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RINL Signs MoU with CCI for setting up Cement Plant
Jul 15,2017

Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited (RINL), the corporate entity of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant and Cement Corporation of India (CCI), a PSU under Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Vishakhapatnam today to set up 2 mtpa Fly Ash and Blast Furnace Slag based Cement Plant in a Joint Venture in two phases of one million tonne capacity each. RINL generates a large quantity of BF slag and fly ash, prime raw material for the Cement Plant.

Sri Manoj Misra, Chairman cum Managing Director representing CCI and Sri P.C. Mohapatra, Director (Projects) representing RINL signed the MoU in the presence of Sri P Madhusudan CMD,RINL.

The JV Project cost is approximately Rs.150 Cr. RINL is offering around 35 acres of land for the proposed plant in its premises. The project is proposed to be completed in 15 months from the date of placement of order.

Speaking on the occasion, Sri P Madhusudan, CMD,RINL expressed confidence that CCI would set up the plant with state of the art technology in a pollution free environment, with professional way and in a time bound manner. He observed that CCI should show commitment with their expertise to translate the dream into reality and RINL would extend necessary support to realize the goal in this regard, he added.

Sri Manoj Misra, CMD said that CCI is one of the lowest cost producer of cement in the country and joining hands with RINL will be a win-win situation for both the Companies and help both the PSUs to offer more integrated product solutions to their customers.

Executive Directors and General Managers from RINL were present on the occasion.

The location of the proposed plant shall result in immense logistical cost benefits due to availability of BF slag and Fly ash. The nearby port shall also provide avenues for export of Cement as well as import of Clinker, if required. Plant and machinery available with CCI are expected to bring down the project cost. The cost data as indicated by CCI apparently makes CCI one of the lowest cost manufacturers of Clinker in India.

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Railways Ministry to improve infrastructure; logistic becoming a new engine of growth: Suresh Prabhu
Jul 15,2017

Railway ministry is focussing more on improving the infrastructure of Indian Railways to create a proper logistics and seamless movement of traffic said Railways Minister Mr. Suresh Prabhu at an ASSOCHAM event.

Therefore, we have decided to create an infrastructure at much faster pace. Already we are creating infrastructure twice to speed than previous year and will increase every year, said Mr. Suresh Prabhu, Union Minister for Railways.

Mr. Prabhu said he has sanctioned 16,500 km of doubling and tripling lines as against only 22,000 km in the last 70 years. Only 42% of electrification has been made so far and will double in next five years plan.

n++We are already creating about 100 private freight terminals with private participation so that more and more traffic can come to the railwaysn++.

We are already plan to save about Rs. 41,000 crores from the energy bill and we have already saved about 10% of that. So, all of this will result in creating a good logistic backbone for India which will help India to do much better business as logistics is key to success of industrialisation. The port connectivity happens properly, we are also providing private participation into most of the sectors.

The GST (Goods Services and Tax) which is a game changer for the country is created a fiscal situation wherein goods and services can move from one end to another without any hindrance, said Mr. Prabhu .

On the histrionically low consumer price inflation, Mr. Prabhu said, this is the result of sound fiscal monetary policies in India. Our Prime Minister already said that people at large are suffering because of inflation being very high and the growth rate being low. So, it was double whammy. We actually reversed it, inflation is low and growth is high means the common people dont have to spend too much money on their daily necessities and they will have more savings.

So, this will be virtue cycle from the vicious one previously. Now, growth orientation will happen through participation of large number of people who will be entering the market as savers rather than just consumers and spenders. This will be a good beginning and probably over a period of time, will see more investments will come.

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WPI inflation dips to 11-month low of 0.9% in June 2017
Jul 14,2017

The Wholesale Price Index (WPI)-based inflation, base year 2011-12, dipped to a 11-month low of 0.9% in May 2017, showing sharp moderation for fourth straight months from 33-month high of 5.5% in February 2017. The WPI inflation dipped driven by fall in inflation for all three major sub-groups - primary articles, fuel and power group as well as manufactured products group in May 2017.

