Commerce Ministry Current Affairs

5 States, 1 UT ink MoU with Centre on Government e-Marketplace

5 States and a Union Territory (UT) have formally adopted the Centre’s Government e-Marketplace (GeM) initiative. They are Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat, Telangana, Arunachal Pradesh and Puducherry (UT).

In this regard, these states/UT have signed memorandum of understanding (MoU) to join GeM initiative. Four more states including Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand and Haryana, will ink such MoU soon.

About Government e-Marketplace (GeM) initiative

GeM is an Online Market platform to facilitate procurement of goods and services by various Ministries and agencies of the Government. It aims to enhance transparency, efficiency and speed in public procurement of goods and services and eliminate corruption. It functions under Directorate General of Supplies and Disposals (DGS&D), Union Ministry of Commerce and Industries.

GeM is a completely paperless, cashless and system driven e-market place that enables procurement of common use goods and services with minimal human interface. Presently more than 40000 products in about 150 categories and hiring of transport service are available on GeM POC portal.

Benefits of GeM

Transparency: GeM to a great extent eliminates human interface in order placement, vendor registration and payment processing. It is open platform and does not offer no entry barriers to bonafide suppliers who wish to do business with the Government. For procurements of higher value, GeM has bidding facility.

Efficiency: GeM allows direct purchase on it in a matter of minutes. The entire process in online, end to end integrated. It has online tools for assessing price reasonability.

Secure and safe: GeM platform is a completely secure. The antecedents of the suppliers are verified online and automatically through Aadhar, PAN databases. Besides, all the documents on GeM are e-signed at various stages by the buyers and sellers.

Support to Make in India: GeM has filters which are Preferential Market Access (PMA) compliant for selecting goods which are manufactured by Small Scale Industries (SSI). Thus, it will enable Government buyers to easily procure Make in India and SSI goods.

Savings to the Government: Transparency, efficiency under GeM initiative will result in a substantial reduction in prices of procuring goods, in comparison to the direct purchase rates and purchases by tender and rate contract.

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Union Commerce Ministry approves Revenue Insurance Scheme for Plantation Crops  

The Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry has launched pilot Revenue Insurance Scheme for Plantation Crops (RISPC) for protecting the growers from the risks such as pest attacks, yield loss and income decline caused by fall in prices.

It was announced by Union Minister of State (MoS) Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.

About Revenue Insurance Scheme for Plantation Crops (RISPC)

  • RISPC announced in September 2016 is improved form of the Price Stabilization Fund (PSF) Scheme, 2003 which was closed 2013.
  • It was launched for protecting growers of plantation crops from twin risks of yield loss due to pest attacks, adverse weather parameters etc. and income loss caused by fall in domestic and international prices.
  • It shall be covering tea, coffee, rubber, cardamom and tobacco plantations and shall be implemented by the commodity boards.
  • It will be implemented on a pilot basis for two years i.e. till 2018 in eight districts in West Bengal, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Karnataka, Sikkim and Tamil Nadu.
  • On the basis of performance of the scheme in pilot project, it will be considered for extension to other districts.

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