Corona Virus Current Affairs - 2020

HydroxyChloroquine now made a H1 Drug in India; Exports banned

On March 27, 2020, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare declared the Hydroxycholoroquine as a Schedule H1 drug. With this GOI has brough upon restrictions on sales and distribution of the drug.

Highlights

The Hydroxychloroquine drug was declared as an essential drug to treat COVID-19 patients. Out of the 4 treatments suggested by the World Health Organization to contain the virus, India adopted the use of Hydroxychloroquine. And hence, exports of the drugs were banned in the country. Currently the drug is being prescribed for symptomatic patients and also for asymptomatic patients that are in contact with the Corona infected patients.

What is Schedule H1?

The drugs listed under Schedule H1 are required to be sold under following conditions

  • The supply if H1 drugs are to be registered in a separate register. The register should hold the name and address of the prescriber and the patient. It should also hold quantity supplied. And these details are to be held by the supplier for a minimum of three years.
  • The drug listed under Schedule H1 should be labelled as “Rx” in red colour. The label should also carry precautionary warnings

RBI: Cuts repo rate to 4.4%; CRR to 3%; 3-month moratorium allowed on all loans

On March 27, 2020, the Reserve Bank of India announced series of measures to counter economic slowdown caused due to COVID-19. The Central bank advanced its Monetary Policy Committee meet due to COVID-19 pandemic. This was the 7th Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Statement of the RBI for the financial year 2019-20.

The RBI measures introduced is to inject Rs 3.74 lakh core into the Indian Economy according to the RBI Governor.

Highlights

While India has locked down its economic activity, the main objective of RBI is to keep finance flowing.

The repo rate was cut by 75 basis points (bps) to 4.4%, reverse repo rate was cut by 90 bps to 4%. RBI rules banks and other institutions to provide a three-month moratorium on all loans.

Other Key Decisions

The Cash Reserve Ratio was cut by 100 bps to 3% of NTDL (Net Time and Demand Liabilities). The Cash Reserve Ratio is the minimum fraction of the customer deposit that a bank can hold.

The investments are to be classified as Held To Maturity. RBI is to introduce Net Stable Funding Ratio between April and October, 2020. It is the ratio between amount of  stable funding available to the amount of stable funding required.