The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi has approved the following proposals
i. Signing of Guarantees for hosting the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) Under 17 Women’s World Cup 2022 in India.
ii.A project for saturation of 4G mobile services in uncovered villages at a total cost of Rs. 26,316 Crore
iii. Revival package of BSNL amounting to Rs 1.64 Lakh Crore
iv.Signing of MoU between National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj (NIRD&PR) and University of Reading (UoR), UK
v.Additional investment by Bharat PetroResources Ltd. (BPRL)for development of BM-SEAL-11 project in Brazil
vi.The Competition (Amendment) Bill
vii. Egypt and India signed a MoU to build a green hydrogen factory in the Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZONE), Egypt.
Union Cabinet Approves Signing of Guarantees for hosting FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2022 in India
The Union Cabinet, chaired by PM Narendra Modi, has approved the Signing of Guarantees for hosting the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) Under-17 (U-17) Women’s World Cup 2022, which will be held in India between October 11th and 30th, 2022.
- The FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup India 2022 will be the 7th edition of the biennial youth tournament, which will include 16 teams, including India.
- It will be the first-ever FIFA women’s competition to be hosted by India.
FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2022:
i. Financial outlay: A Rs 10 crore assistance to the All India Football Federation (AIFF) for field of play maintenance, stadium power, energy & cabling, stadium and training site branding, will be funded from the budgetary allocation for the Scheme of Assistance to National Sports Federations (NSFs).
- Three locations— Bhubaneswar in Odisha, Navi Mumbai in Mumbai, and Goa—have been suggested by the AIFF as competition match venues.
- From October 6-28, 2017, India hosted the FIFA U-17 Men’s World Cup -2017 at 6 different locations in the country, namely New Delhi (Delhi), Guwahati (Assam), Mumbai, Goa, Kochi (Kerala), and Kolkata (West Bengal).
FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup
The FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup is a FIFA-organized world championship for female players under or up to the age of 17.
- The event began in 2008 and has been held every even-numbered year since then.
- The 6th edition of the event was held in Uruguay from November 13th to December 1st, 2018. Spain has won the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2018.
Union Cabinet Approves a Project for Saturation of 4G Mobile Services in Uncovered Villages at A Total Cost of Rs. 26,316 Crore
The Union Cabinet has approved a Rs. 26,316 crore project for saturation of 4G mobile services in uncovered villages across India.
- The project will be carried out by BSNL using the 4G technology stack of Atmanirbhar Bharat and will be funded by the Universal Service Obligation Fund.
- This project is an integral part of the GoI’s vision “Antyodaya” which includes Digital Inclusion and Connectivity for All.
The GoI has approved a project to roll out 4G mobile services in 7,287 uncovered villages in 44 aspirational districts across 5 states in 2021.
- During his Independence Day speech in 2021, PM Narendra Modi advocated for the saturation of government initiatives.
- The project is a key step toward the GoI’s objective of providing mobile connectivity in rural areas.
- Through mobile broadband, this project would encourage the delivery of various e-governance services, banking services, tele-medicine, tele-education and create jobs in rural areas.
Scope of the Project
i. The project would bring 4G mobile services to 24,680 uncovered villages in difficult and inaccessible areas.
ii.A provision in the project allows 20 % additional villages due to rehabilitation, new settlements, the withdrawal of services by existing operators, etc.
- In addition, 6 279 villages having 2G/3G access will be upgraded to 4G.
Union Cabinet Approves Revival Package of BSNL Amounting to Rs 1.64 Lakh Crore
i.The Union Cabinet, chaired by PM Narendra Modi, approved a Rs. 1.64 Lakh crore Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) revival package to make BSNL financially viable.
- Cabinet approved revival package with three elements such as to improve services, de-stress balance sheet and expansion of fibre network.
- The revival package will enable BSNL to improve services and generate a net profit in next 3-4 years. Its 5G services launch will happen in next 1.5-2 years.
ii.BBNL Merged to BSNL
- The revival measures approved by the Cabinet include infusing new capital into BSNL network by merging Bharat Broadband Nigam Limited (BBNL) with BSNL.BBNL is a Special Purpose Vehicle and has been mandated to create the National Optical Fiber Network (NOFN) in India to provide high-speed broadband connectivity to all gram panchayats.