Inflation of primary articles plunged to (-) 3.9% in June 2017 from (-) 1.8% in May 2017. The inflation for fuel items dipped to 5.3% in June 2017 from 11.7% in May 2017. The inflation for manufactured products also fell to 2.3% in June 2017 from 2.6% in May 2017.

As per major commodity group-wise, inflation declined for foodgrains, vegetables, milk, spices, tea, coffee, betel leaves, fibres, oilseeds, fodder, metallic minerals, crude petroleum, mineral oils, electricity, food products, textiles, wearing apparel, paper & products, pharmaceutical products, rubber and plastic products, computer & products, machinery & equipment, motor vehicle, and other transport equipment in June 2017. On the other hand, inflation of fruits, egg, meat & fish, coking coal, beverages, leather products, wood products, media, chemical products, other non-metallic mineral products, basic metals, electrical equipment, furniture, and other manufacturing increased in June 2017.

Inflation of food items (food articles and food products) turned negative to (-) 1.2% in June 2017 from 0.1% in May 2017 level. Meanwhile, inflation of non-food items (all commodities excluding food items) also eased to 1.8% in June 2017 from 3.1% in May 2017.

Core inflation (manufactured products excluding foods products) eased marginally to 2.0% in June 2017 from 2.1% in May 2017.

The contribution of primary articles to the overall inflation, at 0.90%, was negative at (-) 103 basis points (bps) in June 2017 compared with (-) 47 bps to 2.17% in May 2017. The contribution of fuel product group dipped to 53 bps against 113 bps in May 2017, while that of manufactured products was lower at 144 bps compared with 163 bps.

The contribution of food items (food articles and food products) to inflation turned negative at (-) 37 bps in 0.90% in June 2017 compared with 4 bps to 2.17% in May 2017. Meanwhile, the contribution of non-food items (all commodities excluding food items) was 125 bps in June 2017 compared with 221 bps in May 2017.

The WPI inflation stood at 2.3% in April-June FY2018 against (-) 0.7% in April-June FY2017. The primary articles inflation was at (-) 1.6% in April-June FY2018 from 4.6% in April-June FY2017, while fuel products inflation increased to 11.2% from (-) 13.6%. The inflation for manufactured products bounced to 2.6% in April-June FY2018 from (-) 0.6% in April-June FY2017.

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Kharif Crop Sowing Crosses 563 Lakh Hectare Area
Jul 14,2017

The total sown area as on 14th July 2017, as per reports received from States, stands at 563.17 lakh hectare as compared to 521.80 lakh hectare at this time last year.

It is reported that rice has been sown/transplanted in 125.77 lakh ha, pulses in 74.61 lakh ha, coarse cereals in 113.06 lakh ha, sugarcane in 47.94 lakh hectare and cotton in 90.88 lakh ha.

The details of the area covered so far and that covered during this time last year are given below:

                                                                                                                              Lakh hectare 

CropArea sown in 2017-18Area sown in 2016-17Rice125.77120.32Pulses74.6160.28Coarse Cereals113.0698.79Oilseeds103.92115.75Sugarcane47.9445.22Jute & Mesta6.987.51Cotton90.8873.93Total563.17521.80

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Centre releases advance grant-in-aid of Rs.51.30 crore to Arunachal Pradesh for rescue and relief operations on account of flash floods
Jul 14,2017

The Centre has released in advance two installments of grant-in-aid to the State Government of Arunachal Pradesh towards Central share of State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF).

Due to heavy rains and floods in North East, Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance, Government of India has released Rupees 51 crore and 30 lakh as grant-in-aid to the State Government of Arunachal Pradesh on the basis of recommendation of the 14th Finance Commission for relief necessitated by natural calamities to the State. This amount is being released in advance for rescue and relief operations required on account of flash floods.

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European Union & India establish an Investment Facilitation Mechanism
Jul 14,2017

European Union (EU) and India today announced the establishment of an Investment Facilitation Mechanism (IFM) for EU Investments in India. The mechanism will allow for a close coordination between the European Union and the Government of India with an aim to promote and facilitate EU investment in India.

This agreement builds on the Joint Statement of the 13th EU-India Summit held in Brussels in March 2016, where the EU had welcomed Indias readiness to establish such a mechanism and leaders from both sides had reaffirmed their shared commitment to oppose protectionism and to work in favour of a fair, transparent and rule-based trade and investment environment.

