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India signs First Loan Agreement with NDB for US$ 350 million for Development and Up-gradation of Major District Roads Project in MP
Mar 31,2017

The Loan Agreement for New Development Bank (NDB) financing of US$ 350 Million for Development and Up-gradation of Major District Roads Project in Madhya Pradesh (MP) was signed between Government of India and the New Development Bank (NDB). This is the First Loan Agreement for NDB assisted project in India.

The Loan Agreement was signed by Mr. Raj Kumar, Joint Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs (DEA) on behalf of the Government of India and Mr. Xian Zhu, Vice President & Chief Operating Officer on behalf of the New Development Bank. The Project Agreement was signed by Mr. Pramod Agrawal, Principal Secretary, Public Works Department and Mr. Manish Rastogi, Managing Director, Madhya Pradesh Road Development Corporation (MPRDC), on behalf of Government of Madhya Pradesh.

The objective of the Project is upgradation of major district roads in the state of Madhya Pradesh to improve connectivity of the interior areas of the state with the national and state highway networks. The Project would include upgradation, rehabilitation or reconstruction of approx. 1,500 (One thousand Five Hundred Only) km of district roads to intermediate lane, all-weather standards, with road safety features and improved road asset maintenance & management. The project outcome is to improve transport connectivity to the interior regions and resultant boost to economic activity in the rural hinterland.

The project implementation is 5 years. Government of Madhya Pradesh and the MPRDC are the implementing agencies.

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Memorandum on Pilot Project for Electronic Cargo Tracking System to facilitate transit cargo movement between India and Nepal to be signed
Mar 30,2017

A Memorandum of Intent (MOI) on India-Nepal Electronic Cargo Tracking System (ECTS) Pilot Run will soon be signed by the Governments of India and Nepal to facilitate movement of traffic-in-transit belonging to Nepal from the port of arrival in India to Nepal. The India-Nepal pilot aims to demonstrate the benefits, especially in terms of reduced costs, of the ECTS system.

The pilot project will be supported by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) under the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Trade Facilitation Strategic Framework, and its success will serve as the basis for its use in other SASEC corridors as well as in inland movement of cargo.

Currently clearance is done through physical inspection and it is time-consuming as well as costly for business. The MOI will include use of Electronic Cargo Tracking System (ECTS) to follow the cargo (containers and full-body trucks) as it moves from port of arrival through India, to the Nepal border. ECTS will lead to reduced cost and time as it speeds up cargo clearance at border crossings.

Electronic Cargo Tracking System uses technology such as satellite positioning systems, cellular communications, radio frequency (RF) identification, web-based software and others, to ensure the security of cargo and avoid any interference in transit.

ECTS pilots have already been done along the Kolkata-Jaigaon-Phuentsholing route between India and Bhutan, and for inland transshipment in India.

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Environment Minister Launches Online Filing of Access and Benefit Sharing Applications
Mar 30,2017

Taking yet another important step towards contributing to and promoting Digital India and Ease of Doing Business, Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Anil Madhav Dave, launched the online filing of Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) applications through videoconferencing, here today. Emphasising that the meaning of good governance lies in making processes transparent, Shri Dave said that the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, inspires everyone to embrace E-governance. The Environment Minister expressed the hope that E-governance will be made 100% operational in the near future and all the processes of the Ministry will be made fully transparent.

Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Ajay Narayan Jha, said that digital technology must be accessed not only to promote Ease of Doing Business, but also to facilitate transactions for the general public. Shri Jha expressed the hope that NBA will put all the other processes in a digital format, so that the people who used these services are served in a better manner.

The National Biodiversity Authority (NBA), teamed up with the National Informatics Centre (NIC), to launch the Online Filing of Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) Applications at - www.nbaindia.org - to enable E-filing of applications. Applications seeking such approval are to be made on the appropriate forms available online. If Indian or foreign individuals and entities like registered companies wish to access biological resources and associated knowledge to carry out various activities, prior approval of NBA, or the State Biodiversity Boards is a pre-requisite. NBA will adhere to stipulated timelines to process applications. With the process being made online, the attempt is to address these issues better and also to keep pace with digitisation.

