On November 22, 2017, Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved following bilateral agreements and initiatives:
Cabinet approves agreement between India and Philippines on co-operation in customs matters
This agreement will not only help in fetching relevant information for the prevention and investigation of Customs offences, but will also facilitate trade and ensure efficient clearance of goods traded between India and Philippines.
- Customs authorities of the India and Philippines will share relevant information and intelligence as per the legal framework provided in the agreement.
- In the draft of this agreement, Indian Customs’ concerns and requirements in the area of exchange of information have been specifically addressed.
Quick Facts about Philippines:
- Capital – Manila
- Currency – Peso
- Current President – Rodrigo Duterte
- Important River – Cagayan River
Cabinet approves India’s Membership for European Bank for Reconstruction & Development
Union Cabinet has approved India’s Membership for European Bank for Reconstruction & Development (EBRD). Department of Economic Affairs under Union Ministry of Finance will now initiate necessary steps to acquire the membership.
- Membership of EBRD would not only enhance India’s international profile but will also promote its economic interests.
- As EBRD’s core operations focus on private sector development in member countries, acquiring its membership would help India leverage its technical assistance and sectoral knowledge for development of private sector within the country.
Quick Facts about EBRD:
- Founded in – 1991
- Location – London, UK
Cabinet approves signing of India – Russia Agreement on cooperation in combating terrorism
This Agreement is proposed to be signed during the visit of Indian Delegation to Russia, led by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh from 27-29 November, 2017.
- This agreement seeks to jointly fight new and evolving security risks and threats. It will replace the Agreement of October 1993.
- It would not only reinforce Indo-Russia relationship through exchange and sharing of information and experience but would also help in curbing terrorism in the region.
Quick Facts about Russia:
- Capital – Moscow
- Currency – Ruble
- Current President – Vladimir Putin
- Important River – Volga
Cabinet approves continuation of the scheme on Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs beyond the 12th Plan Period
Union Cabinet has given its approval for continuation of the scheme on Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs (IICA) for another three financial years (2017-18 to 2019-20).
- Besides, it has also been decided to providing Grants-in-aid of Rs.18 crore to the Institute. Government aims to make IICA a self-sustainable institute by the end of FY 2019-20.
- IICA is a think-tank and repository of data and knowledge which aids in decision-making for the policy makers, regulators and other stakeholders working in areas related to the corporate sector.
- It offers services in the field of corporate laws, corporate social responsibility, corporate governance, accounting standards and investor education.
Cabinet approves revised salaries, gratuity, allowances and pension for the Judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts
Following implementation of recommendations of the 7th Central Pay Commission in respect of Civil Servants, Union Cabinet has approved the revision in the salaries, gratuity, allowances, pension etc. of the Judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts and retired Judges of Supreme Court and High Courts.
- Supreme Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Act, 1958 and High Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Act, 1954 will now be amended to implement this decision.
- The hike in the salary and allowances as per this decision will benefit 31 Judges of Supreme Court of India including the Chief Justice of India and 1079 Judges, including the Chief Justices of High Courts.
- Nearly 2500 retired Judges will also get benefit on account of revision of pension/gratuity etc.
Cabinet approves setting up of the 15th Finance Commission
In order to fulfill the constitutional obligation under Article 280 (1) of Indian Constitution, Union Cabinet has approved the setting up of the 15th Finance Commission. Terms of Reference for the 15th Finance Commission will be notified soon.
- Task of the Finance Commission is to define the financial relations between the central government of India and the individual state governments.
- 14th Finance Commission was set up on January 2, 2013 to make recommendations for the period of five years commencing on April 1, 2015.
- Successive governments have followed the practice to set up next Finance Commission within five years of the date of setting up of the previous Finance Commission.
Cabinet approves Expansion of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao to improve child sex ratio
In a bid to generate a deeper positive impact on child sex ratio across the country, Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has given its approval for expansion of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao yojana for a pan-India reach covering all the 640 districts.
- ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ scheme was launched by the Prime Minister Narednra Modi on January 22, 2015 from Panipat, Haryana.
- It is a comprehensive programme to address the declining Child Sex Ratio (CSR), related issues of women empowerment and enabling girl child education.
- So far, this scheme has been successful implemented in select 161 districts.