Municipal solid waste based “Gobar-Dhan (Bio-CNG) Plant”
⇒ The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated municipal solid waste based “Gobar-Dhan (Bio-CNG) Plant” in Indore on 19 February 2022.
Indore Clean Energy Pvt Ltd is a Special Purpose Vehicle created to implement the project. It was set up by Indore Municipal Corporation and Indo Enviro Integrated Solutions Ltd (IEISL) under a Public Private Partnership model, with 100% capital investment of Rs.150 crores by IEISL.
- The plant has a capacity to treat 550 tonnes per day of segregated wet organic waste.
- It is expected to produce around 17,000 kg per day of CNG, and 100 tonnes per day of organic compost.
- The plant is based on zero landfill models, whereby no rejects would be generated.
Indore Municipal Corporation will purchase a minimum 50% of CNG produced by the plant and in a first-of-its kind initiative, run 400 city buses on the CNG. The balance quantity of CNG will be sold in the open market.
- The project is expected to yield multiple environmental benefits, viz reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, providing green energy along with organic compost as fertiliser.
- The organic compost will help replace chemical fertilisers for agricultural and horticultural purposes.
- Prime Minister recently launched the Swachh Bharat Mission Urban 2.0, with the overall vision of creating “Garbage Free Cities”.
- The Mission is being implemented under the overarching principles of “waste to wealth”, and “circular economy” for maximising resource recovery – both of which are exemplified in the Indore Bio-CNG plant.
India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) Signature 2022
⇒ The Minister for Commerce & Industry, Textiles, Consumer Affairs and Food & Public Distribution Shri Piyush Goyal addressed the inaugural ceremony of India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) Signature 2022 on 18 February 2022.
- It was organized by the Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
The Minister said the Gems & Jewellery sector is expected to achieve export target of $40 Billion this year. He said the sector is expected to register growth of 6.5% over the pre-Covid levels. G&J sector is a strong pillar of the Indian economy.
- About 850 exhibitors displayed products in over 1,450 booths during the IIJS Signature 2022 exhibition.
- The show attracted over 14,000 pre-registered visitors including more than 400 international visitors, buyers and delegations from the US, UAE, Egypt, Nepal and Uzbekistan.
India-UAE Virtual Summit
⇒ Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan held a Virtual Summit on 18 February 2022. Both leaders expressed deep satisfaction at the continuous growth in bilateral relations in all sectors.
Prime Minister and the Crown Prince issued a Joint Vision Statement “Advancing the India and UAE Comprehensive Strategic Partnership: New Frontiers, New Milestone”.
- The shared objective is to promote new trade, investment and innovation dynamic in diverse sectors, including economy, energy, climate action, emerging technologies, skills and education, food security, healthcare and defence and security.
Major highlights of the Virtual Summit:
» India and UAE signed the historic Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA).
- The India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) was signed by the Minister of Commerce and Industry Shri Piyush Goyal and Minister of Economy of UAE, Abdulla bin Touq Al Marri in the virtual presence of the two Leaders.
- The Agreement will provide significant benefits to Indian and UAE businesses, including enhanced market access and reduced tariffs.
- It is expected that the CEPA will lead to increase in bilateral trade from the current USD 60 bn to USD 100 bn in the next 5 years.
- CEPA will generate 10 lakh jobs across labour-intensive sectors such as Textiles, Gems & Jewellery, Leather, Footwear, Pharma, Agriculture products, Medical Devices, Plastics, Sports Goods and Automobiles.
» The two Leaders also released Joint Commemorative Stamp on the occasion of 75th anniversary of India’s independence and 50th year of UAE’s foundation.
» Two MOUs signed between Indian and UAE entities were also announced during the Summit.
- These are, MOU between APEDA and DP World & Al Dahra on Food Security Corridor Initiative and MOU between India’s Gift City and Abu Dhabi Global Market on cooperation in financial projects and services.
» Two other MOUs – one on cooperation in Climate Action and the other on Education have also been agreed between the two sides.
Loan Agreement between the Government of India, the State Governments of Karnataka and Odisha and the World Bank
⇒ The Government of India, the State Governments of Karnataka and Odisha and the World Bank have signed a loan agreement of $115 million (INR 869 crore) for implementation of “Rejuvenating Watersheds for Agricultural Resilience through Innovative Development” (REWARD) Project.
The loan agreement will help national and state institutions adopt improved watershed management practices to help increase farmers’ resilience to climate change, promote higher productivity and better incomes.
The Government of India has committed to restoring 26 million hectares of degraded land by 2030 and doubling farmers’ income by 2023. Effective watershed management can help enhance livelihoods in rainfed areas, while building a more resilient food system.
Host for the 2023 IOC Session
⇒ Mumbai, India, has been officially elected as the host for the 2023 International Olympic Committee (IOC) session on 19 February 2022.
- This decision was taken by the IOC Members during the 139th Session in Beijing.
After 40 Years, the IOC Session returned to India, such a session (86th edition) was held in 1983 in New Delhi.
Mumbai received a historic 99% of the votes in favour of its bid from the delegates participating in the process, with 75 members endorsing its candidature in the session held at Beijing.