As part of the IFM, the EU Delegation to India and the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce & Industry, agreed to hold regular high level meetings to assess and facilitate ease of doing business for EU investors in India. This will include identifying and putting in place solutions to procedural impediments faced by EU companies and investors in establishing or running their operations in India.

Stressing the importance of this initiative, H.E. Mr. Tomasz Koslowski, Ambassador of the European Union to India said, the establishment of the Investment Facilitation Mechanism is a right step in the direction of strengthening the trade and investment ties between the EU and India. The EU is the largest foreign investor in India and this initiative helps ensuring a more robust, effective and predictable business environment for the EU investors. At the last Summit in March 2016, leaders of both sides decided to create a new momentum in our relations. We are delivering on this.

DIPP Secretary, Mr. Ramesh Abhishek said n++Ease of doing business is a fundamental priority of our Governments Make in India Campaign and the establishment of IFM for facilitating EU investments in India is another step to achieve this goal. The IFM has been established with the key objectives of paving the way for identifying and solving problems faced by EU companies and investors with regard to their operations in India. The IFM will cover new investors as well as those already established in India. The IFM is also going to serve as a platform for discussing general suggestions from the point of view of EU companies and investors with regard to ease of doing business in India, which I am sure, would boost and encourage the EU investors to avail the investment opportunities available in Indian++

Invest India, the official Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency of the Government of India, will also be part of the Mechanism. It will create a single-window entry point for EU companies that need assistance for their investments at the central or state level. The DIPP will also facilitate participation of other relevant ministries and authorities on a case-to-case basis.

Trade and Investment are key elements of the EU-India Strategic Partnership launched in 2004. Along with being the first trade partner in goods and services, EU is one of the biggest provider of foreign investment in India, with a stock exceeding US$ 81.52 billion (more than 4.4 lakh crores INR) as of March 2017. There are currently more than 6,000 EU companies present in India, providing direct and indirect employment to over 6 million people.

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Ministry of Water Resources to Sign MoU with Ministry of Skill Development for the success of Namami Gange
Jul 14,2017

Union Ministry for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation will sign an MoU with Union Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship for the success of Namami Gange programme.

The MoU intends to develop skilled manpower for laying sewerage pipeline, plumbing works, construction of toilets, civil masonry works, waste collection and its disposal activities. It will also develop skills for preparing products from pious waste materials like flowers, leaves, coconuts, hair and associate plastic bags and plastic bottles etc. and their proper packaging and promotion of such products. The MoU will also help in developing skills for operation and maintenance of pumps and STPs.

As per the MoU the Ministry of Water Resource, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation shall develop the market for reuse/recycle of treated wastewater to be released from STP/ETPs for various non-potable purposes. It will also ensure necessary coordination and support from the state governments and state level implementing agencies for various activities to be undertaken by the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship as part of Namami Gange programme. The Ministry will also mobilize resources for creation of Pradhan Mantri Namami Gange Kaushal Kendras in 60 districts covered under Namami Gange Mission.

The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship will take initiative and develop programme for capacity building and traditional activities such as packaging and promotion of industrial products. It will take initiative in developing skills for preparing products from waste material generated along that Ghats of Ganga like flowers, leaves, coconut, hair and associated plastic bags and plastic bottles etc. The Ministry will also take initiative in developing skills among potential work-force in the region on sewage pipe line laying works, plumbing works, construction of toilets, civil masonry works, waste collection and its disposal activities (in scientific manner) and training on other health and safety aspects during construction activities. It will also take initiative in conducting a survey in the region for identifying the possible skill development activities in addition to above in conjunction with National Mission for Clean Ganga.

The MoU will remain in effect for a period of three years. Thereafter, it can be extended as mutually agreed by both the Ministries.

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Moodys: Global speculative-grade default rate down again in Q2 2017
Jul 14,2017

Moodys global trailing 12-month speculative-grade default rate closed at 3.2% in the second quarter of 2017, down from 3.9% the prior quarter and 4.7% a year ago, Moodys Investors Service says in its latest global monthly default report. The US speculative-grade default rate, meanwhile, fell to 3.8% in the second quarter from 4.7% in the first quarter, while the European rate edged up to 2.8% from 2.5% over the same period.

