India's Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-F09) successfully launched the 2230 kg South |Asia Satellite (GSAT-9) into its planned Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) today (May 05, 2017). Today’s launch of GSLV was its eleventh and took place from the Second Launch Pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR (SDSC SHAR), Sriharikota, the spaceport of India. This is the fourth consecutive success achieved by GSLV carrying indigenously developed Cryogenic Upper Stage. In its oval shaped GTO, the South Asia Satellite is now orbiting the Earth with a perigee (nearest point to Earth) of 169 km and an apogee (farthest point to Earth) of 36,105 km with an orbital inclination of 20.65 deg with respect to the equator.

Few seconds before the launch countdown reached zero, the four liquid propellant strap-on motors of GSLV-F09, each carrying 42 tons of liquid propellants, were ignited. At count zero and after confirming the normal performance of all the four strap-on motors, the 139 ton solid propellant first stage core motor was ignited and GSLV lifted off at 16:57 IST. The major phases of the flight occurred as scheduled. About seventeen minutes after lift-off, South Asia Satellite was successfully placed in GTO.

. Soon after separation from GSLV, the two solar arrays of the satellite were automatically deployed in quick succession and the Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hassan in Karnataka assumed control of the satellite.

South Asia Satellite is a communication satellite built by ISRO to provide a variety of communication services over the South Asian region. For this, it is equipped with Ku-band transponders.

Following the successful launch, the Honorable Prime Minister of India, Mr. Narendra Modi addressed along with the South Asian leaders. He congratulated ISRO and remarked that today was a historic day for South Asia and a day without precedence. The Prime Minister recalled that two years ago India made a promise to extend the advanced space technology for the cause of growth and prosperity of the people of South Asia and felt that the successful launch of South Asia Satellite today marks a fulfillment of that.

In the coming days, the satellite orbit will be raised from its present GTO to the final circular Geostationary Orbit (GSO) by firing the satellite's Liquid Apogee Motor (LAM) in stages. The South Asia Satellite will be commissioned into service after the completion of orbit raising operations and the satellite’s positioning in its designated slot in the GSO following in-orbit testing of its payloads.

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KSD/NK

Read more: GSLV Successfully Launches South Asia Satellite

Thirty-four MoUs amounting to about Rs 2 lakh crores were signed in the three day India Integrated Transport and Logistics Summit that was concluded in New Delhi today. These MoUs were in the areas of port connectivity, Integrated Check Posts (ICP) in the states of Bihar, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Manipur, access to land port in Tripura, Assam and Mizoram, development of Logistics Parks in Telengana, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat, Mizoram, development and furthering of multi modal logistics parks in Mumbai and Bengaluru and Haryana,  exploring investment opportunities in logistics sector, dredging of inland waterways, implementation of 79 port connectivity projects under Sagarmala, development of port roads to Chennai and Vishakhapatnam ports, and connectivity to airport in Navi Mumbai, among others. Some of these MoUs are between Government agencies while others are between Government to Business and Business to Business.

The Summit was attended by around 3000 delegates from India and abroad, which included central and state government organizations , international organizations like World Bank and ADB, delegates, global transport and supply chain experts and representatives of private companies. The sessions focused on six major themes that included Multi Modal Logistics Parks, New developments in Urban Transportation, Freight Corridors for Economic Development, Supply Chain Transformation- Storage Innovations, GST and Role of Digitization for Decongestion and Standards and Skills for Logistics. Fifty speakers from across the globe shared their views, expertise and experience about developing the logistics and integrated multi modal transport sector in India.

Speaking at the concluding session of the summit, the Minister of Road Transport & Highways and Shipping Shri Nitin Gadkari said that there is an urgent need to bring down logistics cost in the country to globally comparable rates if we hope to achieve double digit growth figures and ensure the welfare of the weakest sections of society. Shri Gadkari said that the summit is a very welcome, first step towards realizing this objective. The participation of both Government and private sector has been very encouraging, he said, and even states from the North East have come forward to sign MoUs. He said the suggestions of all stakeholders will be considered and a road map will be drawn for progress along these lines.

The Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje spoke about the ongoing developments in the transport and logistics sector in her state and welcomed the steps being taken to develop multi modal integrated transport in the country. She said Rajasthan has the highest length of National Highways in the country. Six economic corridors pass through the state. The state has close proximity to the prosperous northern and western regions of the country. Air infrastructure in the state is also good with Jaipur, Jodhpur and Udaipur having full fledged airports. She said multi modal integrated transport and logistics would benefit Rajasthan to a great extent.

Haryana Chief Minister Shri Manohar Lal Khattar also welcomed the organization of the summit and said Haryana is fully capable and prepared to participate in the upcoming transport and logistics revolution in the country. He said the state has a lot of potential to contribute to the growth of warehousing and supply chain logistics. He also informed that the state is working in a big way to enhance and modernize  its transport and warehousing network.

The Ministry also gave away awards to the winners of a contest for designing solar toll plazas.

Click here to see pdf file

 

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UM/NP/MS

 

 

 

 

Read more: MoUs Worth Rs 2 Lakh Crores Signed in the India...

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has extended his greetings and felicitations to the Government and people of Marshall Islands on the occasion of their Constitution Day (May 01, 2016).

In a message to Her Excellency Dr. (Ms) Hilda C. Heine, the President of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the President has said, “On behalf of the Government and people of India and on my own behalf, I extend warm greetings to Your Excellency, the Government and people of the Republic of Marshall Islands on the occasion of your Constitution Day.

Bilateral relations between our two countries are growing stronger.  India’s dialogue with Pacific Island Countries (PIC) under the Forum for India-Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC) through the FIPIC-I Summit held in Suva in November 2014 and FIPIC-II Summit held in Jaipur in August 2015 has given us opportunities to  work together to address issues and challenges currently being faced by Pacific Island  Countries.  India’s initiative in creating a Centre for Excellence in Information Technology and solar electrification of two hundred houses through the efforts of “Solar Mamas” trained in India has been fruitful and has contributed to the diversification of our relationship to include bilateral cooperation in the IT, tele-medicine, tele-education and renewable energy sectors. 

I am confident that the relations between India and the Republic of Marshall Islands will continue to strengthen in the years to come to the mutual benefit of both our peoples.

Please accept, Excellency, my best wishes for your good health and well-being, as well as for the progress and prosperity of the friendly people of the Republic of Marshall Islands”.

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AKT/NT/SBP

Read more: President of India’s message on the occasion of...

Your Excellency, Mr. Nicos Anastasiades, President of the Republic of Cyprus, 

Distinguished members of the Cypriot delegation,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is a great pleasure to welcome you, Mr. President and the distinguished members of your delegation on your first State Visit to India. 

2.India attaches great value to her excellent relations with Cyprus. As young nations that are simultaneously ancient civilizations, we enjoy, today, a bilateral discourse that is historic, broad-based and multi-dimensional, based on our long-standing economic and cultural exchanges. Throughout your country’s struggle against colonialism, India was happy to offer her wholehearted and substantive support. The illustrious Archbishop Makarios, first President of the Republic of Cyprus, and the Founding Fathers of independent India, Mahatma Gandhi and Pandit Nehru regarded each other with high esteem. India has consistently stood for the independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and unity of Cyprus and peaceful resolution of the Cyprus problem - and we shall continue to do so. Excellency, the efforts made by you in finding a lasting solution to the Cyprus issue are indeed  commendable. India is firmly committed to extending our unequivocal support to the Cyprus talks for finding a viable and just solution. Our good wishes are with the Government and the people of Cyprus. 

Excellency,  

3.As modern, independent and democratic nations with many shared values, India and Cyprus have many convergences on regional and global issues. We have been working well together to achieve common objectives in various international fora. India appreciates the consistent support of Cyprus for her legitimate claim to permanent membership of a reformed UN Security Council. India is also thankful for the efforts of Cyprus in support of her entry, as a member, into the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group. 

