Reports & Indices Current Affairs - 2019
This category comprises Current Affairs 2019-2020 related to various reports and indexes / indices by National and International Bodies and organizations such as World, Bank, World Economic Forum, NITI Aayog and various other educational and research organizations. We also place report highlights of various committees and commissions in this category.
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India was placed at 40th spot among 137 countries in World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Global Competitiveness Index (GCI) 2017-18. India has slipped by one position compared to 39th spot in 2016 GCI.
Global Competitiveness Index
WEF’s GCI assesses competitiveness of countries to provide insight into drivers of their productivity and prosperity. GCI scores are calculated on basis of 12 categories called ‘pillars of competitiveness which covers both business and social indicators. It includes pillars such as institutions, infrastructure, health and primary education, labour market efficiency, financial market development, technological readiness and market size.
Key Highlights of 2017 GCI
Top 5 Countries: Switzerland (1st), United States (2nd), Singapore (3rd), Netherlands (4th) and Germany (5th).
BRICS Countries: China (27th), Russia (38th), India (40th), South Africa (61st) and Brazil (80th).
India related facts: India remains most competitive country in South Asia. It has improved across most pillars of competitiveness, particularly infrastructure (66th, up by 2), higher education and training (75th, up by 6), and technological readiness (107th, up by 3) reflecting recent public investments in these areas. The report has lauded India’s efforts in information and communications technology (ICT) sector as it can boost internet economy.
Global Challenges: According to 2017 GCI, there are risks from uncertain global economic conditions. Since 2008 global financial crisis, prospects for sustained economic recovery remain at risk due to widespread failure on part of leaders and policymakers to put in place reforms necessary to underpin competitiveness.
According to World Nuclear Industry Status Report 2017, India with six installed nuclear reactors ranks third in world, while China is leading at 20 installed nuclear reactors.
Key Highlights of Report
Decline in Nuclear Reactors: The number of nuclear reactor units under construction is declining globally for fourth year in a row, from 68 reactors at end of 2013 to 53 by mid-2017. Most nuclear reactor constructions are behind schedule, with delays resulting in increase in project costs and delay in power generation.
Delay in Projects: Globally, there are 37 reactor constructions behind schedule, of which 19 reported further delays over past year. In India itself, five out of six reactors under construction are behind schedule. Eight nuclear power projects have been under construction globally for a decade or more, of which three have been so for over 30 years.
Nuclear power vs Renewable energy: Debate regarding value of nuclear energy “is over” especially nuclear power vs renewable energy development. It reveals that since 1997, worldwide, renewable energy has produced four times as many new kilowatt-hours of electricity than nuclear power.
Power generation: Globally it has increased by 1.4% in 2016 due to a 23% increase in China, but it is stagnated at 10.5%. By comparison, globally, wind power output grew by 16% and solar power by 30%. Wind power increased 3.8 times, and solar power by 2.2 times more than nuclear power respectively. Renewables represented 62% of global power generating capacity additions.
Shutting down of nuclear plants: Russia and US have shut down reactors in 2016. Sweden and South Korea also have closed their oldest units in first half of 2017.
Financial crisis in nuclear Industry: In recent years, financial crisis plaguing nuclear industry. Toshiba has filed for bankruptcy of its US subsidiary Westinghouse, largest nuclear power builder in history. France’s AREVA also has accumulated $12.3 billion in losses over past six years. French government has provided it $5.3 billion bailout and continues its break-up strategy.