Wednesday, January 4, 2017

French Pavilion at the New Delhi World Book Fair 2017

Dear Journalist ,
The Embassy of France in India, in association with its cultural wing, Institut français India (IFI), is pleased to welcome you to the
French Pavilion at the New Delhi World Book Fair 2017
held at Pragati Maidan, Hall 7AtoC, stall numbers 1 to 6,
from 7-15 January 2017.
Along with promoting French books, Institut français India promotes Indo-French intellectual dialogue and exchange through a series of events titled “The Other Thought: French-Indian Encounters in Creativity and Innovation.”
The New Delhi World Book Fair is a major calendar event in the publishing world. This year France also holds the prestigious position of also being Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair (Oct 17). In this regard, Institut français India is holding two major events in collaboration with the German Book Office:
GlobaLocal : France at the Frankfurt Bookfair 2017. 10th January
From 2 to 4 pm at Corners Events, Hall 7A, Pragati Maidan.
Open to all. (rsvp:
Illustrated Books: A Professional Meet. 7th January
From 6:30 pm at Oxford Bookstore, Connaught Place (invite only. Rsvp:
You are kindly requested to attend and/or assign a reporter and photographer to cover the event.
Best regards,
Press Liaison Officer
Institut français India

Major Initiatives and Achievements of Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion – 2016

The Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion is responsible for formulation and implementation of promotional and developmental measures for growth of the industrial sector, keeping in view the national priorities and socio-economic objectives. While individual Administrative Ministries look after the production, distribution, development and planning aspects of specific industries allocated to them, Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion is responsible for the overall Industrial Policy.
In line with the stated objectives of the DIPP the major initiatives and achievements made in the year 2016 were :
· FDI Policy Reforms for Economic Growth
· Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Policy formulated
· National Industrial Corridor Development & Implementation Trust (NICDIT) to provide for integrated development of Industrial corridors
· Incentives under Make in India & Start-up India
1. Foreign Direct Investment
Consolidated FDI Policy Circular of 2016:
§ The ninth edition of this series was released on 7th June, 2016, incorporating all FDI policy amendments carried out since the release of last FDI Circular i.e. since May 12, 2015.
§ It has been made simpler and investor friendly; and will serve as a ready reference for foreign investors on various provisions of the FDI policy.
Policy Reforms :
§ To further supplement domestic capital, technology and skills, for accelerated economic growth, DIPP announced FDI policy reforms on 20th June, 2016. The policy amendments became effective from the date of release of the press note i.e. 24th June, 2016.
§ The reforms inter-alia include FDI beyond 49% in Defence under approval route and 100% FDI for e-commerce in Food Products manufactured/ produced in India under approval route.
§ Government vide Press Note 6 (2016) dated 25.10.2016 reviewed FDI policy on Other Financial Services and NBFCs.
§ Foreign Investment in financial services activities regulated by financial sector regulators will be 100% under the automatic route.
§ In financial services, which are not regulated by any financial sector regulator or where only part of the financial service activity is regulated or where there is doubt regarding regulatory oversight, foreign investment upto 100% will be allowed under the government approval route
Inflows :
§ The total FDI inflows received during the last financial year (2015-16) at US$ 55.6 billion, an increase of 23% compared to the previous financial year (US$ 45.1 for 2014-15), has been the highest ever for any financial year till date.
§ During the current financial year, The FDI inflows during April-October, 2016-2017 stood at US$ 27.82 billion as compared to US$ 21.87 billion in April-October 2015-2016.
§ Manufacturing constitute around 41.5% of the equity inflows while non-manufacturing around 58.5% (during April 2014 to Sept 2016)
2. Intellectual Property
Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Policy:
§ In May, 2016, Government for the first time adopted a comprehensive National Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) policy to lay future roadmap for intellectual property.
§ This aims to improve Indian intellectual property ecosystem, hopes to create an innovation movement in the country and aspires towards “Creative India; Innovative India” “रचनात्मक भारत; अभिनव भारत”.
§ Objective of this policy is to increase IPR awareness; stimulate generation of IPRs; have strong and effective IPR laws; modernize and strengthen service-oriented IPR administration; get value for IPRs through commercialization; strengthen enforcement and adjudicatory mechanisms for combating IPR infringements; and to strengthen and expand human resources, institutions and capacities for teaching, training, research and skill building in IPRs.
§ Subsequent to the approval of this policy, a Cell for Intellectual Property Rights Promotion and Management (CIPAM) has been created as a professional body which will be working under the aegis of DIPP for addressing the 7 identified objectives of the Policy.
§ MOU in the field of Intellectual Property signed with U.K, Singapore and E.U
§ India-USA Workshop on Protection of Trade Secrets organized by CIPAM.
§ Trademarks filing increased by around 10% and Trademark examination increased by around 250% during FY16 till Nov vis-à-vis FY15.
§ Trademark pendency has come down to 3 months and to be 1 month by March 2017
3. Industrial Infrastructure
National Industrial Corridor Development & Implementation Trust (NICDIT):
§ Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor Project Implementation Trust Fund (DMIC-PITF Trust) is now re-designated with an expanded mandate of integrated development of Industrial Corridors.
§ This would be an Apex body under administrative control of DIPP for coordinated and unified development of all industrial corridors in the country.
§ It will channelize Govt. of India (GoI) funds as well as institutional funds for development of corridors. It will coordinate all central efforts for the development of Industrial Corridor projects and will also monitor their implementation.
§ Total outlay has been increased to Rs. 17,550/- for the period now extended up to 31SI March, 2022.
· Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor:
§ Approval of Construction of trunk infrastructure for Phase II of Part I of Shendra Bidkin Industrial Area (SBIA) namely the Bidkin region spread across 31.79 sq km (3,179.20 ha) at an estimated project cost of Rs. 6,414.21 crore.
§ Investment of Rs. 2,397.20 crore as 49% equity of DMIC Trust in the City/ Node SPV in a phased manner; and issuance of EPC tenders for selection of contractors for various packages of trunk infrastructure in a phased manner.
§ Development of the SBIA as a manufacturing hub will generate a series of direct and indirect benefits through employment, development of ancillary units and spin-off of socio-economic benefits.
· Modified Industrial Infrastructure Upgradation Scheme (MIIUS) :
§ Under this Scheme, projects have been undertaken to upgrade infrastructure in existing Industrial Parks/ Estates/ Areas. Greenfield Projects can also be undertaken in backward areas and North Eastern Region (NER) with a Central Grant upto 50% of the project cost with a ceiling of ₹ 50.00 crore.
§ Final approval has been accorded to 24 projects with central grant amounting to ₹ 604.71 crore and 6 projects with central grant of ₹ 129.91 crore are at ‘in-principle’ approval stage. Central assistance of ₹ 181.92 crore has been released to 22 projects as on 31.10.2016.
· Support to Industry
· Indian Leather Development Programme:
§ One of the major activities under Indian Leather Development Programme is to provide placement linked skill development training to unemployed youth.
§ As against the target of providing training to 1.44 Lakh persons during 2016-17, 60,705 unemployed persons have been trained out of which 48,752 trainees have been employed in leather and footwear industry.
§ For augmentation of institutional infrastructure, assistance has been provided for establishment of two new branches of Footwear design and development Institute (FDDI) at Banur (Punjab) and Ankleshwar ( Gujarat ).
§ Approval has been given for setting-up Mega leather Cluster (MLC) at Nellore , Andhra Pradesh with GOI assistance of Rs 125 crore.
4. Investment Promotion
4.1 Make In India :
§ On completion of two years of ‘Make In India’ initiative, sector achievement reports in respect of eleven sectors viz. Power, Mining, Automotive, Telecommunication, Textile & Apparel, Electronics & IT, Skill Development, Leather and Port & Shipping Tourism and Food Processing have been released during the year.
· Ease of Doing Business:
§ The World Banks’ Doing Business 2017 report shows that for the first time the absolute score of ‘Distance to Frontier’ that measures the gap between India and the global best practice has increased for two consecutive years. It has improved by 2.5% from 55.27 to 53.93 over a period of last one year.
§ A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between India and UK to support Ease of Doing Business in India . A national conference on Ease of Doing Business was organized with support from Government of UK to disseminate the best practices
§ Through constant efforts, States too have been brought on board in the process to expand the coverage of these efforts. The rankings of the States/UTs based on 340-Point Business Reform Action Plan released on 31st October 2016, show that national implementation average of reforms undertaken by States/UTs stands at 48.93%, significantly higher than last year’s national average of 32%.
§ It also shows that 12 States scored more than 90 % as against none last year
4.2 Start-up India :
§ Fund of Funds for Startups: `129 crore committed by SIDBI to Venture Funds
§ Notification issued by RBI allowing Foreign VCs to invest in equity or equity linked or debt instrument issued by an Indian startup without RBI approval
§ Notification issued for Relaxed Norms of Procurement in Government Departments and CPSUs
§ Funds for 10 Startup Centers released and 9 Technology Business Incubators approved
§ Establishment of Atal Tinkering Labs: NITI Aayog has announced a list of 257 schools
· Incentives for Industries of North East and Himalayan States
§ North East Industrial and Investment Promotion Policy, 2007 revised with notification on 22nd Nov, 2016 for resumption of registration process for new industrial units that had commenced production on or after 01.12.2014.
§ Committee headed by CEO, NITI Aayog to suggest a roadmap for a new industrial policy for the region.
· International Cooperation-
§ Korea Plus- It is a special initiative to promote and facilitate Korean Investments in India . It was operationalized on June 18, 2016 comprises of a representative from the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Energy, Government of the Republic of Korea and representative from Korea Trade Investment and Promotion Agency (KOTRA) and three representatives from Invest India.

