Committee for Development Current Affairs - 2020

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Facts Box: “Three Capital Bill” of Andhra Pradesh

The Andhra Pradesh Government has passed the “Andhra Pradesh Decentralisation and Equal Development of All Regions Bill”, 2020. The bill paves way for three capitals of the state.

Highlights

The three capitals are Amaravati-legislative capital, Vishakhapatnam-the executive capital and Kurnool-judicial capital. The three-capital system is being adopted by the government of Andhra Pradesh in order to ensure equal development throughout the state. This also aids in decentralization of government. The above cities were selected as capitals for their strategic location to aid decentralization.

Committees

The cities were recommended by the committees namely B N Sri Krishna Committee, G N Rao Committee and K Sivaramakrishnan Committee.

Indian States

There are other states in India with two capitals as well. It includes Maharashtra, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir. The capitals of Maharashtra are Mumbai and Nagpur. The state holds winter session of the state in Nagpur. Similarly, the capitals of Himachal Pradesh are Shimla and Dharamshala (Winter). The capital of Jammu and Kashmir were Srinagar and Jammu (winter).

Other Countries

The other countries that have multiple capitals include Sri Lanka and Malaysia. In Sri Lanka, Jayawardenepura Kotte is the seat of national legislature and is the official capital and Colombo is the seat of judicial bodies and national executives.

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India to host WTO Ministerial Meeting of Developing Countries

India will be hosting a World Trade Organisation (WTO) Ministerial meeting of developing countries in New Delhi on 13-14 May 2019. The aim is to discuss various challenges being faced by multilateral rules-based-trading system.

Key Highlights of Meeting

  • Participants: includes
  1. Six Least Developed Countries (LDC), namely Benin, Bangladesh, Central African Republic (CAR), Chad, Uganda, Malawi.
  2. Sixteen developing countries, namely Turkey, Indonesia, Malaysia, South Africa, Argentina, Brazil, Egypt, Guyana, Jamaica, Kazakhstan, Guatemala, Nigeria, Oman, China, Saudi Arabia, Barbados.
  3. Director-General (DG) of World Trade Organization (WTO), Roberto Azevêdo.
  • The two-day meeting will be an interaction between participants in order to provide an opportunity to Ministers to discuss various issues and the way forward.
  • Purpose: The meeting is an effort to bring developing countries and Least Developed Countries (LDCs) together on one platform and to share common concerns on various issues affecting WTO and also working together in addressing these issues.
  • Significance: The meeting is being held at a time when multilateral rules-based-trading system is facing serious challenges. In recent times, there has been an increase in unilateral measures and counter measures by member nations, further leading to deadlock in key areas of negotiations and stand-off in Appellate Body. This is threatening the very existence of Dispute Settlement Mechanism of WTO and impacting WTOs position as an effective multilateral organisation. This current scenario has given rise to demands from various quarters to reform the WTO.
  • Importance: Meeting will provide an opportunity to LDCs and developing countries to build consensus on how to move forward on WTO reforms, at the same time preserving fundamentals of multilateral trading system (MTS) enshrined in WTO.
  • The key discussions will also be about at getting a direction on how to constructively engage on various issues (both institutional and negotiating) in WTO, in the upcoming WTO’s Twelfth Ministerial Conference which will be held in Kazakhstan in June 2020.

About Least developed countries (LDCs)

  • They are low-income countries facing severe structural limitation to sustainable development. LDCs have low levels of human assets and are also, extremely vulnerable to economic and environmental shocks.
  • Currently there are 47 countries designated as LDCs by United Nations (UN). The LDC status is reviewed every three years by Committee for Development (CDP).
  • CDP uses three criteria to identify LDCs –
    1. Gross National Income (GNI) per capita
    2. Human Assets Index (HAI)
    3. Economic Vulnerability Index (EVI)

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