition of MSME- Definition of MSME will be revised by raising the Investment limit. Additional criteria of turnover also being introduced.
- MSME receivables from Government and CPSEs will be released in 45 days
- Employees Provident Fund Support for business and organised workers- The scheme introduced as part of PMGKP under which Government of India contributes 12% of salary each on behalf of both employer and employee to EPF will be extended by another 3 months for salary months of June, July and August 2020. Total benefits accrued is about Rs 2500 crores to 72.22 lakh employees.
- EPF Contribution to be reduced for Employers and Employees for 3 months- Statutory PF contribution of both employer and employee reduced to 10% each from existing 12% each for all establishments covered by EPFO for next 3 months. This will provide liquidity of about Rs.2250 Crore per month.
- Rs 30,000 crores Special Liquidity Scheme for NBFC/HFC/MFIs- Government will launch Rs 30,000 crore Special Liquidity Scheme, liquidity being provided by RBI. This will be 100 percent guaranteed by the Government of India.
- Rs 45,000 crores Partial credit guarantee Scheme 2.0 for Liabilities of NBFCs/MFIs- Existing Partial Credit Guarantee scheme is being revamped and now will be extended to cover the borrowings of lower rated NBFCs, HFCs and other Micro Finance Institutions (MFIs). Government of India will provide 20 percent first loss sovereign guarantee to Public Sector Banks.
- Rs 90,000 crore Liquidity Injection for DISCOMs- Power Finance Corporation and Rural Electrification Corporation will infuse liquidity in the DISCOMS to the extent of Rs 90000 crores in two equal instalments. This amount will be used by DISCOMS to pay their dues to Transmission and Generation companies. Further, CPSE GENCOs will give a rebate to DISCOMS on the condition that the same is passed on to the final consumers as a relief towards their fixed charges.
- Tax related measures- The due date of all Income Tax Returns for Assessment Year 2020-21 will be extended to 30 November, 2020.
- The TDS rates for all non-salaried payment to residents, and tax collected at source rate will be reduced by 25 percent of the specified rates for the remaining period of FY 20-21.This will provided liquidity to the tune of Rs 50,000 Crore.
- The date for making payment without additional amount under the “Vivad Se Vishwas” scheme will be extended to 31 December, 2020.
New Development Bank provides USD 1 billion loan to India to fight COVID-19
- The New Development Bank of the BRICS countries has disbursed USD 1 billion loan to India to fight COVID-19.
- The ‘Emergency Assistance Program Loan’ to India was approved by the NDB Board of Directors on April 30.
Centre sets up new body to promote rice exports- Rice Export Promotion Forum (REPF)
- The Central Government has set up a new body – Rice Export Promotion Forum (REPF), under the aegis of the Agricultural and Processed Foods Export Promotion Development Authority (Apeda) to promote rice export.
- REPF will monitor, identify and anticipate developments pertaining to production and exports and recommend necessary policy measures.
- India is the second largest produce of rice in the world.
Uttarakhand CM launches HOPE portal to help unemployed youth get jobs
- Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat has launched a portal named ‘HOPE’ – Helping Out People Everywhere, aimed at creating employment opportunities for the trained youths of the state.
- The portal will also offer them skill development opportunities to increase their employability. The HOPE portal has begun collecting data on the youths staying in the state as well as migrant youths who have returned recently from outside.
- Once the database of HOPE portal is ready, the portal will be linked with the Mukhya Mantri Swarojgar Yojana.
Jharkhand’s Sohrai Khovar painting and Telangana’s Puttapaka Telia Rumal gets GI Tag
- The Sohrai Khovar painting from Jharkhand and Puttapaka Telia Rumal from Telangana have been given the Geographical Indication (GI) tag in Handicraft category on 12 May 2020 by the Geographical Indications Registry headquartered in Chennai.
- Sohrai Khovar Painting
- It is a type of traditional and ritualistic mural art, practised by local tribal women during local harvest and marriage seasons, using local, naturally available soils of different colours.
- The style of painting features a profusion of lines, dots, animal figures and plants, often representing religious iconography, painted directly on walls, ceiling or other permanent surfaces.
- Puttapaka Telia Rumal
- Telia Rumal cloth is an intricate handmade work with cotton loom displaying a variety of designs and motifs in three particular colours, red, black and white.
- It can only be created using the traditional handloom process and not by any other mechanical means otherwise the very quality of the Rumal would be lost.
India ranked 74th on WEF’s global energy transition index; Top- Sweden
- India has been ranked at 74th position on the Global ‘Energy Transition Index’ by the World Economic Forum (WEF).
- Sweden has topped the Energy Transition Index (ETI). Switzerland and Finland are on second and third rank respectively.
- The Energy Transition Index (ETI) is a fact-based ranking intended to enable policy-makers and businesses to plot the course for a successful energy transition.
Manoj Ahuja Appointed as new Chairperson of CBSE
- Manoj Ahuja, a 1990 batch IAS officer of Odisha cadre, has been appointed as the new chairperson of the Central Board of Secondary Examination (CBSE).
- Before this, he was serving as special director at Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration.
- He replaces Anita Karwal who has been appointed as the secretary at the Department of School Education and Literacy.