Globally, the year-to-date corporate default tally rose to 50 in the past quarter after 28 Moodys-rated companies defaulted. Defaults remained concentrated in the US in Q2 2017, with 18 US companies defaulting, as compared to 8 companies in Europe. Notably, the oil and gas and retail sectors were the biggest contributors of the quarters defaults, with five in each sector.

Despite some concerns about distressed retailers, overall credit conditions remain benign as indicated by the low unemployment rates and high yield spreads, observed Sharon Ou, a Moodys Vice President.

Looking ahead, Moodys expects the global speculative-grade default rate to finish 2017 at 2.7%, before continuing its descent to reach 2.4% a year from now. In the US, Moodys expects the default rate to close the year at 3.1%, down from 3.8% currently, while in Europe the rate is expected to fall to 2.3% from its current 2.8% during the same period.

Across sectors, Moodys expects the Media: Advertising, Printing & Publishing sector to see the highest default rate in the coming 12 months, followed by retail, in both the US and Europe.

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Fitch Assigns Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank AAA; Outlook Stable
Jul 14,2017

Fitch Ratings has assigned the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) a Long-Term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of AAA and a Short-Term IDR of F1+. The Outlook is Stable.

KEY RATING DRIVERS

The ratings of AIIB are based on its existing and expected intrinsic strengths. Created in 2015, AIIB has been endowed with a substantial capital base which, in Fitchs view, will support the projected rapid expansion in lending; exposure to risk will be mitigated by a comprehensive set of policies and by high quality governance. AIIB enjoys an excellent level of liquidity and should benefit from easy access to capital markets.

The aaa intrinsic rating reflects Fitchs long-term projections for capitalisation, risks and liquidity indicators, based on the banks business plan. Capitalisation is assessed as Excellent, as the 80 existing member states have committed to subscribe USD100bn of capital, of which USD20bn will be paid-in. As the bank expands its operations - the loan portfolio should reach USD50bn by 2027 - the equity to assets ratio will progressively erode, but will remain above the 25% threshold consistent with our Excellent capitalisation assessment.

Risks are expected to remain Low. Based on the banks strategy and policies, Fitch anticipates that the average rating of the loan portfolio will be around BB over the 10-year forecast period. Approximately 60% of the loans will be extended to sovereign-backed borrowers, and will benefit from the preferred creditor status of AIIB, a common feature of multilateral development banks (MDBs). Concentration risk is assessed as Moderate. Given the internal limits set by the bank, the ratio of the 5 largest exposures to total banking exposures will progressively decrease and should be below 50% by 2027. AIIB will invest in some equity participations but, over time, they will account for less than 5% of the banking portfolio.

Based on discussions with management, Fitch expects AIIB to pursue conservative policies, and to maintain a very low exposure to market risks, in line with peers. However, risk management policies are assessed as Moderate, as a number of limits have not been yet been set explicitly, and the model to compute economic capital has yet to be finalised. The lower limit for the credit quality of liquid assets is A, which is not conservative relative to AAA peers. However, given the quality of the management team overall and their stated commitment to a conservative approach, Fitch expects AIIBs liquidity policy to be managed prudently.

Liquidity is assessed as excellent, reflecting the very large liquidity buffer set by the bank, which should remain above 150% of short-term debt in the forecast period. According to AIIBs internal policy, liquid assets must cover at least 40% of annual cash requirements, which is in line with peers. Although the minimum rating level for treasury investment is A, Fitch expects that at least 50% of assets will be invested in assets rated AA- or higher.

AIIBs business profile is assessed as Medium risk, which translates into a one-notch uplift for the intrinsic rating. AIIB operates in a high-risk operating environment, evidenced by the relatively low credit quality of its countries of operations. This is offset by the Low risk business profile of the bank, stemming from its high governance standards, clear strategy and well-controlled exposure to the private sector.

