Trade Current Affairs

CriSidEx: CRISIL, SIDBI launches India’s first MSE Sentiment Index

The SIDBI (Small Industries Development Bank of India) and ratings agency Crisil have launched CriSidEx, India’s first MSE Sentiment Index for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs). The index will help to indicate the current state and expected outlook on the MSME sector every quarter.

CriSidEx

CRISIL-SIDBI MSE Sentiment Index (or CriSidEx) has been developed jointly by CRISIL and SIDBI. It is a composite index based on diffusion index of 8 parameters. It measures MSE business sentiment on a scale of 0 (extremely negative) to 200 (extremely positive).

The parametric feedback for the index will be captured through a survey of 1100 MSEs. CriSidEx will have 2 indices, one for ‘survey quarter’ and another for ‘next quarter’. Once trend emerges after few rounds of survey, it will provide independent time series data.

Significance of index

  • Provide crucial insights into employment, business environment and foreign trade in MSME sector.
  • Allow policy makers to take timely proactive steps, including those based on early warnings thrown up by survey of index.
  • Provide intelligence and insights for regulators, trade bodies, lenders as well as economic and financial analysts.
  • Help in forecasting business environment by capturing sentiment on various business parameters such as business situation, capacity utilisation, order book and margins.
  • Flag potential headwinds and changes in production cycles in MSME sector and thus help in improving market efficiencies.

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India joins Ashgabat agreement

India has joined Ashgabat Agreement which envisages facilitation of transit and transportation of goods between Central Asia and the Persian Gulf to significantly boost up trade and investment. It was informed by Turkmenistan, as depository state of the Agreement that all its four founding members have consented to accession of India.

Ashgabat Agreement

Ashgabat Agreement aims at establishment of International Transport and Transit Corridor between the Iran, Oman, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. It was signed in April 2011 and is named after  capital of Turkmenistan, Ashgabat. It establishes international transport and transit corridor between Central Asia and the Persian Gulf countries. Pakistan is also its member since October 2016.

Significance of accession to Agreement

  • It will enable India to utilise this existing transport and transit corridor to facilitate trade and commercial interaction and ties with Central Asia and Eurasian region.
  • It will synchronise India’s efforts to implement the International North South Transport Corridor (INSTC) for enhanced connectivity.
  • It will provide India an opportunity for reorientation of the freight traffic from the traditional sea route to land transcontinental routes.

Background

India had deposited the Instrument of Accession with Turkmenistan in April 2016. Prior to it, the Union Cabinet had given its approval for India to accede to Ashgabat Agreement in March 2016.

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