North East Circuit Project Current Affairs - 2020

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Cabinet approves North East Natural Gas Pipeline Grid

On January 8, 2020, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the North East Gas Pipeline Grid. The pipeline is to be constructed for around 1,656 km.

Highlights

The gas pipeline grid is to be developed in eight states of the North East Region namely Manipur, Meghalaya, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Sikkim, Nagaland and Tripura. The project is a joint venture of 5 Public sector units namely ONGC (Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited), IOCL (Indian Oil Corporation Limited), OIL (Oil India Limited), GAIL (Gas Authority of India Limited) and NRL (Numaligarh Refinery Limited). The Joint Venture has been named IGGL (Indra Dhanush Gas Grid Limited).

The Government of India has approved Rs 5,559 crores funding for the construction of the grid. The grid will connect major cities of the North East namely Guwahati, Itanagar, Kohima, Dimapur, Aizwal, Imphal, Shillong, Agartala, Silchar, Numaligarh and Gangtok.

About the Grid

The Grid will supply CNG to automobiles, cooking gas to households and fuel to industry. The Group Consortium will receive 60% of the funding for the project and the rest has to be raised via debts and equity. The project will be monitored by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas. The Ministry will also release capital for the project in further stages.

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India-Japan meet to review Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement

On December 10, 2019, a Japanese delegation led by Japanese Minister Mr Hiroshi Kajiyama visited Minister of North Eastern Region Development. The ministers discussed different areas of cooperation that included nuclear power, technology and infrastructure. The Countries also renewed their Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement.

Highlights

The Joint Working Group meeting of India and Japan was also held. During the meeting, the issues related human resources were discussed. In previous JWG meeting the countries discussed on the issues of civil nuclear liability. The next meeting is scheduled to be held in January 2020.

Japanese Investment in the North East

The Japanese Government will invest Rs 13,000 crores in the North Eastern region. The investment will include projects such as Guwahati Water Supply project, North East Road Network Connectivity Improvement Project in Meghalaya, Guwahati Sewage Project in Assam, Bio-Diversity Conservation project in Sikkim, Forest Management Project in Sikkim, Technical Cooperation Project for Sustainable Agriculture and Irrigation in Mizoram, etc.

India’s Expectations

India calls to enhance Japanese Investments in steel and energy sectors. Steel demand of India is expected to grow exponentially as the country embarks becoming a 5 trillion USD economy by 2024. Also, India has plans to invest 1.4 trillion USD in infrastructure development in next five years.

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