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Friday, November 17, 2017

DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS: 11 NOV 2017

DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS: 11 NOV 2017
(DAILY NEWS INDIA)
SHARED BY: WWW.DAILYGK.IN

1.      23RD GST COUNCIL MEET HELD IN GUWAHATI, 28% TAX ONLY FOR 50 ITEMS
i. 23rd meeting of the Goods and Services Tax Council headed by Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley was held in Guwahati, Assam. Decisions taken during this meeting of GST council has brought in a comprehensive overhaul of GST rates. Besides return filing has been eased and more relief has been provided to small and medium enterprises.
ii. GST rate on 177 items has been reduced from 28% to 18%. Now only 50 items, mostly demerit, sin and luxury goods will attract 28% GST rate. This decision will have a revenue implication of Rs 20000 cr annually.
iii. Some of the items for which GST rate has been reduced from 28% to 18% include chewing gum, dental hygiene products, chocolate, aftershave, detergent, marble, custard powder, deodorant, nail polishes and creams.
iv. Besides, 13 items have been moved from 18% to 12% slab, 6 items from 18% to 5% slab, 8 items from 12% to 5% slab and 6 items from 5% to nil. The new tax rates will come into effect from November 15, 2017.
v. All restaurants across India (Air conditioned and non-Air conditioned restaurants), except those in five-star hotels will be levied GST of 5%, without input tax credit benefits. The GST Council has also raised the threshold for the composition scheme to 1.5 cr from 1 cr. Under the composition scheme, traders are allowed to pay a fixed rate to avoid GST paperwork. For nil liability tax filers, fine for late filing of returns has been cut to 20 per day from Rs. 200.

2.      INDIA RE-ELECTED MEMBER OF UNESCO’S EXECUTIVE BOARD
i. India has been re-elected as the member of the UNESCO’s executive board, its top decision-making body. The election was held at the 39th session of the General Conference of the UNESCO in Paris, France.
ii. The General Conference consists of the representatives of the States Members of the organisation. Each country has one vote, irrespective of its size or the extent of its contribution to the budget.


3.      SECOND MEETING OF ECONOMIC ADVISORY COUNCIL HELD IN NEW DELHI
i. The second meeting of the Economic Advisory Council to PM Narendra Modi (EAC-PM) was held in New Delhi. The meeting was chaired by Bibek Debroy. It was attended by renowned economists Dr. Surjit Bhalla, Dr. Rathin Roy, Dr. Shamika Ravi, Dr. Ashima Goyal and Member Secretary and Principal Adviser NITI Aayog, Ratan P. Watal.
ii. In the meeting road map towards skill development, job creation, enhanced resource investment in the social sector– including for Health and Education and for boosting Infrastructure financing were discussed.
iii. Recommendations for framework of 15th Finance Commission, incentivisation of states for achieving health, education and social inclusion outcomes were formulated.
iv. Improvements in exports and employment potential were also discussed, including through transformation of India’s Gold Market.

4.      FIRST EVER NORDIC-BALTIC YOUTH FILM FESTIVAL IN INDIA
i. The Nordic-Baltic embassies will host the first ever youth film festival of the European nations in Delhi showcasing movies from the region.
ii. The 6-Day long festival will run in collaboration with the India Habitat Centre. The Nordic-Baltic countries Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden, or NB8 are tied together geographically and historically through trade, culture and many common value systems.

5.      KIREN RIJIJU INAUGURATES ‘INDIA DISASTER RESPONSE SUMMIT’ IN NEW DELHI
i. Union Minister of State for Home Affairs, Kiren Rijiju inaugurated ‘India Disaster Response Summit’ in New Delhi. This Summit was jointly organised by the National Disaster Management Authority and social networking site Facebook.
ii. India has become the first country to partner with Facebook on disaster response. During the Summit, deliberations were held on how best to leverage social media platforms to ‘prepare, respond and recover during and after a disaster.
iii. While addressing the Summit, Mr. Rijiju stated that as these days’ social media occupies an important place in everybody’s day to day life, it can play a vital role in information communication, especially during disasters.
iv. During the Summit, Facebook introduced a Disaster Information Volunteers programme. Under DIV, a network of trained volunteers would provide supplementary information on disasters in their local communities. This information would assist Government in carrying out relief work.