The online portal is in sync with the Governments policy of n++Digital Indian++. The NBA website hosts the detailed procedure to be observed for filing of applications, the key information required and information regarding the supporting documents that are to be filed by applicants. This online process is user-friendly and has salient features such as editing, reviewing, printing, digital signature, online payment of fee. These features are expected to considerably reduce the processing time of applications. For any new user, the portal provides a step-by-step guide, right from choosing the relevant form, to submission. Tool tips/pop up messages are provided to assist the applicants in filling up the columns in the application. The portal also provides the facility for making online payment of application fee before submission of the application. Once the online portal is fully operational, it is expected to ease the submission of application and speed-up the process of granting approvals by NBA. As part of n++Digital Indian++ policy, Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) will also accept online application, which will help in tracking applications and reducing delays.

The primary factor to be ascertained before filing any application in NBA is to identify whether the applicant is dealing with a biological resource, as defined by the Biological Diversity Act. Applications are scrutinized at different levels, before the Authority decides to grant approval. Till date, over 1, 600 applications have been received and 980 applications have been cleared. A total of 440 agreements have been signed by the NBA with the applicants, which is construed as an approval.

In the past, a large number of applications could not be processed, as they lacked important information/documents needed for scrutiny.

The National Biodiversity Authority (NBA) is a statutory body established under the provisions of the Biological Diversity Act (2002). NBA performs facilitative and advisory functions for the Government of India on issues of conservation, sustainable use of biological resources and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the use of biological resources.

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The MCA has undertaken a major reform in the regulation of combinations under the Competition Act, bringing India in line with the global practice
Mar 30,2017

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) has undertaken a major reform in the regulation of combinations under the Competition Act, bringing India in line with the global practice. The Act which was passed by Parliament in 2002 had initially provided for notice of combinations to be given by enterprises, as per Section 5 of the Act, on a voluntary basis. However, this Section was amended in 2007 making the notice mandatory.

In 2011, in response to concerns expressed by various stake holders, the Government had issued a notification exempting an enterprise, whose control, shares, voting rights or assets are being acquired has either assets of the value of not more than Rs. 250 crores in India or turnover of not more than Rs. 750 crores in India from the applicability of Section 5 of the Competition Act, 2002, for a period of 5 years. These limits were enhanced to Rs. 350 crores and Rs. 1000 crores, respectively, in March, 2016.

It was, however, noted by the Government that the said notification was being applied to Combinations which resulted only from acquisition but was not extended to Merger/Amalgamation and Acquiring of Control Cases. It was also noted that where only a segment/portion/business of an enterprise was being combined with another enterprise, the relevant assets and turnovers attributable to the target segment/portion/business were not being considered and instead the transferors total assets and turnover were being considered for determining the applicability of the exemption.

Stakeholders had been voicing their concerns over the issue and in keeping with the Governments principle of Minimum Government and Maximum Governance, the Ministry has issued fresh notifications No. S.O. 988 (E) and No. S.O. 989(E) dated 27.03.2017 wherein, the Central Government intends to provide

(i) Clarity on the applicability of the threshold exemption limits to all forms of combinations as referred under Section 5 of the Act.

(ii) Clarity on the methodology to be adopted for calculating the relevant assets and turnover of the target when only a portion or segment or business of one enterprise is being combined with another.

With the issue of these notifications, combinations falling within the threshold limits would not require to be filed before the Competition Commission of India. The reform is in pursuance of the Governments objective of promoting Ease of Doing Business in the country and is expected to make India a more attractive destination for Foreign Direct Investment. The notification is expected to enable greater freedom to industry in taking legitimate business decisions towards further accelerating Indias economic growth.

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Steps Taken to Improve The Efficiency of Coal Based Thermal Power Plants
Mar 30,2017

The Government has taken several measures to improve the efficiency of coal based thermal power plants & improve the air quality in the vicinity of these plants. These are as follows:-

i) Supercritical technology has already been adopted for thermal power generation. The design efficiency of Supercritical units is about 5% higher than typical 500 MW subcritical units and these (supercritical) units are likely to have correspondingly lower fuel consumption and CO2 emissions in ambient air. A capacity addition of 39,710 MW based on supercritical technology has already been achieved and 48,060 MW of supercritical is in the pipeline.

(ii) All Ultra Mega Power Projects (UMPPs) are required to use supercritical technology.

(iii) Coal based capacity addition during 13th Plan shall be through super-critical units.