No credit uplift is granted for support. The average rating of key shareholders - China, India, Russia and Germany, which together own 54% of capital - is A-; once the bank has reached its target size, net debt will not be covered by callable capital rated A+ and above. Nonetheless, the propensity of member states to provide extraordinary support is deemed Strong.

RATING SENSITIVITIES

The Outlook on the IDR is Stable. The factors that could, individually or collectively, lead to a negative rating action are:

- Lending growth more rapid than anticipated, leading to the equity to assets ratio falling below 25%, which would likely exert a negative impact on our Excellent assessment of AIIBs capitalisation ratio.

- Deterioration in expected asset quality leading to an average rating of B+ or lower or a marked increase in the impaired loan ratio.

- Longer than anticipated implementation of the risk management policies or any material change to the conservative approach to liquidity and other policies articulated by AIIBs senior management.

KEY ASSUMPTIONS

In its projections, Fitch assumes that capital will be paid-in according to the schedule and that, by 2027, the size of the loan portfolio will reach USD50bn with an average rating of BB. Additionally, any impaired loans will be 100% provisioned, the liquidity ratio will cover more than 150% of short-term debt, and consist of investment-grade assets, with at least 50% of them invested in AAA/AA assets or bank placements.

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As per the Third Advance Estimates, food production increased to 273 million metric tonnes: Shri Singh
Jul 14,2017

Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister, Shri Radha Mohan Singh said only through cross-pollination of expertise and innovations and thereafter synergy during implementation of the programs conceived we would be able to achieve the goal set for the country by Prime Minister, through his farsightedness, of doubling farmers income by 2022.

Shri Radha Mohan Singh said as per the Third Advance Estimates food grain production in the country has increased to 273 MT in 2016-17, oil seeds to 32.5 MT, and sugarcane to 306 MT. Fruits & Vegetable production has increased to 287 MTs, according to the Second Advance Estimate. He said that there has been a record production of food grains in 2016-17 and all previous records were broken.

Shri Singh said farmers have not been getting the corresponding increase in remuneration. The Government is seized of the urgent requirement of strengthening market systems to reduce post-harvest losses to enable farmers to tide over both situations of bumper production leading to a glut and abrupt price fall and incidences of less production resulting in the availability of meagre marketable surplus.

Union Agriculture Minister said the approach adopted encompasses both adoptions of cost effective production and diversifying agriculture towards growing of high-value crops, agroforestry, rearing of livestock, poultry, fisheries, etc, as well as creating accessible and efficient markets to ensure better price realisation to the farmers through a robust value supply chain. We empathise with the farmers and for that purpose have formulated farmer welfare centric programs and policies, which is equally related to food security and price security.

Shri Singh said in order to address the constraints of present agricultural marketing system promoted by APMCs and assure accessible marketing facilities to farmers, the Government has shared a corrective reform with the States and we have been able to move faster on this front in the last 2-3 years since the circulation of model APMC Act, 2003 to the States.

Union Agriculture Minister informed that the model Agriculture Produce and Livestock Marketing (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2017 was released to the States on April 24, 2017, and has received a positive response regarding its adoption from all States. Shri Singh said my Ministry is seized with the consolidation of the Mandis integrated by way of total transition to online bidding and payments so that the envisaged benefits reach the farmers and traders both. Shri Radha Mohan Singh said the aim is to bring markets closer to the farms along with appropriate storage, grading and sorting facilities to reduce transportation costs, distress sale as well as the number of intermediaries so that farmers can get a larger share. Shri Singh said an important step that States could take in this regard is the declaration of the warehouses/silos/cold storages, etc as market sub-yards so that the farmers can store surpluses and sell directly without having to transport the produce to the APMC yard. He said the government is in discussion with Warehousing Development and Regulatory Authority (WDRA) on synergy with our programs so that the farmers can also avail pledge financing against the produce stored in scientific WDRA compliant warehouses.

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Govt. to adopt & implement automobile standards in developed countries to reduce pollution levels: Nitin Gadkari
Jul 14,2017

With a view to significantly bring down pollution levels, the government has decided to adopt and implement in totality the automobile standards in developed countries, union minister for shipping, road transport and highways, Mr Nitin Gadkari said at an ASSOCHAM event.

n++Yesterday itself we have decided to appoint a consultant to study all automobile standards for both fuel and vehicle in countries like Germany, France, UK, Sweden and implement it on the same lines in India,n++ said Mr Gadkari.

