Current Affairs Update – 12-14 August, 2017


Hello and welcome to exampundit. Here are the Important Current Affairs of 12, 13 & 14 August, 2017. These are very important for the upcoming IBPS PO, IBPS RRB, OICL AO, UIIC Assistant & NICL Assistant Exams.



Banking & Financial News

Economic Survey Volume II admits achieving 7.5% growth target for this fiscal as tough


  • Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on 11 August 2017 presented the second volume of Economic Survey 2016-17 in both houses of the Parliament. Volume II of the survey was presented on the last day of the monsoon session of the Parliament.
  • The second volume containing updated macroeconomic data was authored by Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian and his team.
  • Volume II of the survey says achieving the high end of the 6.75-7.5 per cent growth projected previously will be difficult due to appreciation of rupee, farm loan waivers and transitionary challenges from implementing GST

Highlights of the Economic Survey 2016-17 Volume-2
Fiscal Developments

  • The fiscal outcome of the Central Government in 2016-17 was marked by strong growth in tax revenue, sustenance of the pace of capital spending and a consolidation of non-salary/pension revenue expenditure. This combination allowed the Government to contain the fiscal deficit to 3.5 per cent of GDP in 2016-17.
  • The Union Budget for 2017-18 opted for a gradual fiscal consolidation path: the fiscal deficit is expected to decline to 3.2 percent of GDP in 2017-2018. The fiscal deficit target of 3 per cent of GDP under the FRBM framework is projected to be achieved in 2018-19.

Monetary Management and Financial Intermediation

  • The Reserve Bank of India cut the policy rate by 50 basis points during 2016-17. However, it shifted its monetary policy stance from accommodative to neutral in February 2017.  As of August 2017, Repo rate stood at 6.00 per cent and reverse repo rate at 5.75 per cent.
  • Monetary aggregates decelerated significantly following the withdrawal of legal tender status of specified bank notes on November 9, 2016. As of 31st March 2017, currency in circulation contracted by 19.7 per cent whereas reserve money contracted by 12.9 per cent.
  • Credit off-take from banks continued to decelerate further. During 2016-17, gross bank credit outstanding grew at around 7 per cent on an average. The average gross bank credit to industry contracted by 0.2 per cent in the FY 2016-17.

Climate Change, Sustainable Development and Energy

  • India ratified the Paris Agreement on 2nd October, 2016. India’s actions for the post-2020 period are based on its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC).
  • India’s NDC targets to lower the emissions intensity of GDP by 33 - 35 per cent by 2030 from2005 levels, to increase the share of non-fossil based power generation capacity to 40 per cent of installed electric power capacity(cumulative) by 2030, and to create an additional carbon sink of 2.5-3 Gt CO2e through additional forest and tree cover by 2030.

External Sector

  • India’s balance of payments situation which was benign and comfortable during 2013-14 to 2015-16, further improved in 2016-17, as a result of low and falling trade and current account deficits and moderate and rising capital inflows, resulting in further accretion of foreign exchange reserves.
  • Reflecting the slowly improving world economic situation, India’s exports turned positive at 12.3 per cent in 2016-17 after an interregnum of two years. This along with a marginal decline in imports by 1.0 per cent resulted in narrowing down of trade deficit to US$ 112.4 billion (5 per cent of GDP) in 2016-17 as compared to US$ 130.1 billion (6.2 per cent of GDP) in 2015-16.

Agriculture and Food Management

  • The average farm size in India is small, and declining since 1970-71. The predominance of small operational holdings is a major limitation to reap the benefits of economies of scale in agriculture operations.
  • The progress in agriculture needs to be evaluated in terms of outcomes such as catching up with global yields of various crops as a means to increase incomes of farmers.

Industry and Infrastructure

  • Industrial performance has shown moderation from 8.8 percent during 2015-16 to 5.6 percent in 2016-17.
  • Industrial growth as per Index of Industrial Production (IIP) new series of 2011-12 shows overall IIP growth at 5 percent in 2016-17 as compared to 3.4 percent last year.
  • The Index of Eight Core Industries growth during 2016-17 was 4.8 percent as compared to 3.0 percent in 2015-16.

Services Sector

  • The services sector remains the key driver of India’s economic growth, contributing almost 62 per cent of its gross value added growth in 2016-17. However, the growth of this sector has moderated to 7.7 per cent in 2016-17 compared to 9.7 per cent achieved in the previous year, though it continues to be higher than the other two sectors and nearly at the top among the 15 major economies.
  • The services growth moderation is mainly due to the deceleration in growth in two services categories- trade, hotels, transport, communication and services related to broadcasting (7.8 per cent), and financial, real estate & professional services (5.7 per cent). The share of services sector in total gross capital formation (GCF), at current prices, has increased consistently over the last four years from 53.3 per cent in 2011-12 to 60.3 per cent in 2015-16.


