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World Food Prize 2014 to India-born scientist Sanjaya Rajaram

Sanjaya Rajaram, an India-born plant scientist, has been chosen for the World Food Prize 2014 for scientific research that led to a stupendous increase in world wheat production.

However, farm activists in the country criticised the prize as mere a public relations stunt by big agri-food companies who fund it.

Sanjaya Rajaram, a citizen of Mexico, took over Nobel Laureate Norman Borlaug as head of the wheat breeding program at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) in Mexico, where he worked for 33 years. The World Food Prize acknowledges his contribution to the breeding technologies which have made significant impact in providing more nutritious food around the world and assuaging world hunger.

International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center 

Commonly called by its Spanish acronym CIMMYT (Centro Internacional de Mejoramiento de Maíz y Trigo) is a non-profit research and training institution dedicated to both the development of improved varieties of wheat and maize, and introducing better agricultural practices to farmers, thus bettering their livelihoods.

CIMMYT is one of the 15 non-profit, research and training institutions affiliated with the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR).

World Bank to double its lending to developing nations

As part of its efforts to end extreme poverty by 2030, the World Bank Group declared that it will almost double yearly lending capacity to emerging nations like Brazil, China, India, etc. from USD 15 billion to USD 28 billion. In next decade, the WB it would be increasing its lending capacity by USD 100 billion to USD 300 billion for middle income nations.

IBRD  (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development) has increased its single borrower limit by $2.5 billion for Brazil, China, Indonesia, India, and Mexico.

‘World Market Power’ Index: India 2nd most powerful nation

Multinational Spanish banking outfit Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria, as part of its research project on Emerging and Growth-Leading Economies issued the ‘World Market Power’ Index. As per this Index, India is the second most powerful nation, when it comes to competing on the world market. The Index tracks nations’ abilities on the economic front.

China topped the ‘World Market Power’ Index list followed by India, Indonesia, Brazil, Russia, Turkey and Mexico.

Forbes’s 2014 billionaires list: Bill Gates reclaims title as world’s richest person

Screenshot_5Microsoft Co-founder, Mr. Bill Gates regained the title of the world’s richest person in the Forbes 2014 billionaire list. Mr. Gates has topped the list for 15 of the last 20 years, with a net worth of $76 billion and Mexico’s telecommunications mogul Mr. Carlos Slim Helu is at second place.

As per the Forbes’ 28th annual ranking of the world’s billionaires 2014

The US leads the list of billionaires in the world with 492 billionaires, followed by China (152) and Russia (111). The list has new billionaires from Algeria, Lithuania, Tanzania and Uganda.
Total number of billionaires in the world: 1,645 with combined net worth of $6.4 trillion.
Top 5 billionaires: Mr. Bill Gates, Mr. Carlos Slim Helu, Mr. Amancio Ortega, Mr. Warren Buffett, and Mr. Larry Ellison (Oracle Corp chief).

  • Highest ranked women on the list: Christy Walton (9), with a net worth of $36.7 billion and Liliane Bettencourt (11) has worth $34.5 billion.
  • World’s youngest billionaire: Ms. Perenna Kei from Hong Kong.
  • WhatsApp founders Jan Koum and Brian Acton join the ranks of Silicon Valley’s wealthiest for the first time.
  • From Internet field: Facebook Inc founder Mark Zuckerberg (21), Inc’s Jeff Bezos (18) and Google Inc founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin ranked 17th and 19th.
  • Business Tycoon, Mr. Mukesh Amabani: India’s richest person for the 7th year in a row. Mr. Ambani is ranked 40th globally with net worth of $18.6 billion.
  • India has 56 billionaires in all with a collective net worth of $191.5 billion. 

Note: The Forbes list of billionaires is an annual ranking of the world’s wealthiest people, compiled and published by the American business magazine Forbes. The list only represents each person’s valuation on a single day, due to daily fluctuations among exchange rates and stock valuations.