4.Both our countries have been supportive of each other’s efforts for peace and progress in our regions and the world. Having suffered invasions, occupation, conflict and adversity throughout our history, we both desire peace and stability for our respective peoples to achieve their developmental aspirations. India condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and believes that responsible nations such as ours must continue efforts, with a sense of urgency, to collectively and comprehensively address the dark forces of extremism, terrorism and radicalisation which attempt to weaken the very fabric of democratic, pluralistic and open societies. 

5.Your visit, Excellency, is thus opportune in many ways – primarily as it is taking place at a time when our nations are engaged in intensifying our bilateral co-operation in diverse areas of our common interest. 

6.India lauds the economic recovery of Cyprus under your leadership, particularly its return to a positive rate of growth – among the fastest in the European Union.  In recent years, India has, fortunately, seen rapid economic progress - despite the global slowdown - and achieved a steady growth rate of about 7%. We welcome friends to take advantage of our flagship programmes like ‘Make in India’ and ‘Skill India’ - and join India’s growth story. Our information technology sector as also our renewable energy, natural gas and hydrocarbons, sustainable tourism, infrastructure and health and wellness sectors are open for partnerships and foreign investment.  The recent signing of the revised Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement is a good step in this direction. I am confident, Excellency, that your State Visit will result in new initiatives in all these areas of immense potential. 

7.With these words, I once again thank you for your warm gesture in conferring upon me the Grand Collar of the Order of Makarios-III which I had the honour to accept in the name of the people of India.  It shall long be valued as a symbol of the enduring friendship between India and Cyprus. 

8. I wish you, Mr. President and the members of your delegation a very  successful visit to India. 

9.With these words, Ladies and Gentlemen, I invite you to join me in raising a toast to:-

-the health and well-being of President Anastasiades, President of the Republic of Cyprus;

-to the continued progress and prosperity of the people of Cyprus; and 

-to ever-lasting friendship between India and Cyprus.

AKT/NT

Read more: Speech by the President of India, Shri Pranab...

The summary of the Index of Eight Core Industries (base: 2004-05) is given at the Annexure.

The Eight Core Industries comprise nearly 38 % of the weight of items included in the Index of Industrial Production (IIP).  The combined Index of Eight Core Industries stands at 202.9 in March, 2017, which was 5.0 % highercompared to the index of  March, 2016. Its cumulative growth during April to March, 2016-17 was 4.5 %.

Coal

            Coal production (weight: 4.38 %) increased by 10.0 % in March, 2017 over March, 2016. Its cumulative index during April to March, 2016-17 increased by 3.6 % over corresponding period of previous year.

Crude Oil

            Crude Oil production (weight: 5.22 %) increased by 0.9 % in March, 2017 over March, 2016. Its cumulative index during April to March, 2016-17 declined by 2.5 % over the corresponding period of previous year.

Natural Gas

            The Natural Gas production (weight: 1.71 %) increased by 8.3 % in March, 2017 over March, 2016. Its cumulative index during April to March, 2016-17 declined by 1.1 % over the corresponding period of previous year.


 

 

Refinery Products (93% of Crude Throughput)

            Petroleum Refinery production (weight: 5.94%) declined by 0.3 % in March, 2017 over March, 2016. Its cumulative index during April to March, 2016-17 increased by 5.4 % over the corresponding period of previous year.

Fertilizers

            Fertilizer production (weight: 1.25%) declined by 0.8 % in March, 2017 over March, 2016. Its cumulative index during April to March, 2016-17 increased by 1.8 % over the corresponding period of previous year.

Steel (Alloy + Non-Alloy)

            Steel production (weight: 6.68%) increased by 11.0 % in March, 2017 over March, 2016. Its cumulative index during April to March, 2016-17 increased by 9.3 % over the corresponding period of previous year.

Cement

            Cement production (weight: 2.41%) declined by 6.8 % in March, 2017 over March, 2016. Its cumulative index during April to March, 2016-17 declined by 1.3 % over the corresponding period of previous year.

