On November 10, 2017, Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved following initiatives and bilateral agreements.
Cabinet approves MoU between India and Philippines on agriculture and related fields
This MoU will strengthen bilateral cooperation in the field of agriculture and will be mutually beneficial to India and Philippines.
- It envisages cooperation in the fields of rice production and processing, dryland farming systems, multi cropping system, bio-organic farming, soil fertility, water conservation and management, sericulture, livestock improvement and agro forestry.
- Joint Working Group comprising equal number of representatives from both countries will be constituted to carry out activities outlined in this MoU.
Quick Facts about Philippines:
- Capital – Manila
- Currency – Philippine peso
- Current President – Rodrigo Duterte
Cabinet gives nod to Double Taxation pact with Hong Kong
Union Cabinet has approved agreement between India and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) of China for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to taxes on income.
- Section 90 of the Income Tax Act, 1961, authorises Central Government to enter into such agreements with foreign countries/regions for avoidance of double taxation of income and for exchange of information for the prevention of evasion or avoidance of income-tax chargeable under the Income-tax Act, 1961.
- This agreement with Hong Kong, will not only prevent double taxation and provide for exchange of information between the two Contracting Parties, but will also improve transparency in tax matters and will help curb tax evasion and tax avoidance.
Cabinet approves amending DTAA with Kyrgyzstan
On November 10, 2017, Union Cabinet gave its approval for the protocol amending the agreement between India and Kyrgyz Republic for the avoidance of double taxation and the prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income.
- Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) between India and Kyrgyz is in force since 2001.
- This protocol amending Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) aims to update the provision for ‘Exchange of Information’ between India and Kyrgyzstan to international standards.
Quick Facts about Kyrgyzstan:
- Capital – Bishkek
- Currency – Som
- Current Prime Minister – Sapar Isakov
Cabinet approves Joint Interpretative Declaration between India and Colombia
Union Cabinet has given its approval for signing the Joint Interpretative Declaration (JID) between India and Colombia regarding the existing agreement for the Promotion and Protection of Investments between both the countries.
- The existing Agreement for the Promotion and Protection of Investments between India and Colombia was signed on November 10, 2009.
- In general, JDIs provide clarity to the interpretation of the existing agreement between countries and play an important role in strengthening the investment treaty regime.
- This JDI between India and Colombia includes interpretative notes on definition of investment, definition of investor, Fair and Equitable Treatment (FET), Most Favoured Nation (MFN) treatment and National Treatment (NT).
Quick Facts about Colombia:
- Capital – Bogota
- Currency – Colombian peso
- Current President – Juan Manuel Santos
Cabinet approves continuation and Restructuring of National Rural Drinking Water Programme
Union Cabinet has given its approval for continuation and restructuring of National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) with an objective to make it outcome-based and competitive.
More information about Restructuring of National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP):
- NRDWP covers all the Rural Population across India. It will now continue till March 2020.
- For the Fourteenth Finance Commission (FFC) period 2017-18 to 2019-20, Rs. 23,050 crore has been approved for NRDWP.
- Restructuring NRDWP will make it flexible, result-oriented and competitive which will consequentially ensure good quality service delivery to the rural population.
Cabinet approves formation of 2nd National Judicial Pay Commission for Subordinate Judiciary
2nd National Judicial Pay Commission will be headed by J P.Venkatrama Reddi, Former Judge of Supreme Court of India. R. Basant, a Former Judge of the Kerala High Court is the Member of the Commission.
- The commission will examine the present structure of emoluments (including variety of allowance and benefits) and conditions of service of Judicial Officers in the States and Union Territories (UTs).
- It will come up with a framework that would govern pay structure and other emoluments of Judicial Officers belonging to the Subordinate Judiciary of India.
- The Commission will make its recommendations to the State/UT Governments within a period of 18 months.
Cabinet approves utilisation of pulses from the buffer stock to meet nutrition demand
Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved to utilize part of stock of pulses in the buffer maintained by the Department of Consumer Affairs, for meeting the protein component under various schemes of Central Government aimed at providing nutrition to various target groups/beneficiaries.
- It is to be noted that Central Government has been maintaining buffer of up to 20 Lakh MT as a tool for market intervention to curb market manipulation and provide cushion against price rise to consumers.
- This decision has been taken to ensure adequate supply of nutrients/pulses under the various schemes/programmes of Government including Mid Day Meal (MDM) scheme.
- All concerned Ministries/Departments have been empowered to make necessary changes in their schemes to enable them to take/provide pulses from the buffer.