India-UAE Current Affairs - 2019
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The United Arab Emirates (UAE) launched ‘Golden Card’ Permanent Residency Scheme in an attempt to woo wealthy individuals and exceptional talents from all over the world.
- About: The “Golden Card” programme was unveiled by UAE Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum (who is also Dubai’s ruler).
- The UAE has always opened its door to millions of people looking for pursuing their dreams and betterment of lives. The Golden Card is UAE’s way to welcome all those seeking to be a part of the UAE’s success story and making it a second home.
- It is introduced keeping in mind that Residents are an indispensable part of country and thus will be permanent partners in UAE’s journey.
- Reason: Expatriates in the UAE are usually given limited duration residence permits under a sponsorship system.
About ‘Golden Card’ Programme
- It is open to investors and ‘exceptional talents’ like scientists, engineers, doctors, students and artists.
- The Golden Card offers permanent residency and unprecedented benefits to cardholders as well as to their families while creating an attractive environment for growth and business. The benefits of PR also includes spouse and children of cardholder so as to ensure cohesive social ties.
- As part of initiative, the first group of 6800 investors from more than 70 countries with investments of about 100 Billion Dirhams (USD 27 billion), were being given permanent residency.
- Benefits: This new initiative will attract greater foreign investment (FI) and activate local economy, making it more efficient and attractive for investors. It will also increase UAE’s competitiveness on a global scale and will reaffirm country’s position as a global incubator.
- The “Golden Card” visa includes five categories –
- General investors who will be granted a 10 year permanent residency visas .
- Real Estate Investors, who can get a visa for 5 year visa.
- Entrepreneurs and Talented Professionals like doctors, researchers and innovators can get 10 years visa.
- The fifth category is ‘outstanding students’. These will also be permitted 5 years permanent residency visas.
- All mentioned categories of visas can be renewed upon expiry.
The Indian expatriate community is the largest ethnic community in UAE. It constitutes roughly about 30% of country’s population, which is around 9 million. Although, most of the Indians living in UAE are employed, about 10% of Indian population constitutes dependent family members. This Golden Card programme could attract more Indian professionals and businessmen to Gulf nation.
ISPRL signs MoU with ADNOC to explore storage of crude oil at Padur underground facility in Karnataka
Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Ltd. (ISPRL) has signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) to explore storage of crude oil at Padur underground facility in Karnataka. This follows arrival of final shipment of initial delivery of ADNOC crude to be stored in another ISPRL underground facility in Mangaluru, which will store 5.86 million barrels.
ISPRL is Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Oil Industry Development Board (OIDB) under Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas.
The MoU mandates ADNOC to store crude oil at Padur Strategic Petroleum Reserve which has storage capacity 2.5 million-tonne (~17 million barrels) capacity for emergency needs. ADNOC will store crude in two compartments at Padur. ADNOC is only foreign oil and gas company, so far to invest, by way of crude oil in India’s strategic petroleum reserves program. This will help to ensure energy security to India and enable ADNOC to efficiently and competitively meet Indian market demand.
Under the Phase I of Strategic Petroleum Reserves Program, SPRL has already built 5.33 million tons of underground storage capacity at three locations, Visakhapatnam (1.33 million tons), Mangalore (1.5 million tons) and Padur (2.5 million tons), that can meet around 10 days of the country’s oil needs. In June 2018, Government announced phase II of program for creation of two new reserves, a 4-million-tons storage facility at Chandikhol in Odisha, and an additional 2.5-million-tons facility at Padur. The combined strategic reserve capacity of existing and newly announced facilities will be 15.33 million tons and will provide around 22 days of emergency coverage for India’s crude oil requirements.