6.      ADANI POWER INKS POWER PURCHASE AGREEMENT WITH BANGLADESH
i. Adani Power (Jharkhand) has inked long-term pact with Bangladesh Power Development Board  (BPDB) to supply electricity from its upcoming 1,600 MW plant at Godda in Jharkhand.
ii. It has signed a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) for net capacity of 1,496 MW with BPDB for 25 years. The power supply under the PPA will be made from a new  1,600 MW (2x800 MW) ultra supercritical, coal based power plant to be set up by Adani Power (Jharkhand).

7.      IFAD APPROVES USD 30 MILLION FOR NORTH EAST PROJECT
i. International Fund for Agriculture Development, an international financial institution and a specialised agency of the United Nations has approved a USD 30 million soft loans for 4th phase of the North Eastern Region Community Resource Management Project.
ii. NERCORMP is a livelihood and rural development project aimed to transform the lives of the poor and marginalized tribal families in several districts of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and Manipur.
iii. It is jointly administered by North Eastern Council under Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region and International Fund for Agricultural Development. During the first phase of NERCORMP (1999-2008), two districts each in Assam (Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao), Manipur (Ukhrul and Senapati) and Meghalaya (West Khasi Hills and West Garo Hills district) were covered.

8.      FEDERAL BANK GETS RBI NOD TO OPEN OFFICES IN KUWAIT, SINGAPORE
i. Federal Bank has obtained RBI approval to open representative offices at Kuwait and Singapore.
ii. The bank already has its representative offices in Abu Dhabi and Dubai and it has tied up with 110+ overseas banks/remittance partners.

9.      GOVERNMENT TRIPLES HOME LOAN LIMIT FOR CENTRAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES TO RS 25 LAKH
i. The government raised the maximum amount that a central government employee can borrow from the government to Rs 25 lakh for new construction/purchase of new house/flat.Banks cuts lending rates, home, corporate loans to be cheaperTriples home loan limit – 7th pay commission:
ii. The limit for home loan borrowing has been tripled for central government employees as per the 7th pay commission recommendations. Earlier this limit was only Rs 7.50 lakh. This move is going to benefit about 50 lakh central government employees all over India.
iii. The employee can borrow up to 34 months of the basic pay to a maximum of Rs 25 lakh, or cost of the house/flat, or the amount according to repaying capacity, whichever is the least.
iv. If both spouses are central government employees, they can take Housing Building Advance either jointly, or separately. Also, the rate of Interest on HBA will be only 8.50% at simple interest.

10.  ISRAEL HONORS NATALIE PORTMAN WITH ‘JEWISH NOBEL PRIZE’
i. Natalie Portman has been awarded Israel’s 2018 Genesis Prize in recognition of her commitment to social causes and deep connection to her Jewish and Israeli roots.
ii. The $1 million award, known as “the Jewish Nobel Prize,” is granted each year to a person recognized as an inspiration to the next generation of Jews through professional achievement and commitment to Jewish values. Ms. Portman is the fifth winner and first woman to receive the prize.
OBJECTIVE QUESTIONS BASED ON TODAY’S NEWS
Q1. IN WHICH STATE, 23RD MEETING OF THE GOODS AND SERVICES TAX COUNCIL WAS HELD AT?
a)  Manipur
b)  Assam
c)  Jharkhand
d)  Bihar
Q2. IN WHICH PART OF INDIA, THE UNION MINISTER OF STATE FOR HOME AFFAIRS, KIREN RIJIJU INAUGURATED ‘INDIA DISASTER RESPONSE SUMMIT’ ?
a)  New Delhi
b)  Odisha
c)  Punjab
d)  Haryana
Q3. WHICH COUNTRY GOT RE-ELECTED AS A MEMBER OF THE EXECUTIVE BOARD OF THE UN EDUCATIONAL, SCIENTIFIC AND CULTURAL ORGANIZATION?
a)  Singapore
b)  USA
c)  Indonesia
d)  India
Q4. IN WHICH CITY, THE 2ND MEETING OF THE ECONOMIC ADVISORY COUNCIL WAS HELD AT?
a)  Trivandrum
b)  Srinagar
c)  New Delhi
d)  Gujarat
Q5. WHICH INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATION HAS APPROVED AN USD 30 MILLION SOFT LOANS FOR FOURTH PHASE OF THE NORTH EASTERN REGION COMMUNITY RESOURCE MANAGEMENT PROJECT?
a)  World Trade Organization
b)  International Fund for Agriculture Development
c)  World Health Organization
d)  World Bank

ANSWERS: 

1 - B    2 - A    3 - D    4 - C    5 - B

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