(iv) Indigenous research is being pursued for development of Advanced Ultra Supercritical Technology (A-USC) with targeted efficiency improvement of about 10% over supercritical unit. Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research (IGCAR), NTPC and BHEL have signed an MoU in August 2010 for development of 800 MW A-USC indigenous demonstration plant with main steam pressure of 310 kg/cm2 and temperature of 710/ 720 deg C.

(v) A capacity of about 7751.94 MW of old and inefficient unit has already been retired till date.

(vi) To facilitate State Utilities/IPPs to replace old inefficient coal based thermal units with supercritical units, Ministry of Coal, Government of India has formulated a policy of automatic transfer of LOA/Coal linkage (granted to old plants) to new (proposed) super-critical units.

(vii) Perform Achieve and Trade (PAT) Scheme under National Mission on Enhanced Energy Efficiency is under implementation by BEE (Bureau of Energy Efficiency). In PAT cycle-II, individual target for improving efficiency has been assigned to 154 thermal power stations.

(viii) High efficiency Electrostatics Preceptor (ESP) are installed to capture Particulate Matters (Fly ash) from Flue gases.

(ix) Low NOX burners are installed for reducing NOx emission from flue gases.

(x) SO2 emission control is achieved through dispersion of flue gases through tall stacks (275 metres) to reduce the concentration of polluting gases at ground level.

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Gujarat far ahead of other States in construction of houses for urban poor
Mar 30,2017

Gujarat is far ahead of other States in construction of affordable houses for urban poor under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) launched by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi on June 25, 2015. In Gujarat, 25,873 houses have so far been built for the benefit of urban poor accounting for 32% of the total 82,048 such houses built under PMAY(Urban) in 30 States and Union Territories.

Gujarat is followed by Rajasthan with 10,805 houses constructed so far (13.17% of total), Karnataka-10,447 (12.70%), Tamil Nadu- 6,940 (8.00%), Maharashtra-5,506 (6.70%), Uttar Pradesh-3,822 (4.65%), Madhya Pradesh-2,666 (3.%), Bihar-2,409 (2.90%), Jammu & Kashmir-1,986 (2.42%) and Andhra Pradesh -1,650 houses accounting for 2% of the total houses so far built.

City-wise, Ahmadabad led others with construction of 10,183 followed by Jaipur-7,434, Surat-5,216, Rajkot-3,817, Bengaluru-3,428, Vadodara-1,665, Gaya-1,334, Tumkur(Karnataka)-1,286, Chennai-1,279, Gulbaraga(Karnataka)-1,203, Jamnagar(Gujarat)-1,111, Dhanbad-1,156, Visakhapatnam-1,094,Alwar(Rajasthan)-883 and Rai Bareli (UP)-802.

Under PMAY(Urban), beneficiaries belonging to Economically Weaker Sections. Low Income Groups and Middle Income Groups under the components of In-Situ Slum Redevelopment, Affordable Housing in Partnership, Beneficiary Led Construction and Credit Linked Subsidy Scheme.

Central assistance of up to Rs.1.00 lakh is provided for each dwelling unit to be built for the benefit of slum dwellers using land as resource there by slum dwellers getting new pucca houses free of cost. Central assistance of Rs.1.50 lakh per each beneficiary is provided under AHP and BLC components while interest subsidy of 6.50% is extended under CLSS for LIG and interest subsidy of 3% and 4% under recently announced CLSS for Middle Income Groups.

During the last three years, 3.55 lakh affordable houses have been constructed for urban poor including those sanctioned under JNNURM prior to March, 2014.

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Centre to build 1 crore houses under PMAY-G by 2019
Mar 30,2017

The Government today said that it has approved the construction of 1 crore houses with the financial implication of Rs. 81,975 crore for the period 2016-17 to 2018-19. As per provisional figures of Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011, approximately 4 crore rural households face housing deprivation. After accounting for the houses that were constructed under Indira Aawas Yojana, IAY and State sponsored housing schemes since 2011, it has been estimated that 2.95 crore more houses, with an anticipated variation of n++ 10%, would need to be constructed to achieve the objective of Housing For All by the year 2022.

In the first phase (from 2016-17 to 2018-19) one crore houses are targeted for construction under Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana-Grameen, PMAY-G. Targets for the remaining period (till 2022) will be decided after verification and finalisation of permanent wait lists, based on SECC 2011 data by all States/UTs. To provide technical support in achieving the targets of n++Housing for Alln++ a National Technical Support Agency (NTSA) for Rural Housing shall be set up at the national level.

