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Key announcements of PM Narendra Modi’s new year eve’s speech

Following the tough decision to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today thanked citizens for undertaking sacrifice to cleanse the economy of black money.

In his address, he announced a number of welfare sops to help the poor, the rural sector, small businesses and other citizens to lighten the burden of demonetization. 

Some of the few announcements are
  • Rural and Urban Housing for poor: PM announced two new housing schemes for the urban poor. Under Pradhan Mantri Aawaz Yojana (PMAY), the poor and middle class in cities will get 4% exemption on interest for home loans up to Rs 9 lakh and 3% exemption for home loans up to Rs 12 lakh.
  • Under PMAY, 33% more houses will be built in villages. Home loans up to Rs 2 lakh will get 3% exemptions for building a new house and also for renovation in villages.
  • Farmers: 3 crore Kisan credit cards will be converted into RuPay cards in coming 3 months. Government will bear 60 days interest on select farm loans.
  • Government will add Rs 20,000 crore more to fund created by NABARD of Rs 21000 crore for giving loans to cooperative banks and societies at low interest rate.
  • Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME): To give boost to the small entrepreneurs credit guarantee for small businesses doubled to Rs 2 crore.
  • Banks have been asked to raise cash credit limit for small business to 25% from 20%. Banks also have been asked to increase working capital loans from 20% of turnover to 30% for enterprises that transact digitally.
  • Women and elderly: Pregnant women and lactating women in above 650 rural districts will get Rs 6,000 in bank accounts to meet medical expenses and reduce child, woman mortality.
  • Senior citizens will get guarantee of 8% interest rate on deposits up to Rs 7.5 lakh for 10 years.

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6th Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Housing and Urban Development begins in New Delhi

The sixth edition of Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Housing and Urban Development (APMCHUD) began in New Delhi. It was inaugurated by Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu.

The three days conference seeks to address issues ranging from crowded city centres to peripheral expansion, metropolitan based urban population growth, megacities and urban corridors etc.

Key Facts
  • In this conference ministers and senior officials from 68 countries in the Asia-Pacific region are expected to deliberate on challenges of urban planning and management.
  • It will adopt Delhi Declaration and implementation plan for aligning urban development strategies of member countries with New Urban Agenda adopted at Quito, Eucador.
  • During the conference, five working groups will deliberate on different sub-themes like Integrated Planning, Management and Governance Structures.
  • They will also be ensuring sustainable and natural disaster resilient urban development including climate change.
  • The conference assumes significance considering that Asia Pacific Region accounts for 60% of the world population and 55% of global urban population. 

About New Urban Agenda

  • It was adopted at the UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (also known as “Habitat III” conference) held in Quito, Ecuador.
  • It sets the global vision of sustainable urbanization for the next 20 years. It is a set of 175 commitments that countries need to adhere to tackle challenges of urbanization.
  • It is considered as roadmap for building cities that can serve as engines of prosperity and centres of social and cultural well-being while protecting the environment.
  • It provides guidance for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and provides the underpinning for actions to address climate change.

About APMCHUD

APMCHUD is an intergovernmental mechanism for collaboration and cooperation in the field of housing and development among Asia Pacific countries. It was established under the aegis and support of UN-Habitat. It is consultative mechanism on the promotion of sustainable development of housing and urban development in Asia-Pacific region.

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