Electricity

            Electricity generation (weight: 10.32%) increased by 5.9 % in March, 2017 over March, 2016. Its cumulative index during April to March, 2016-17 increased by5.1 % over the corresponding period of previous year.

Note 1: Data are provisional. Revision has been made based on revised data received for corresponding month of previous year in respect of Coal, Crude Oil, Natural Gas, Fertilizers, Steel, Cement and Electricity. Accordingly, indices for the month of March, 2016 have been revised.

 

Note 2: Since October, 2016, Electricity generation data from Renewable sources is also included.

Note 3: Release of the index for April, 2017 will be on Wednesday, 31st May, 2017.

 

Read more: Index of Eight Core Industries (Base:...

 

A two-day conference of Ministers for Power , New & Renewable Energy & Mines of States & Union Territories will be held on 3rd & 4th May in New Delhi  The Conference will be inaugurated by Shri Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy and Mines. The aim of this two-day conference is to review the implementation of various ongoing Schemes/ Programmes & deliberate on a host of issues pertaining to Power, Coal, Renewable Energy and Mines sectors.

 

Ministers and Secretaries of the States and Union territories and senior officials of the four sectors and Public Sector Undertakings under them will meet up to discuss issues like implementation of 24x7 Power for All , Strategies and action plan for 100% household electrification and Smart metering power reforms, Energy conservation , Energy efficient Agriculture Pumps , cyber security & promotion of digital payments in power sector.

 

In the area of Renewable Energy, the Ministers will discuss guidelines for Renewable projects.

 

In the Coal sector, deliberations will focus upon issues like  flexibility in utilisation of domestic coal for reducing cost of power generation and use of domestic coal instead of imported coal .

 

In the Mining sector, deliberations will concentrate upon important issues such as  Auction Preparedness of blocks for 2017-18 already under preparation by the States , Status of project implementation under Pradhan Mantri Khanij Kshetra Kalyan Yojana (PMKKKY), Curbing illegal mining through Mining Surveillance System (MSS) with Specific Reference to Illegal sand Mining and Minor mineral rules

 

The concluding session of the conference would consist of comments and feedback by States/UTs and adoption of Conference Resolution by the delegates.

 

Pl click link below to get complete Agenda Paper of the Conference

 

http://powermin.nic.in/sites/default/files/webform/notices/Agenda_Booklet_for_PMC_on_3_to_4th_May_0.pdf

RM/VM /PS

Read more: Two day conference of States Power Ministers to...

The Union Home Minister, Shri Rajnath Singh reviewed the Prime Minister’s Development Package (PMDP) for the State of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) here today. The PMDP was announced by the Prime Minister during his visit to J&K on November 07, 2015.

The Package consists of 63 projects concerning 15 Ministries of Government of India and has an outlay of Rs 80,068 crore. The review meeting was attended by the Minister of State for Home Affairs Shri Hansraj Gangaram Ahir, Union Home Secretary Shri Rajiv Mehrishi, Secretaries and senior officers from all the 15 Ministries, Chief Secretary of J&K along with Secretaries of various departments of the J&K Government.

Out of Rs 80,068 crore outlay of PMDP, Rs 61,112 crore have already been sanctioned by the various Ministries of Government of India (more than 75 %). Rs 19,961 crore have already been released to the implementing agencies including the State Government (more than 25%).

The PMDP will provide a major development push for J&K with projects such as AIIMS for Jammu, AIIMS at Srinagar, Support for District as well as Sub-District Hospitals and Primary Health Centers, IIM at Jammu with an out campus at Srinagar, IIT, upgradation of NIT at Srinagar and additional Girls’ Hostels in Higher Educational Institutions.