To achieve the objective of Housing for All various features have been incorporated into the scheme architecture of PMAY-G, some of which are as below:

(i) Availability of sufficient financial resources both in the form of budgetary support and borrowing from NABARD to meet the expenditure for construction of houses.

(ii) Electronic transfer of assistance under Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) to resolve problems of delayed payments and expedite completion.

(iii) Comprehensive online monitoring through the scheme MIS-AwaasSoft.

(iv) Inspection and Geo tagging of houses, through the mobile app- AwaasApp by beneficiaries to reduce delays.

(v) Increasing number of trained rural masons through Training, Assessment and Certification.

(vi) Setting up of Programme Management Unit (PMUs) at state and sub state level to review progress on a daily basis, provide requisite technical support and facilitation and plug gaps in implementation using administrative funds available under the scheme.

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Fitch: Indian Telcos Tower Sales are Credit Positive
Mar 30,2017

Indian telcos plans to sell tower assets or stakes in tower subsidiaries should provide headroom to allow data-related capex with less strain on companies credit metrics, Fitch Ratings says. Bharti Airtel Limited (BBB-/Stable) announced yesterday that it has sold a 10.3% stake in its tower subsidiary, Bharti Infratel for USD952 million to KKR and Canada Pension Investment Board. Bharti will retain a 61.7% stake in Infratel.

We expect Infratels stake sale will benefit Bhartis March 2017 FFO-adjusted net leverage, which we forecast to be around 1.8x-2.0x (FY16: 1.8x; excluding USD5bn in deferred spectrum costs) - slightly below the threshold above which we may consider negative rating action. Bharti will use the proceeds to pay down some debt and to fund its USD235 million 2,300MHz spectrum acquisition from Tikona Digital in five Indian telecom coverage areas, or circles. Bharti had earlier acquired 43MHz of 1800MHz spectrum from Telenor India in seven circles to enhance its 4G spectrum portfolio.

Vodafone India and Idea Cellular, which are merging, also intend to sell Ideas 11% stake and Vodafone Indias 42% stake in Indias largest independent tower company, Indus Towers, which is a joint venture between Bharti, Vodafone India and Idea.

Such a sale would help reduce the debt at the Vodafone India-Idea combined entity. With a sale - and assuming opex and capex synergies - we estimate the combined entitys net debt/EBITDA should improve to around 3.0x-3.2x (pro forma 4.4x) with net debt of USD16.1 billion. Idea and Vodafone India intend to contribute about USD7.9 billion and USD8.2 billion of debt, respectively, to the combined entity. For the 12 months ending December 2016, the combined entity, on a pro forma basis, generated revenue of USD12.2 billion or 40% revenue market share - and USD3.6 billion in EBITDA.

Reliance Communications Limited (Rcom, B+/Rating Watch Negative) is in the process of selling 51% of its tower business - Reliance Infratel Ltd (Infratel) - for USD1.6 billion, and intends to use the proceeds to pay down debt. However, the sale will not be sufficient to ease Rcoms financial stress, given its high indebtedness and plan to merge its wireless operations with Aircel Limited; we do not foresee FFO-adjusted net leverage reducing to below 4.5x for the foreseeable future.

We continue to have a negative outlook on the Indian telecom sector as competition will continue to remain high, and consolidation is not likely to return any pricing power to the operators in the near term. The entry of Reliance Jio, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL, BBB-/Stable), has accelerated industry consolidation. The ongoing consolidation is likely to leave four larger operators - Bharti, Jio, the combination of Vodafone India and Idea, and the combined Rcom and Aircel Limited.

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Govt asks industry to work for July 1 roll out of GST: Finance Secretary Mr Ashok Lavasa
Mar 30,2017

India Inc should work for the July 1 roll out of the Goods and Services Tax , which would take the country into very exciting phase of tax administration, Finance Secretary Mr Ashok Lavasa said at an ASSOCHAM Managing Committee meeting.

Mr Lavasa said We should all work towards July 1, if it gets achieved. He said along with the government, the industry should organise training sessions for the trade and industry for the roll out of the new tax reforms.

The Chamber President Mr Sandeep Jajodia informed the Finance Secretary that the ASSOCHAM has already held over 55 conferences in different parts of the country on GST.

