Tough negotiations ahead: experts

Paper: II

Mains: General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations.

Why in News:

Ahead of the crucial talks between military commanders of India and China to resolve the month-long stand-off on the border, experts have expressed caution on the outcome of the discussions, saying it would take some hard negotiations to get China move back to its previous positions and require a diplomatic intervention as well.

Key Details:

  • The first-ever ground level talks at the level of Lieutenant Generals will be held at the Chushul-Moldo border meeting point on the Chinese side.
  • Though talks at various levels have been going on since tensions first started, since the current meeting is at a higher level and the first time such talks are taking place between the top military commanders, some positive movement is expected.

Issues:

  • Defence experts have opined that the meeting between military commanders would be appropriate to resolve a localized incident.
  • The present standoff is much bigger and the decision seems to be taken at a strategic level.
  • The backdrop of the push by China seems to be to reassert its hegemony in the light of other global developments and make India back down on its infrastructure development along the border.
  • Experts have expressed caution on the outcome of the discussions.
  • They believe that the military to military talks will only help ensure that there is no escalation on the ground between the two sides. But see no resolution of the issue from military talks alone which would require negotiations and diplomatic interventions.

Ahead of vote for UNSC seat, India launches campaign brochure

Paper: II

Mains: General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations.

Why in News:

India will highlight international terrorism, United Nations reforms and Security Council expansion, streamlining the world body’s peacekeeping operations and technology initiatives during its upcoming tenure as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) in 2021-22.

Key Details:

India’s membership:

  • India is guaranteed a place in the UNSC as it is the sole candidate for Asia-Pacific (55-nation grouping) and is also expected to sail through with the 129 votes (two-thirds of the 193-member General Assembly) required for the seat.
  • This will be the eighth time India will occupy a non-permanent UNSC seat, with its last stint in 2011-2012.

India’s agenda:

  • India will highlight international terrorism, United Nations reforms and Security Council expansion, streamlining the world body’s peacekeeping operations and technology initiatives during its upcoming tenure as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) in 2021-22.
  • India’s overall objective during this tenure in the UN Security Council will be the achievement of O.R.M.S: A New Orientation for a Reformed Multilateral System to set right the challenge of “Unreformed and under-representative” global institutions.

UNSC:

  • The Security Council consists of five permanent members (China, France, Russian Federation, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and United States of America) and 10 non-permanent members elected by the General Assembly for a term of two years.

Election procedure:

  • The General Assembly elects each year, five non-permanent members of the Security Council.
  • The non-permanent members of the Council should be elected according to the following pattern:
    • Five from African and Asian States;
    • One from Eastern European States;
    • Two from Latin American States;
    • Two from Western European and other States.
  • A retiring member is not eligible for immediate re-election. The election is held by secret ballot and there are no nominations. The non-permanent members of the Security Council are elected by a two-thirds majority

Move fast to ease liquidity, says RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das

Paper: III

Mains: General Studies-III: Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management


Why in news:

  • With economic growth expected to be in the negative territory for the current financial year, Reserve Bank of India Governor Shaktikanta Das emphasized on the need for going full throttle to revive consumption and investment.
  • Given the enormity of a collapse in demand, the need is to move ahead full throttle to ease financing conditions further so as to revive consumption and revitalize investment.

Key Details:

  • With economic growth expected to be in the negative territory for the 2020-2 financial year, the Reserve Bank of India Governor has emphasized on the need for immediate action to revive consumption and investment.

Challenges:

  • With spending patterns having altered drastically away from the discretionary to the essential items, Private consumption is bound to be affected negatively. Private consumption expenditure accounts for a large share of the GDP for India.
  • A key challenge would be to resuscitate domestic demand to avoid any harmful effect on income and employment in the short run and potential growth over the medium term, and for strengthening domestic demand, it is important to revive consumer and business confidence.

Steps taken by GOI:

  • Given the huge collapse in demand, the need is to ease financing conditions further so as to revive consumption and revitalize investment.
  • After cutting interest rates by 75 basis points (bps) in March, RBI has further brought down the repo rate by 40 bps to 4% in May in a bid to revive demand amid a slowing economy.
  • The MPC has decided to remain accommodative as long as it is necessary to revive growth and mitigate the fallout of COVID-19 and monetary policy can inspire confidence among households and businesses to break the vortex of public preference for deposits over spending and banks’ aversion to lend and invest.

RBI creates Rs.500 cr. fund to boost payment infra

Paper: III

Mains: General Studies-III: Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management

Why in News:

The RBI has created a Payments Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) to encourage acquirers to deploy Points of Sale (PoS) infrastructure — both physical and digital modes — in tier-3 to tier-6 centres and north eastern states.

Background:

  • Given the high cost of merchant acquisition and merchant terminalisation, most of the Points of Sale (POS) terminals in India are concentrated in tier 1 and 2 cities and towns and other regions have been left out of the increasing digital payment ecosystem.
  • To provide a fillip to the digitisation of payment systems, it is necessary to give impetus to acceptance infrastructure across the country, more so in under-served areas.

Key Details:

  • The RBI has created a Payments Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) to encourage acquirers to deploy Points of Sale (PoS) infrastructure — both physical and digital modes — in tier-3 to tier-6 centres and north eastern states.
  • The PIDF will be governed through an Advisory Council and managed and administered by RBI.
  • RBI will make an initial contribution of Rs. 250 crores to the PIDF, while the remaining contribution will be from card-issuing banks and card networks operating in the country.

Conclusion:

Over the years, the payments ecosystem in the country has evolved with a wide range of options such as bank accounts, mobile phones, cards, etc. To provide further fillip to digitization of payment systems, it is necessary to give impetus to acceptance infrastructure across the country, more so in under-served areas,