The Government of India has also approved to provide 1,00,000 jobs for undergraduates and school dropouts under HIMAYAT scheme, an elaborate layout for sports infrastructure in all the 22 Districts, Development of Pashmina wool, Cold Storage facilities for Agricultural produce and Development of Horticulture. The Package also includes a major support to Urban development under AMRUT scheme, Swachh Bharat Mission and Smart Cities. Major Water Resources projects include flood management of River Jhelum and its tributaries, conservation of major water bodies such as Dal, Nageen and Wular lakes.

18 Major Road Transport and Tunnel projects under PMDP are expected to provide much better connectivity for the people of J&K and allow the farmers to transport their produce to the desired markets.

Three (3) Himalayan Circuits have been sanctioned under Tourism that include extensive development in all the three regions ie Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh, under the tourism front also.

There are 5 major power projects which include Srinagar – Leh transmission line, Smart Grid and Smart Meters and augmentation of electricity distribution systems.

In addition, approval has been given for Semi Ring roads for Jammu and Srinagar and hydro & solar power projects.

These projects are in various stages of implementation. While work has started on many projects, in some cases DPRs are in final stages of preparation and in a few difficult cases, the DPRs are under preparation. Nearly 87 DPRs are being finalized for small hydro projects.

Shri Rajnath Singh asked the team of Central and State Government officials to further accelerate the implementation of PMDP with definite timelines so that the people of the State of J&K are able to reap the benefits of these development initiatives of Government of India at the earliest.

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KSD/NK/PK/KM

Read more: Union Home Minister reviews status of Prime...

 

            The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the following:

 

1.      Shri Anil Srivastava, IAS (MP:1985), as Advisor (JS level), NITI Aayog, on lateral shift basis, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a combined tenure of seven years of central deputation upto 14.02.2019 or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Ms. Alka Tiwari, IAS (JH: 1988);

 

2.      Shri Jatindra Nath Swain, IAS (TN:1988), as Joint Secretary, Ministry of New & Renewable Energy, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Santosh D Vaidya, IAS (UT: 1998);

 

3.      Ms. Upma Srivastava, IAS (SK:1988), as Joint Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Anil Srivastava, IAS (MP: 1985);

 

4.      Shri K. Vinayak Rao, IRAS (1987) as Member (Finance) (JS level), DDA, Ministry of Urban Development from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Venkatesh Mohan, IA&AS (1983);

 

5.      Shri Madhu Ranjan Kumar, IRSS (1984), Secretary (JS level), NCMEI, as Joint Secretary, Department of Higher Education from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a tenure upto his superannuation on 30.06.2021 or until further orders, by temporarily upgrading a Director level post (vice Shri Alok Mishra, I Info S (1998)) for a period of two years or till a regular JS level vacancy arises, whichever is earlier;

 

6.      Shri Pramod Kumar Pathak, IFoS (KL:1986), as Joint Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri A.K. Ganeriwala, IFoS (SK:1986);

 

7.      Shri Kamlesh Chaturvedi, IFoS (MP:1988), as Joint Secretary, Ministry of Road Transport & Highways from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Rohit Kumar Singh, IAS (RJ: 1989);

 

8.      Shri P.K. Borthakur, IAS (AM:1989), as Joint Secretary, Department of Agriculture, Cooperation & Farmers' Welfare from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Rajesh K. Singh, IAS (KL: 1989);

 

9.      Shri K. Rajaraman, IAS(TN:1989), as Joint Secretary, Department of Expenditure from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Vivek Joshi, IAS (HY: 1989) against a Director level upgraded post existing till 17.03.2018 or till a regular JS level vacancy arises, whichever is earlier;

 

10.  Shri Srinivas Ramaswamy Katikithala, IAS (GJ:1989), as Joint Secretary, Department of Personnel & Training, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier, by temporarily downgrading an Additional Secretary level post for 2 years or until a regular JS level vacancy arises, whichever is earlier

 

11.  Shri Shantmanu, IAS (JK: 1991), as Development Commissioner (Handicrafts) (JS level), M/o. Textiles, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri K. Gopal, IAS (TN: 1992);

 

12.  Shri Pramod Kumar Tiwari, IAS (AM:1991), as Joint Secretary, Department of Food & Public Distribution, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Deepak Kumar, IAS (UP: 1990);

 

13.  Ms. Nidhi Chhibber, IAS (CG: 1994), as Joint Secretary, Department of Defence, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Suresh Kumar, IAS (JK:1986);

 

14.  Ms. Meera Ranjan Tshering, IPoS (1988), as Joint Secretary & FA, Ministry of Women & Child Development, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Ms. Sarita Mittal, CSS; (the officer shall assume charge on completion of tenure of the present incumbent.)