Talking about the need and scope for reforms in logistics sector, Mr Gadkari said that though India has a total road length of about 52 lakh kilometres (kms), out of this national highways length accounted for only 96,000 kms.

n++About 40 per cent of countrys total traffic was plying on two per cent roads thereby leading to problems like increase in pollution and accidents,n++ he said.

n++We had thus decided to increase national highways length to two lakh kilometres and I am pleased to inform that till date we have declared 1.75 lakh kms of road-length as national highway and in next three years we plan to shift 80-85 per cent of countrys total traffic on four per cent of national highways,n++ added Mr Gadkari.

Highlighting the various other initiatives of the government, he said that while cement-concrete roads are being constructed, they are also being widened so that heavy 20-30 tonne trucks can ply on the same. Besides, efforts are being made to shift logistics parks out of town.

n++All these initiatives are aimed at reducing pollution levels, promote industrial development, bring down costs, generate employment, increase economic growth and boost exports,n++ said the union minister.

n++We are looking into the successful practices employed internationally and willing to adopt the same, besides we are also willing to reform our technology and think out of box,n++ he added.

He also said that government is looking towards promoting use of cost effective, import substitute, pollution free and indigenous technology as such thrust is being laid upon use of electric vehicles and green fuel like ethanol.

n++We are going to bring in a policy to promote use of alternative fuel which is indigenous and pollution free as it will help in saving lot of time, bring down logistics cost by 4-6 per cent which is currently about 14-18 per cent unlike in China where it is 10-12 per cent and in European countries where it is 12-14 per cent,n++ said Mr Gadkari.

The union minister also said that he has proposed it to the Uttar Pradesh (UP) chief minister, Yogi Adityanath to promote use of ethanol as an alternate fuel in all types of bus services in the state, be it within cities or regional transport from district to district as UP leads India in ethanol production.

He added that improving the condition and promoting use of public transport is also the governments priority.

n++We are planning to start double-decker, air-conditioned, executive-class bus services connecting metro cities like Delhi-Jaipur, Delhi-Chandigarh, Delhi-Shimla, Delhi-Ludhiana and others,n++ said Mr Gadkari.

n++Providing robust electric public-transport across India is one of our dreams and we are constantly working on the same by bringing new and innovative models, accepting fuel standards and changing automobile related laws,n++ he said further.

He also said that such an initiative is aimed at discouraging people from using their own vehicles. n++The pace at which the number of cars is rising across India, we might have to add another lane on roads which is likely to cost us heavily.n++

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Import of Vegetable Oils up by 15% in June 2017
Jul 14,2017

Import of vegetable oils during June 2017 is reported at 1,344,868 tons compared to 1,169,456 tons in June 2016 i.e. up by 15%, as per the data compiled by The Solvent Extractors Association of India of Vegetable Oils (edible & non-edible) for the month of June 2017. It consists of 1,293,777 tons of edible oils and 51,091 tons of non-edible oils.

The overall import of vegetable oils during first eight months of current oil year 2016-17, Nov.16 to June 17 is reported at 9,863,572 tons compared to 9,763,043 tons, more or less of the last year.

Currently, Soybean, Rapeseed & Groundnut being sold below MSP and prices have dropped between 20% to 30% of last year level. The current prices is the lowest in the last five years and farmers are totally discouraged to sow the oilseeds and may switch over to Cotton and other cash crops. With a view to ensure farmers do not loose interest in oilseeds cultivation, SEA has strongly suggested to Central Government to raise the import duty on crude oil to 20% and refined oil to 35% with immediate effect.

The stock of edible oils as on 1st July, 2017 at various ports is estimated at 738,000 tons (CPO 270,000 tons, RBD Palmolein 150,000 tons, Degummed Soybean Oil 160,000 tons, Crude Sunflower Oil 140,000 tons and 18,000 tons of Rapeseed (Canola) Oil) and about 1,540,000 tons in pipelines. Total stock at ports and in pipelines increased to 2,278,000 tons from 2,160,000 tons in June, 2017. Indias monthly requirement is about 17.50 lakh tons and operate at 30 days stock against which currently holding stock over 22.78 lakh tons equal to 39 days requirements.