ESCAP Newsletter, January 2017

UNSG call for global unity on his first day

The new UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres has said he wants to shake up the global body and get all 193 member nations to come together to solve the terrible problems the world is facing.
Speaking on his first day at UN headquarters after taking the organization’s reins from Ban Ki-moon, Guterres called for unity among nations to deal with the challenges facing the world even as he said he is no miracle maker. Urging all citizens, Governments and leaders to strive to overcome differences, the former Portuguese Prime Minister and UN refugee chief said, peace must be the goal and the guide.
He said, conflicts are multiplying and interlinked, and have triggered the new phenomenon of global terrorism. Guterres told UN staff and diplomats at a welcome ceremony that the United Nations needs to be able to respond to the aspirations, concerns and anxieties of people around the world.

US Manufacturers Review Investments in Mexico

US manufacturers are reviewing their investments in Mexico in apparent response to criticism by President-elect Donald Trump. Trump says US companies are shipping jobs to Mexico.
Ford Motor on Tuesday announced that it will cancel a plan to spend 1.6 billion dollars to build a new plant in Mexico. Instead, the carmaker said it will expand development at a US plant to create 700 jobs there.
Ford said that this is because demand is declining for compact models it had planned to build.
But analysts say Ford was responding to Trump’s repeated criticism of US companies for moving their production to Mexico due to cheap labor and lack of tariffs under NAFTA.
Trump on Tuesday threatened General Motors with high tariffs on its products made in Mexico.
He wrote on Twitter that GM is sending a Mexican-made model of Chevrolet Cruze to US car dealers tariff-free across border. He wrote “make in US or pay big border tax!”
GM countered that Cruze sedans sold in the US are domestically made, and only a small number of Cruze hatchbacks are imported to the US from Mexico.
A US air conditioner maker has withdrawn its plan to move its production to Mexico.
US lawmakers voted today to retain congressman Paul Ryan as speaker of the House of Representatives, making him a critical player in Congress as Donald Trump prepares to assume the presidency.
House members voted 239 to 189 to re-elect Ryan to the key post over the top Democrat, former speaker Nancy Pelosi. Five lawmakers voted for other figures.
Ryan will lead the 115th Congress, which gaveled into session today 17 days before Trump’s inauguration.

