Current Affairs – February 17, 2018

PM Narendra Modi inaugurates World Sustainable Development Summit 2018

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the World Sustainable Development Summit 2018 in New Delhi. The 3-day event has been that has been organized by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI). PM Modi while addressing the gathering at the inaugural speech laid emphasis on the major current environmental problems that are being faced by the developing nations. He added that successful climate action needs access to financial resources and technology. Technology can help countries like India to develop sustainably and enable poor to benefit from it.
PM Narendra Modi also said that we need to act upon the belief that we as humans can make a difference to the plant. “This planet, our Mother Earth, is one. So we should rise above our trivial differences and act as one to save her.” “With our deep-rooted philosophy of coexistence with nature and coexistence with each other, we invite you to join us in the journey of making this planet a more safe and sustainable place. I wish this summit a great success,” says PM Modi.
New Delhi CM Shri Arvind Kejriwal and Governor Anil Baijal

PhonePe partners with IOCL for deployment of PoS terminals

Digital payments entity PhonePe has partnered with Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) for the adoption of its indigenously-designed Point of Sale (POS) device at IOCL retail outlets. As part of this partnership, customers can pay using UPI, credit and debit cards, PhonePe wallet and other external wallets like Jio Money & Freecharge for their fuel purchases, through the PoS device at 30 IOCL retail outlets in Bengaluru.
The device will allow IOCL customers to pay using UPI, credit and debit cards, PhonePe wallet, or other external wallets including JIO money and Freecharge. It’s interesting to note that PhonePe rivals – Softbank-backed Paytm and Sequoia Capital-backed Mobikwik have also directly tied up with various oil and gas distribution outlets in India.

Sanjiv Bajaj is the EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2017

Sanjiv Bajaj, Managing Director of Bajaj Finserv, has been named the EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2017. He will represent India at the EY World Entrepreneur of the Year Award (WEOY) in Monte Carlo. “Sanjiv Bajaj will now represent India at the EY World Entrepreneur of the Year award (WEOY) in Monte Carlo from 13-17 June 2018,” EY said in a statement.
E. Sreedharan, widely acknowledged for his contribution in transforming the public transport system in India, has been honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award, EY said in a release. He was instrumental in the planning and execution of Kolkata Metro, Delhi Metro, Kochi Metro and Lucknow Metro. He also spearheaded the Konkan Railway project, considered among the most difficult railway projects in the world, completing it in a short span of eight years.

Milkbasket recognized as ‘Startup of the Year’ 2017

Milkbasket, India’s first and largest micro-delivery platform has been recognized as ‘Startup of the Year’ 2017 at the 7th Small Business Awards. The Startup of the Year award is dedicated to young SMEs, aged 7 years or less, with great potential to become big in local/international markets. Considered as the most coveted awards show complementing the league’s best across SMEs, SMB and new and emerging small-scale ventures, Small Business Awards 2018 was organized by Franchise India Group. The award ceremony was hosted in New Delhi.
Launched in early 2015, Milkbasket is India’s first and largest daily micro-delivery service. Built on the unique Indian habit of getting fresh milk delivered at home every morning before 7:00 a.m. Founded by INSEAD alumnus Anant Goel with his co-founders Ashish Goel, Anurag Jain and Yatish Talvadia, Milkbasket delivers only in select areas while expanding its network with new launches every week.

Iran President Starts Three-Day Visit to India for Key Talks

This will be the first visit to India by Hassan Rouhani after taking charge as the Iranian president in August 2013. It comes after Modi’s visit to Tehran in 2016 during which a trilateral agreement on transit and transport was signed between India, Iran, and Afghanistan. India committed $85 million in investment for the development of the Shahid Beheshti Port in Iran’s southeastern city of Chabahar. The first phase of the port was inaugurated by President Rouhani in December last year, a little over a month after the first consignment of wheat from India to Afghanistan was sent via this facility.
According to Iranian news agency Irna, Rouhani has arrived in Hyderabad on 15th February where he will meet the city’s Muslim Ulemas. He will also meet Iranian nationals, including students, residing in India. Modi and Rouhani will hold a bilateral meeting here on 17th February, during the course of which both sides would review the progress achieved in bilateral relations and also exchange views on regional and international issues of mutual interest, according to a ministry statement.

Govt to change base year for GDP, IIP to 2017-18

The government will change the base year to 2017-18 for the calculation of GDP and IIP numbers, while for retail inflation the year will be revised to 2018, Union Minister D V Sadananda Gowda said recently. “During 2018-19, the Ministry is proposing to initiate steps to revise the base years of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Index of Industrial Production (IIP) and Consumer Price Index (CPI) to accommodate and factor the changes that take place in the economic scenario of the country,” the Statistics and Programme Implementation Minister said at a conference on budget provisions.
The Statistics Ministry has proposed the new base year for GDP and IIP as 2017-18 while for CPI it will be 2018. Gowda said the ministry will undertake various steps in the next fiscal beginning April that will improve the statistical system that will help meet the data requirements in the emerging socio-economic scenario. The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MOSPI) has been allocated Rs 4,859 crore in the Union Budget 2018-19.

Haruhiko Kuroda re-appointed as Bank of Japan chief

Japan’s government reappointed Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda for another term and chose an advocate of bolder monetary easing as one of his deputies, a sign the central bank will be in no rush to dial back its massive stimulus programme. The selection of the new BOJ leadership comes at a crucial time for Japanese and global markets, which have been rattled in recent weeks on expectations major central banks will whittle down their crisis-mode stimulus.
In a widely expected move, the government nominated Kuroda to serve another five-year term when the current one ends in April, a sign of premier Shinzo Abe’s confidence over the governor’s efforts to pull Japan’s economy out of stagnation.

M&M to invest up to Rs 176 crore in Zoomcar

Auto major Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) said it will invest up to Rs 176 crore in a car and bicycle rental firm Zoomcar India and Zoomcar Inc, is US incorporated holding parent company. Under the aegis of the deal, Mahindra Group would invest up to Rs 176 crore in Zoomcar India or Zoomcar Inc. which, when converted to common stock of Zoomcar Inc on a fully diluted basis, would constitute approximately 16 percent stake in Zoomcar Inc, the company said in a statement.
Mahindra said the company has been keen to invest in the shared mobility space as a part of its strategy to participate in sustainable mobility solutions. In November last year, Mahindra and Zoomcar announced a partnership to introduce electric vehicles in the shared mobility space. Zoomcar recently launched Mahindra e20Plus electric vehicles (EV) across Mysore, Bangalore, and Hyderabad.

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