During Nov.16 - June 17, Import of refined oil (RBD Palmolein) has sharply increased to 1,903,056 tons from 1,777,839 tons in the same period of last year, while Import of crude oil decreased to 7,708,902 tons from 7,892,977 tons during the same period of last year.

During Nov.16 - June 17, Palm Oil import has increased to 5,921,563 tons from 5,605,473 tons during the same period of last year, overall share of palm oil products increased to 62% from 58%, thanks to larger import of RBD Palmolein. Soft Oils import reduced to 3,690,395 tons from 4,064,343 tons last year, however, within soft oils, import of sunflower oil has sharply increased at the cost of soybean oil.

Import of Non-edible oils during Nov..16 - June 17 is reported at 251,614 tons compared to 93,227 tons during the same period last year. P.F.A.D., P.K.F.A.D., C.P.S. & RBD Palm Stearin are the major import of non-edible oils.

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Sale of old jewellery by an individual to a jeweller will not make the jeweller liable to pay tax under reverse charge mechanism on such purchases
Jul 14,2017

Section 9(4) of the CGST Act, 2017 mandates that tax on supply of taxable goods (gold in this case) by an unregistered supplier (an individual in this case) to a registered person (the jeweller in this case) will be paid by the registered person (the jeweller in this case) under reverse charge mechanism. This provision, however, has to be read in conjunction with section 2(105) read with section 7 of the said Act. Section 2 (105) defines supplier as a person supplying the goods or services. Section 7 provides that a supply is a transaction for a consideration by a person in the course or furtherance of business.

Even though the sale of old gold by an individual is for a consideration, it cannot be said to be in the course or furtherance of his business (as selling old gold jewellery is not the business of the said individual), and hence does not qualify to be a supply per se. Accordingly, the sale of old jewellery by an individual to a jeweller will not attract the provisions of Section 9(4) and jeweller will not be liable to pay tax under reverse charge mechanism on such purchases. However, if an unregistered supplier of gold ornaments sells it to registered supplier, the tax under RCM will apply.

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NLM assistance to improve availability of quality feed and fodder , risk mitigation & extension, skill development & training for livestock sector
Jul 14,2017

Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister, Shri Radha Mohan Singh said Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries is implementing National Livestock Mission (NLM) for sustainable development of Livestock Sector, especially for poultry, goats, sheep, pig, pack animals, etc.

Shri Radha Mohan Singh said NLM provides assistance to improve availability of quality feed and fodder, risk mitigation and extension, skill development and training for livestock sector including cattle and buffaloes. The livestock rearers and farmers, especially women, are unorganised, as these activities are primarily backyard in nature. However, rearing small ruminants, backyard poultry, pigs and other minor livestock offers tremendous opportunities for improving both nutritional and livelihood security of livestock rearers with specific scientific interventions.

Shri Singh said one of the reasons for setting up NLM from scheme-mode to mission-mode is to provide the necessary flexibility to all States and UTs in undertaking appropriate interventions suited to their conditions. Taking into account the overall requirement of the livestock sector, there is a need to augment resources for the sector and synergise activities through appropriate convergence, under the umbrella of NLM to supplement the efforts of the States and UTs to take care of the activities which cannot be accommodated within other ongoing schemes.

Shri Radha Mohan Singh said all components under the NLM are made flexible and modular, looking into the needs of farmers and stake holders, and as per the geographical and regional requirements so that even the small and marginal farmers can also avail the benefits of the activities proposed under NLM. The distribution of resources and subsidies are also made equitable with considerations for APL, BPL beneficiaries and beneficiaries of North Eastern Region, Hilly, Left Wing Extremism areas so that the beneficiaries in more disadvantageous position get equitable benefits for sustainable livelihood.

