Cabinet apprised of MoU between India and Fiji on Cooperation in Renewable Energy
• The Union Cabinet was on February 28, 2018 apprised of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Fiji on cooperation in renewable energy.
• The MoU was signed on May 24, 2017 at Suva, Fiji.
• The MoU seeks to establish a Joint Working Committee to review, monitor and discuss matters in areas of cooperation.
• It provides for exchange of expertise and will help strengthen bilateral cooperation between the two countries.
Cabinet approves MoU between India and Macedonia on cooperation in the field of Health
• The Union Cabinet on February 28, 2018 approved signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Macedonia on cooperation in the field of Health.
• The MoU will enable capacity building and short term training of human resources in the health sector.
• It calls for exchange & training of medical doctors, officials and other health professionals.
• It provides for assistance in development of human resources and setting up of health care facilities.
• A Working Group will be set up to further elaborate the details of cooperation and to oversee the implementation.
Cabinet approves Action Plan for Champion Sectors in Services
• The Union Cabinet approved the proposal of the Department of Commerce to give focused attention to 12 identified Champion Services Sectors for promoting their development, and realizing their potential.
• These include IT & ITeS, Tourism and Hospitality Services, Medical Value Travel, Transport and Logistics Services, Audio Visual Services, Legal Services, Communication Services, Construction and Engineering Services, Environmental Services, Financial Services and Education Services.
• The Cabinet has also directed the Ministries concerned with these sectors to utilize the available draft sectoral plans to finalize and implement the Action Plans for the identified Champion Services Sectors.
• The Ministries will also draft a monitoring mechanism to monitor implementation of these plans under the overall guidance of the Committee of Secretaries (CoS) under Cabinet Secretary.
• A dedicated fund of Rs 5000 crores has been proposed to be established to support initiatives for sectoral Action Plans of the Champion Sectors.
Cabinet approves amendments to Housing and Telephone Facilities Rules
• The Union Cabinet approved amendments to (i) The Housing and Telephone Facilities (Members of Parliament) Rules, 1956 (ii) The Members of Parliament (Constituency Allowance) Rules, 1986, (iii) The Members of Parliament (Office Expense Allowance) Rules, 1988.
• The decision of the Cabinet will be conveyed to the Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowances of Members of Parliament for making amendments in the relevant rules which shall be approved and confirmed by the Chairman of the Council of States and the Speaker of House of the People.
• Additional financial implication on account of the amendments in the allowances will be Rs 39,22,72,800 approximately of recurring expenditure and Rs 6,64,05,400 approximately of non-recurring expenditure.
Cabinet approves MoU between India and Vietnam on Economic and Trade Cooperation
• The Union Cabinet approved the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Vietnam on Economic and Trade Cooperation.
• The MoU would expand more bilateral trade and economic cooperation between India and Vietnam.
CCEA approves doubling of Government guarantee for procurements of pulses and oilseeds at MSP
• The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the regularization and extension of Government Guarantee from Rs 9500 crore to Rs 19000 crore for procurements of pulses and oilseeds at MSP by NAFED under Price Support Scheme (PSS).
• While, for procurement of pulses and oilseeds by Small Farmers Agri-Business Consortium (SFAC), the government guarantee was fixed at Rs 45 crore for meeting their existing liability and settlement of extant claims.
• These Government Guarantees are provided for a period of five years till 2021-22 with waiver of 1 per cent Government Guarantee fee.
CCEA approves continuation of PMEGP beyond 12th Plan to 2019-20
• The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the continuation of Prime Minister's Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) beyond 12th Plan for three years from 2017-18 to 2019-20 with a total outlay of Rs 5500 crore.
• Scheme will create sustainable estimated employment opportunities for 15 lakh persons in three financial years.
• Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) is the nodal implementation agency of the scheme at the national level.
• At the State/district level, State offices of KVIC, Khadi and Village Industries Boards (KVIBs) and District Industry Centres (DIC) are the implementing agencies.
• Applications are invited and processed on-line on PMEGP-e-portal.
• A minimum target of 75 project/district is awarded to all districts of the country to achieve Inclusive Growth.
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