- BSNL will get an additional 5.67 lakh kilometres of optical fibre which has been laid across 1.85 lakh village panchayats in the country using the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF).
- A cash support of Rs.43,964 crore and non-cash support of Rs.1.20 lakh crore will be part of the revitalization package.
- The revival programme will be for a period of 4 years.
iii. The de-stressing of BSNL’s balance sheet entails Debt Restructuring, under which the GoI would offer sovereign guarantees to these Public Sector Units (PSUs) for raising long-term loans; Financial assistance for AGR dues, and Re-issuance of preference shares, under which BSNL will re-issue preference shares of Rs 7,500 crore to the GoI.
Union Cabinet Approves Signing of MoU Between NIRD&PR and University of Reading (UoR), UK
The Union Cabinet, chaired by PM Narendra Modi, was apprised of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj (NIRDPR) and University of Reading (UoR), United Kingdom (UK) for agricultural and rural development collaboration in developing nations.
- The MoU was signed in March 2022.
This MoU will assist NIRDPR faculty in enhancing their knowledge in the fields of agriculture, nutrition, and rural development as well as building an international professional network.
- Both the institutes together can bring a considerable amount of research expertise in agricultural economics, rural development, livelihoods and nutrition studies that is required for the emerging inter-disciplinary area of research and capacity building.
NIRDPR has been involved with UoR in various research activities in the field of rural development in low and middle income countries, and also in the area of Women and Child Development.
Union Cabinet Approves Additional Investment by BPRL for Development of BM–SEAL-11 Project in Brazil
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), chaired by PM Narendra Modi, has approved an additional USD 1,600 million (about Rs. 12,000 crore) investment by Bharat Petro Resources Ltd. (BPRL), a fully owned subsidiary of Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL), in the development of the BM-SEAL-11 Concession Project in Brazil.
The following was also approved by the CCEA:
i. To raise the limit on BPCL’s equity investment in BPRL and the company’s authorized share capital from Rs. 15,000 crore to Rs. 20,000 crore (to be subscribed by BPCL from time to time).
ii.To authorize an increase of Rs. 10,000 crore in the limit of equity investment by BPRL International BV (in Amsterdam, Netherlands) in International BV BrasilPetroleoLimitada (in Brazil) via intermediate Wholly Owned Subsidiary (WOS) to Rs. 15,000 crore from the current limit of Rs. 5,000 crore.
- The BM-SEAL-11 project is scheduled to begin production in 2026–2027.
- Since 2008, BPRL has been involved in the exploration and development of this project in Brazil.
- Along with Petrobras, the national oil company of Brazil, who is the Operator and holds a 60 % Participating Interest (PI), BPRL owns a 40 % PI in this Concession.
Cabinet Approval for Competition Amendment Bill
The Union Cabinet, led by PM Narendra Modi, has approved a Bill to amend the Competition Act, 2002, with the aim of reforming the competition regulation ecosystem.
- The Competition (Amendment) Bill proposes changes to the governing structure of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) as well as changes to substantive legal provisions to address the needs of new age markets.
- The Bill aims to strengthen competition regulation by closing regulatory loopholes and clarifying legal provisions using the CCI’s adjudicatory experience.
The Competition Act of 2002 was later amended by the Competition (Amendment) Act of 2007 and the Competition (Amendment) Act of 2009.
- The Competition Commission of India (CCI) and the Competition Appellate Tribunal have been constituted in compliance with the terms of the Amendment Act.
Egypt & India Sign MoU to Build Green Hydrogen Factory Worth USD 8 Billion
Egypt and ReNew Power Private Limited, India, have signed an MoU to build a green hydrogen facility in the Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZONE), Egypt.
- According to the MoU, ReNew Power Private Limited would invest USD 8 billion to build a factory capable of producing 20,000 tonnes of green hydrogen each year.
About the Arab Republic of Egypt:
President – Abdel Fattah Saeed Hussein Khalil El-Sisi
Capital – Cairo
Currency – Egyptian Pound (EGP)