Current Affairs – August 2016

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Union Cabinet approves creation of PDF to catalyse Indian economic presence in CLMV countries

The Union Cabinet has given its approval to create a Project Development Fund (PDF) for catalysing Indian economic presence in the CLMV countries viz. Cambodia, Laos Myanmar and Vietnam.

The PDF will have corpus of Rs 500 Crore and shall be housed in Department of Commerce. It will be operated through the EXIM Bank.

Key Facts

  • The PDF will be governed by an Inter-Ministerial Committee under the chairpersonship of the Commerce Secretary.
  • It will benefit India’s industrial community for business expansion in the CLMV countries.
  • Besides it will also help to maintain cost competitive supply chains, besides integrating with global production networks.

Background

  • CLMV countries namely Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam have a unique position in the regional value chains in Southeast Asia region.
  • These countries offer a gateway for market access to China, European Union and other markets due to various trade agreements.

Comment

  • Thus, creation of Project Development Fund (PDF) will give key advantage position to India in securing regional value chains on a long term basis.
  • Besides, it will provide a dedicated market for Indian raw materials and intermediate goods and also a dedicated source of raw materials for Indian industry.

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Cabinet approves dissolution of Central Inland Water Transport Corporation Limited

The Union Cabinet has given its approval to proposal for dissolution of Central Inland Water Transport Corporation Limited (CIWTC).

CIWTC was incorporated in February 1967 as Public Sector Undertaking under the Companies Act 1956 by the Central Government. It was under the administrative control of Ministry of Shipping (MOS).

It had taken over the assets and liabilities of the erstwhile River Steam Navigation Company Limited (RSNCL) under a scheme approved by the Calcutta High Court.

Why Government is closing CIWTC?

  • Since its inception CIWTC was incurring losses due to inherent limitation and infrastructure bottle necks and never could become viable company.
  • Central Government is closing it in line with its decision to revitalize sick CPSUs wherever possible or to wind up irretrievable cases.
  • The dissolution of the CIWTC would be initiated after disposal of movable and immovable assets. This would free up the assets for better utilization and for the benefit of the people.
  • A number of assets have been taken up by Inland Waterways Authority of India to provide services on National Waterway 4 on Brahmputra River.

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Union Cabinet apprises MoU between CERT-In and CERT-UK

The Union Cabinet has apprised the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) and CERT-UK.

The MoU was signed between CERT-In and Ministry of Cabinet Office, UK (United Kingdom) represented by CERT-UK, a unit of the Cabinet Office on Cyber Security in May 2016.

Key Facts

  • The MoU intends to promote closer cooperation between India and UK for exchange of knowledge and experience in detection, resolution and prevention of security-related incidents.
  • It will facilitate both countries to exchange technical information on Cyber-attacks, response to cyber security incidents and find solutions to counter the cyber-attacks.
  • They can also exchange information on prevalent cyber security policies and best practices.
  • This MoU helps to strengthen cyber space of both countries in terms of capacity building and improving relationship between them.

Background

  • Cyber Security was one of the agenda items for discussion during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to UK in November, 2015.
  • Earlier CERT-In signed MoUs with similar organizations of seven countries viz. South Korea, Canada, Malaysia, Australia, Singapore, Japan and Uzbekistan.
  • Besides, Union Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has also signed MoU with Cyber Security as one of the areas of cooperation with Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

About Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In)

  • CERT-In is nodal government agency that deals with cyber security threats like hacking and phishing in India.
  • It is nodal department under the aegis of Union Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.
  • Headquarters: New Delhi.
  • Objective: (i) Protect Indian cyberspace and software infrastructure against destructive and hacking activities. (ii) Strengthen security-related defence of the Indian Internet domain. Issue guidelines, vulnerability notes, advisories, and whitepapers regarding to information security practices, prevention,procedures, response and reporting of cyber security incidents.

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