Dwelling on a host of issues, the Finance Secretary also allayed concerns that the fear of vigilance probes is coming in the way of the banks resolving the problem of the non-performing assets (NPAs). The honest bank officers have nothing to worry about and the existing laws provide them ample scope for finding a way out of the bad debt problem, Mr. Lavasa.

n++I dont know whether there can be a law which can make people fearless. If you take honest decisions you dont have to fear three n++s or 10 n++, Mr Lavasa said in response to concerns from the industry leaders that senior bankers are not willing to show courage in reaching settlements with the troubled units as they have a lurking fear of Central Vigilance Commission, CBI or CAG .

The Finance Secretary said If you take honest decisions you dont have to fear. Financing documents and rules of the game provide scope to sit with the banks in the interest of investment.

He said efforts are on to save projects which have run into rough weather because of events beyond control of individuals or industries. The problem of the NPAs of the banks is restricted to a few sectors but it has to be resolved.

The Finance Secretary said the focus of the government is to efficiently spend increased outlays on public and infrastructure projects , including MNREGA which is run with greater efficiency or Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) schemes. As much as Rs 34,000 crore has been saved so far by implementing DBT in 78 schemes. Things like Aadhar seeding and inter-linkage of different schemes has helped plug the pilferages and bogus claimants.

The ASSOCHAM President said there was a need for expeditious capital spending on public sector and infrastructure projects including roads, highways and railways.

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Moodys Assigns Baa3 to SBIs USD note drawdown
Mar 30,2017

Moodys Investors Service, (Moodys) has assigned a Baa3 rating to State Bank of Indias (SBI, Baa3 positive, ba1) proposed USD denominated senior unsecured notes, issued under its US$10 billion Medium-Term Note (MTN) program. The drawdown will be carried out from its London branch, and the bonds will be listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange.

The outlook on the ratings, where applicable, is positive.

The senior debt rating is subject to receipt of final documentation, the terms and conditions of which are not expected to change in any material way from the draft documents reviewed by Moodys.

RATINGS RATIONALE

The Baa3 foreign currency senior unsecured MTN debt rating is anchored on SBIs ba1 baseline credit assessment (BCA) and Moodys assessment of the likelihood of a very high level of support from the Indian government (Baa3 positive) in a stressed situation.

SBIs BCA of ba1 is underpinned by the banks solid franchise as Indias largest bank by assets and deposits, as well as its strong core earnings (pre-provisioning profits) profile and stable capital levels. While SBIs underlying asset quality has stabilized, the BCA also takes into consideration residual asset quality issues as a result of delayed recognition, and the associated impact of high credit costs on the banks profits as it devotes resources to rebuilding its provisioning coverage.

The banks final Baa3 rating incorporates a one-notch uplift due to Moodys assumption of the banks very high level of support from the Indian government in a stressed situation. The assumption of high support is based on a combination of its large size and critical role in Indias payment system, representing around 16.3% of system loans and 17.6% of system deposits as of end-March 2016, its nationwide reach, and the governments 60.18% stake in SBI.

What Could Change the Rating - Up

SBIs senior unsecured debt and deposit ratings could be upgraded if the India sovereign rating (Baa3, positive) is upgraded.

What Could Change the Rating - Down

SBIs BCA could face downward pressure if: (1) its NPL ratio increases substantially from current levels; and/or (2) if its core earnings fall and impacts its ability to support an increase in credit costs. Additionally, any indications that support from the Government of India has diminished, or that additional capital requirements may arise beyond the governments budgeted amount, could put the banks ratings under pressure. Any downward changes in the sovereigns ceilings could also affect the banks ratings.

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Allocation of Funds for Fame India Scheme
Mar 30,2017

The Government has not allocated 14,000 crores for the FAME India Scheme for promoting hybrid and electric mobility vehicles;

Under Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid and) Electric Vehicles (FAME-India) Scheme of the Government, demand incentives are being extended to all vehicle segments i.e. 2 - Wheelers, 3-Wheeler Auto, Passenger 4-Wheeler Vehicles, Light Commercial Vehicles and Buses.

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Retirement Facilities for Employees Resigned from CPSEs
Mar 30,2017

Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) issued OM No. W-02/0017/2014-DPE(WC) dated 01.02.2017 clarifying the term n++technical formality clausen++ as mentioned in point xvi) of OM No. W-02/0017/2014-DPE (WC) dated 21.05.2014. This has no effect on the provisions of the OM dated 21.05.2014.