EC announces poll dates for five state Assembly Elections

Election Commission today announced the dates for the assembly elections in five states
Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Manipur and Goa.
Uttar Pradesh, big state, go to polls in seven phases for 403 seats on 11th February, 15th February, 19th February, 23rd February, 27th February, 4th March and on 8th March.
Manipur will go to polls for 60 seats in two phases on 4th and 8th March.
There will be single phase elections in Uttarakhand, Goa and Punjab. Goa and Punjab will go to polls on February 4th.
The polling in Uttarakhand for 70 seats will be held on 15th February.
Counting of votes for all five states will take place on 11th March.
Announcing the poll dates Chief Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi said over 16 crore voters are eligible to vote in the five states.
With the Election Commission announcement the Model code of conduct has come into effect from today.
Mr. Zaidi said, 100 per cent voters will have ID cards as well as photo slip. Apart from this, one lakh eighty five thousand polling stations would be set up to facilitate the voters and e-voting would also be introduced in few assembly constituencies. Mr. Zaidi said for the first time ever, photo of candidates in EVMs would be available in the forthcoming assembly elections.
He said,1.85 lakh polling stations to be in operation for Assembly Elections to the five states. The commission will also set up all women managed polling stations.
The limit for expenses for candidates is 28 lakh rupees for Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Uttarakhand and 20 lakh rupees for Manipur and Goa.
Mr Zaidi said, Commission will keep a eye on paid news. He said candidates will have to spend over twenty thousand rupees through cheques or accounts and will also have to disclose loan amount details. Mr. Zaidi said Election Commission will strictly monitor election expenses by candidates to curb black money.
Replying to a question, Mr Zaidi said Commission is examining representation of some political parties on presentation of Union Budget during poll process. He said the Commission will take a view soon.
On Supreme Court’s decision on use of Religion, Caste and Creed during polling, Mr Zaidi said EC is committed to abide by the apex court’s order and it will be implemented effectively.
Replying to another question, he said, any query on freezing of Samajwadi Party poll symbol is hypothetical right now and the documents have to be examined first.
BSP Chief Mayawati has welcome the announcement of election and said in her press release the party will contest election on her own without any coalition or arrangement of any sort.She further asked the EC to restraint the central government to present the budget on 1 Feb 2016 viz  during election in her release.
Uttar Pradesh, the ongoing power struggle within the Samajwadi Party continues unabated. However, senior party leader Azam Khan has expressed hope that the two leaders will keep all options for dialogue open and jointly fight the assembly polls. Akhilesh had met his father Mulayam twice yesterday but to no avail.
Azam Khan further said that he is ready to approach anyone to keep the Samajwadi Party united. A bitter critic of the Samjawadi Party’s patriarch close aide Amar Singh, Khan is seen as the party’s Muslims face and has so far maintained a neutral profile in public, during the ongoing feud. AIR correspondent reports that Samajwadi Party leaders Ramgopal Yadav, Kiranmoy Nanda and Naresh Agrawal yesterday met the Election Commission, to stake claim over the party symbol ‘bicycle’.
Mulayam along with his brother Shivpal Singh Yadav, Rajya Sabha MP Amar Singh and Jaya Prada, on Monday, met the commission and learnt to have discussed that his faction being the real Samajwadi Party should be allowed to use the symbol.

Rohingya militants attacked military and police outposts in Rakhine

Rohingya are a Muslim minority in predominantly Buddhist Myanmar.
The video footage appeared in public domain may have been filmed by the police and was posted online on Saturday. The clip lasts for less than one minute.
It shows a group of at least 30 villagers being urged to gather together and then being beaten repeatedly with a baton. All of them are shown to be forced to sit on the ground with their hands behind their heads.
The Myanmar government said in a statement on Monday that the footage was filmed in November in a village in the western state of Rakhine.
The government said it had opened an investigation into the matter, and admitted the involvement of the police.
Last October, Myanmar’s security forces launched an offensive after Rohingya militants attacked military and police outposts in Rakhine. But the operation has faced international criticism as there have been allegations of abuse against the Rohingya.

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