ONGC Current Affairs - 2020

Public Enterprises Survey: Air India, MTNL, BSNL highest loss makings PSUs in FY19

On February 10, 2020, the Department of Public Enterprises operating under Ministry of Heavy Industries tabled the “Public Enterprises Survey” on the parliament. The report says that the net profit from the PSUs has increased by 15.5% as compared to the previous year.

Highlights

The survey said that Indian Oil Corporation, NTPC and ONGC were the top three profitable PSUs in 2018-19. On the other hand, MTNL, BSNL and Air India were the highest loss-making PSU. Also, the survey noted that these three PSUs have been making losses for three consecutive years.

The report also said that total income from Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSE) in the year 2018-19 was 24 lakh crore rupees. It was 20 lakh crore rupees the previous year. There has been an increase of 4.67%

Relative performance

The enterprises such as MSTC, Chennai Petroleum Corporation and State Trading Corporation that were making profit last year (2017-18) incurred loss in the fiscal year 2019 (2019-19).

There are a total of 348 CPSEs. Out of these 249 are operational, 13 are under closure or liquidation and 86 are under construction.

Cauvery Delta of Tamil Nadu declared Protected Agricultural Zone

On February 10, 2020, Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu announced that Cauvery Delta is to be declared as Protected Special Agricultural Zone. In 2019, the Central Government had awarded the oil and gas exploration projects in the Cauvery basin. This invoked large protests amid water crisis in the state. Extraction of hydro carbon requires excess amount of fresh water.

Highlights

With the zone being Agricultural protected Zone, the permission of State government is required to undertake projects. This infers that oil exploration projects cannot be undertaken by the private firms without the permission of state government.

Agricultural Protection Zone

When a land is announced as Protected Agricultural Zone, it cannot be used for any other non-agricultural activities.

Significance

The Environmental Impact Assessment of 2006 that was recently amended by the central government gives permission for ONGC and other private firms. And since Cauvery Delta is rich in Hydrocarbons, it is essential to protect the agricultural land in the region.