 

15.  Shri D.K. Sekar, IAAS (1995), as Additional DGFT (JS level), Chennai, DGFT, under Department of Commerce, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri M. Sai Kumar, IAS (TN: 1980);

 

16.  Ms. Sarita Mittal, CSS, as Joint Secretary, Department of Health Research, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period upto her superannuation on 31.05.2019 or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Manoj Pant, IFoS (JK:1986); (the officer shall assume charge on completion of tenure of the present incumbent.)

 

17.  Shri Alok Saxena, IPoS (1989), as Joint Secretary, Department of Health & Family Welfare, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier, vice Shri K.B. Agarwal, IAS (JK:1985);

 

18.  Premature repatriation of Ms. Vandana Gupta, IP&TA&FS (1990), Joint Secretary, NCW, under Ministry of Women & Child Development, with immediate effect, to her cadre with imposition of extended cooling off;

 

19.  Ms. Chhavi Jha, IRAS (1990), as Joint Secretary, NCW under Ministry of Women & Child Development, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Ms. Vandana Gupta, IP&TA&FS (1990);

 

20.  Ms. Aastha Saxena Khatwani, ICAS (1991), as Joint Secretary, Ministry of Women & Child Development, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Ms. Rashmi Saxena Sahni, IRS (IT :1984);

 

21.  Shri Murugan Arumugam Inbarasu, IRSME (1985), as Joint Secretary, Mumbai, Department of Atomic Energy, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period upto his superannuation on 31.10.2019 or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Sanjeev Sood, IRSEE (1985); (the officer shall assume charge on completion of tenure of the present incumbent.)

 

22.  Shri Shishir Sinha, IOFS (1988), as DDG (JS level), UIDAI, from the date of assumption of the charge of the post, for a period of five years or until further orders, whichever is earlier vice Shri Harish Chand Agarwal, IPoS (1988).

 

 

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KSD/PK/KM/RS

 

Read more: ACC Appointments

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee yesterday (April 28, 2017) received His Excellency Mr. Nicos Anastasiades, the President of the Republic of Cyprus at Rashtrapati Bhavan. He also hosted a banquet in his honour.

Welcoming the President of Cyprus on his first ever State Visit to India, the President said that almost all Presidents of Cyprus before him have paid a visit to India. We, therefore, feel honoured that he has kept up that tradition. 

The President said that India values its long standing and close friendship with Cyprus.  India-Cyprus relationship is pinned on the foundation of ideological commonalities of our founding fathers – Mahatma Gandhi and Archbishop Makarios. 

The President said that both India and Cyprus suffer from the scourge of terrorism.  This global menace needs to be fought by all civilized societies and countries not just individually, but at a bilaterally, regional and global level.  He stressed that there is an urgent need to strengthen the global counter-terrorism legal framework to combat the scourge of international terrorism.  India seeks to build a broad consensus at the United Nations for finalization of the draft Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism and early adoption of the CCIT in the United Nations. 

Subsequently, in his banquet speech, President Pranab Mukherjee said that India lauds the economic recovery of Cyprus under the leadership of Mr. Nicos Anastasiades, particularly its return to a positive rate of growth – among the fastest in the European Union.  In recent years, India has seen rapid economic progress - despite the global slowdown - and achieved a steady growth rate of about 7%. We welcome Cyprus to take advantage of our flagship programmes like ‘Make in India’ and ‘Skill India’ - and join India’s growth story. Our information technology sector as also our renewable energy, natural gas and hydrocarbons, sustainable tourism, infrastructure and health and wellness sectors are open for partnerships and foreign investment.  The recent signing of the revised Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement is a good step in this direction. The President expressed confidence that this State Visit will result in new initiatives in all these areas of immense potential.