In term of para vii) read with para x) of Department of Public Enterprises (DPE)s OM dated 21.05.2014, any employee resigning from service of CPSEs and joining another CPSE having broadly similar schemes of pension and post superannuation medical benefit the entire amount of employers and employees contribution along with interest accrued thereon would be transferred to such CPSE. The services rendered in CPSEs prior to resigning would also be counted for the schemes. Thus, these provisions are available even prior to issue of the OM dated 01.02.2017 on Technical formality.

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India becomes Net Exporter of Electricity for the first Time
Mar 29,2017

As per Central Electricity Authority, the Designated Authority of Government of India for Cross Border Trade of Electricity, 1st time India has turned around from a net importer of electricity to Net Exporter of electricity. During the current year 2016-17 (April to February 2017), India has exported around 5,798 Million Units to Nepal, Bangladesh and Myanmar which is 213 Million units more than the import of around 5,585 Million units from Bhutan. Export to Nepal and Bangladesh increased 2.5 and 2.8 times respectively in last three years.

Ever since the cross border trade of electricity started in mid-Eighties, India has been importing power from Bhutan and marginally exporting to Nepal in radial mode at 33 kV and 132 kV from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. On an average Bhutan has been supplying around 5,000- 5500 Million units to India.

India had also been exporting around 190 MW power to Nepal over 12 cross border interconnections at 11kV, 33kV and 132 kV level. The export of power to Nepal further increased by around 145 MW with commissioning of Muzaffarpur (India)- Dhalkhebar(Nepal) 400kV line (being operated at 132 kV) in 2016.

Export of power to Bangladesh from India got further boost with commissioning of 1st cross border Interconnection between Baharampur in India and Bheramara in Bangladesh at 400kV in September 2013. It was further augmented by commissioning of 2nd cross border Interconnection between Surjyamaninagar (Tripura) in India and South Comilla in Bangladesh. At present around 600 MW power is being exported to Bangladesh.

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AAI, DRDO and Govt. of Jharkhand Signed a Tripartite MoU for Development of Deoghar Airport in Deoghar district of Jharkhand
Mar 28,2017

Airports Authority of India, Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and Govt. of Jharkhand signed a tripartite MoU for development of Deoghar Airport in Deoghar district of Jharkhand. The existing Deoghar Airport will be developed for operations of A-320 and C-130 Aircraft. Signing of MoU took place in a ceremony held at the CM Residence.

The Govt. of Jharkhand has acquired 600.34 acres of land which will be handed over to AAI apart from the existing 53.41 acres Deoghar Airport land. D.R.D.O, Govt. of Jharkhand and AAI will provide Rs. 200 Crores, Rs. 50 Crores respectively to develop, operationalize and maintain the airport. The time frame given to develop and operationalize the Deoghar Airport is two years.

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Value of Output of Milk at Current Prices Rs.5,00,405 Crore in 2014-15
Mar 28,2017

As per National Account Statistics Report, 2016, the value of output of milk at current prices was Rs.5,00,405 crore in 2014-15, while at constant prices (2011-12) it was 3,89,846 crore. As compared to last year, the growth in value of output of milk is about 7.4 percent at constant prices.

As per National Dairy Development Board, it is estimated that out of total milk production 46% is consumed locally, and 54% is marketable surplus. The share of organized sector in the total marketable surplus of milk is about 30%, while the balance 70% is handled by the unorganized sector. Of the total organized liquid milk market, the cooperatives and private dairy sector have almost equal share.

The GDP estimates of milk industry are not available separately, although, the contribution of livestock sector to the countrys GDP is about 4 percent. Also, the share of value of output of milk group in the total livestock sector is about 67%.

Dairy is an important source of additional income for the farmers. Availability of milk processing facility and other infrastructure will benefit the farmers through value addition. A large number of milk processing units set up under the Operation Flood Programme has since become old and obsolete. A Dairy Processing and Infrastructure Development Fund would be set up in NABARD with a corpus of Rs. 8,000 crores over 3 years. Initially, the Fund will start with a corpus of Rs. 2,000 crores.

Currently milk cooperatives convert about 20% of milk procurement into conventional & other Value Added Products.

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