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Odisha government launches Facebook programme ‘SheMeansBusiness’


  • Odisha Chief Minister, Naveen Patnaik launched Facebook's programme called 'She Means Business' for women entrepreneurs in the state on 10 August 2017.
  • The programme was launched in partnership with Odisha’s micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) department and Project Mission Shakti.
  • Under the scheme, around 25000 women entrepreneurs and Self-Help Group (SHG) members will get training on digital marketing skills by the end of 2018.
  • The training will involve teaching of basic nuances of digital marketing like how to start your business on Facebook, how to make it real-time business, how to give quick response to queries and ensure timely delivery and quality assurance.
  • The social media platform, Facebook, will be monitoring the growth of the MSMEs in Odisha after imparting training to them in the next one year.
  • It will also prepare a data base of the MSMEs through registrations in which they would be taking down the email ids and the mobile phone numbers of entrepreneurs in all the workshops.

News related to India & States

India's first online course on Infusion Therapy launched


  • The Infusion Nurses Society (INS), a global authority in infusion therapy, on 13 August 2017 launched India's first online course on Infusion Therapy for nurses.
  • Under the online course, the Infusion Nurses Society aims to train over 3000 nurses in the vital medical procedure.
  • As per the INS, due to the reach and ease of the digital platform, the course will enable members to access the various infusion therapy modules and presentations through its website.
  • Infusion therapy deals with all aspects of fluid and medication infusion, via intravenous or subcutaneous application.

Indian Coast Guard Ship Shaurya commissioned in Goa


  • The Indian Coast Guard Ship (ICGS) Shaurya on 12 August 2017 was commissioned in Vasco, Goa by Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan.
  • ICGS Shaurya is the fifth in the series of six 105-metre offshore patrol vessels (OPVs).
  • The vessel will be based at Chennai under administrative and operational control of Commander Coast Guard Region (East).
  • The ship will be deployed extensively for Exclusive Economic Zone surveillance, apart from safeguarding India’s maritime interests.
  • At present, the Indian Coast Guard has a fleet of 129 ships and boats, and 72 ships and boats are at various stages of construction at different shipyards in India.

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Appointments

Santosh Sharma appointed CMD of Hindustan Copper Limited


  • Santosh Sharma was today appointed as Chairman and Managing Director of Hindustan Coper Limited (HCL).
  • He is at present Director (Operations) in the HCL.
  • The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved his appointment to the post for a period of five years, an order issued by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) said.
  • Emandi Sankara Rao has been appointed as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of IFCI Ltd.
  • He is at present working as Director and Chief Executive Officer of IIFCL Asset Management Company Ltd.

World News

World Health Organisation declares Somalia free of polio


  • The World Health Organisation (WHO) on 13 August 2017 declared Somalia free of polio. The UN health agency announced that it had not recorded any case of polio disease in Somalia in the last three years.
  • The declaration by WHO keeps Somalia outside the last group of countries which still record cases of polio in the world. Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan are the remaining countries where polio is still being recorded.
  • The WHO stated that Somalia recorded the last case of polio in 2014 in the central part of the country. However, since then it has remained free of the disease.
  • On the other hand, the WHO also warned that Somalia remained vulnerable, calling for continued vaccination campaign.

Sports News

Legendary sprinter Usain Bolt retires, his last race marred by injury


  • Usain Bolt, the greatest sprinter of modern times, retired from the Athletics world on 13 August 2017. But the farewell ended in pain as he injured himself while running the last lap of the men’s 4x100m relay race at the World Athletics Championships in London.
  • While running the final race of his career, the 30-year-old Bolt, after taking the baton from his Jamaican teammate Yohan Blake, suffered cramps on his left hamstring as he tried, in vain, to chase down his rivals in the race.
  • Bolt went down on his keens with hands on his head in dejection and was then lying alone on the tracks for a while before Blake and the other teammates, Julian Forte, Yohan Blake and Omar McLeod, gathered around him.
  • The towering Jamaican, who had dominated the sprint race like nobody else, was helped to his feet. As he limped over the finishing line, the crowd applauded him. Britain won the gold in 37.47 seconds while United States (38.01) and Japan took the silver and bronze respectively.

Days

International Youth Day 2017 observed globally


  • The International Youth Day was observed across the world on 12 August 2017 with the theme 'Youth Building Peace'.
  • This year, the Day is aimed at celebrating young people’s contributions in preventing conflicts and bringing about transformations along with inclusion, social justice and sustainable peace.
  • The International Youth Day was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on 17 December 1999 through its resolution 54/120.
  • The Day came into existence through the recommendation of the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth in August 1998 that 12 August should be declared International Youth Day.

Environment Minister launches ‘Gaj Yatra’ to mark World Elephant Day 2017


  • On the occasion of the World Elephant Day, i.e. on 12 August 2017, the Union Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has launched ‘Gaj Yatra’.
  • Gaj Yatra is a nationwide campaign to protect elephants. The campaign is planned to cover 12 elephant range states.
  • During the period of the campaign, artists and craftsmen will create life-size works on the theme of elephants in places along the route of the roadshow, covering 12 states that have wild elephants, using local art and craft.
  • Specially fabricated vehicles will be deployed to display these on pre-determined routes with campaigners.
  • The ‘Gaju’ mascot, which was released by the Ministry in 2012, will be helm the campaign.
  • The campaign will be led by the Wildlife Trust of India.


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