The National livestock Mission is organised into the following four sub-Missions:

i. Sub-Mission on Livestock Development

ii. Sub-Mission on Pig Development in North-eastern Region

iii. Sub-Mission on Fodder and Feed Development

iv. Sub-Mission on Skill Development, Technology Transfer and Extension

Shri Singh said close alignments of the guidelines is mandatory for the smooth execution of various programs and effective implementation of interventions.

NLM last three years achievements and milestones are as follows:

n++ 32,981 Beneficiaries have been assisted under Entrepreneurship Development & Employment Generation (EDEG).

n++ 3.68 lakh beneficiaries funded for assistance under Rural Backyard Poultry Development.

n++ 35.64 lakh animal insurance has been under taken.

n++ 3.00 lakh Goat and 9.80 lakh pig has been given health support.

n++ 41 state Poultry /Sheep/ Goat Piggery Breeding Farms have been supported.

n++ 54,930 Chaff Cutter has been distributed.

n++ 96,321 Qtls seed has been distributed.

n++ 3823 silage units have been established.

n++ Organization of 519 Livestock Mela has been supported.

n++ 223 Livestock Farmers Group and 121 Farmers Field School has been established & 8420 Farmers have been covered under exposure visit.

Milestones achieved under the Leadership of Honble Agriculture & Farmers Welfare Minister

n++ The Risk Management and Insurance as a component of Sub-Mission on Livestock Development of National Livestock Mission (NLM) is implemented in all the District of the Country instead of 300 selected District earlier.

n++ All animals are now covered such as indigenous/crossbred milch animals, Pack animals (Horse, Donkey, Mules, Camels, Ponies and Cattle Buffaloes male) and other livestock (Goat, Sheep, Pigs, Rabbit, Yak and Mithun instead of only milch animals earlier.

n++ The benefit of subsidy has been enhanced and is restricted to 5 cattle unit per beneficiary per household, in case of Goat, Sheep, Pigs and Rabbit one cattle unit is equal to 10 animals instead of only 2 milch animals per household earlier.

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Forecast Regarding Rapid Rise in Water Levels of Rivers in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, UP and Gujarat
Jul 14,2017

Rainfall forecast issued by India Meteorological Department for the next 3 days indicate that Heavy to Very Heavy rainfall at a few places with isolated extremely heavy falls in East and West Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat during the period 13th to 16th July 2017.

Due to this rivers Narmada, Ken, Betwa, Chambal and its tributaries, Mahi, Sabarmati are likely to receive significant water flows in Madhya Pradesh, UP, Rajasthan and Gujarat.

Presently, river levels are below Warning Level but due to this rainfall forecast there is likelihood of rapid rise in water levels in various basins as indicated below:

Narmada Basin in the districts of Hoshangabad, Betul, Raisen Sehore, Khandwa, parts of Khargone, Dewas, Indore and Dhar, west Nimar, Jhabua in Madhya Pradesh, Dhulia, Narmada, Bharuch and parts of Vadodara districts in Gujarat.

Ken Basin in the districts of Jabalpur, Sagar, Damoh, Panna, Satna, Chhatarpur and Raisen districts of Madhya Pradesh and Hamirpur and Banda districts of Uttar Pradesh.

Betwa Basin in the districts of Tikamgarh, Sagar, Vidisha, Raisen, Bhopal, Guna, Shivpuri and Chhatarpur of Madhya Pradesh and Hamirpur, Jalaun, Jhansi and Banda districts of Uttar Pradesh.

Chambal Basin in districts of Indore, Ujjain, Ratlam, Mandsaur and Neemuch in Madhya Pradesh, Kota and Jhalawar districts in Rajasthan.

Mahi Basin in districts of Jhabua, Dhar, Ratlam in Madhya Pradesh, Udaipur, Dungarpur and Banswara district in Rajasthan and Panchmahal Mahisagar and Kheda districts of Gujarat.

Sabarmati Basin in districts of Udaipur, Sirohi, Pali and Dungarpur in Rajasthan Sabarkanta, Mehsana, Ahmadabad Gandhinagar and Kheda districts of Gujarat.

Inflows into dams in Chambal, Betwa, Mahi and Sabarmati basins may also increase very rapidly but since there is sufficient storage available in the reservoirs, releases if any may be done judiciously taking into account the downstream rainfall conditions and river positions.

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