AKT/NT

Read more: India Values its long standing and close...

Rs 50,000 crores to be invested for revival of closed fertilizer plants and setting up of gas pipeline network to connect Eastern India to National Gas Grid: Shri Dharmendra Pradhan

Union Minister for Chemicals & Fertilizers and Parliamentary Affairs, Shri Ananthkumar presided over a Joint review meeting on revival plans for closed fertilizer projects under Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers here today. The review was jointly held with Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy and Mines, Shri Piyush Goyal, Minister of State (IC) for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan and Minister of State for Road Transport & Highways, Shipping, Chemical & Fertilizer, Shri Mansukh Lal Mandaviya. Senior officers from the three Ministries were present during the meeting.

Addressing the media after the meeting, Shri Ananthkumar informed that with the revival of the fertilizer projects, Gorakhpur, Barauni, Sindri and Talcher, an additional annual production capacity of 75 LMT would be created making India self-reliant in meeting the annual domestic demand of around 320 LMT, from being a net importer currently. Financial allocations and the ground level work would start in 2017 and the five plants would become fully functional by 2020-21, he added.

Shri Kumar said that for realising Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s vision of ‘Fertilizer Security for Food Security’, the Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers, in coordination with Ministries of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Power & Coal, is following a two-pronged strategy. This strategy includes existing fertilizer capacity augmentation by increasing the efficiency of the plants and revival of closed fertilizer projects. Shri Kumar mentioned that there has been highest ever production of urea, 245 LMT, in the country in the previous year without incurring any additional cost and utilising the existing capacity. He further mentioned that the 100% Neem Coating Urea has increased the per granule efficiency of urea by decreasing demand by 10% and increasing the yield by 10%.

Informing the media about the role of the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas in the revival plan, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan said that a massive investment to the tune of Rs. 50,000 crores is being undertaken for revival of closed fertilizer plants and setting up of gas pipeline network to connect Eastern India to the National Gas Grid. Production from these four major Fertilizer plants will ensure enhanced domestic fertilizer production and availability which will give an impetus to the vital agricultural sector there by aiding the Second Green Revolution, he added.

Shri Pradhan informed that the progress of the construction of the pipeline network in eastern India, including the 2,650 km Jagdishpur-Haldia & Bokaro-Dhamra Natural Gas Pipeline, popularly known as ‘Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga’, and the 50 LMT Dhamra LNG terminal was reviewed in the meeting. A total investment of Rs. 13,000 crores for the pipeline and of Rs 6,000 crores for Dhamra LNG terminal is going to be undertaken, he added.

The Minister said that this pipeline network would provide uninterrupted feedstock linkage to the revived fertilizer plants, wherein Gorakhpur, Barauni and Sindri plants would be natural gas based and Talcher would be coal gasification technology based, for which coal linkages have already been provided. Shri Pradhan added that the foundation stones for the five fertilizer plants would be laid down post monsoon this year and would be completed by 2020-21.

The Talcher Unit is being revived by a consortium of PSUs namely Rashtriya Chemicals & Fertilizers (RCF), Gas Authority of India (GAIL), Coal India Ltd. (CIL) and FCIL by investing Rs. 8,000 crores.  Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. (IOCL), CIL & National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) have registered a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) by name Hindustan Urvarak & Rasayan Limited (HURL) for revival of closed urea plants of FCIL at Gorakhpur and Sindri and of Hindustan Fertilizer Corporation of India Ltd. (HFCL) at Barauni, by an investment of Rs. 20,000 crores. An Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) has also been constituted to oversee the revival process.

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VM

Read more: Joint Review Meeting for revival of Closed...

Your Excellency President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of the Republic of Turkey,

Distinguished Ministers,

Members of the Turkish delegation,

Friends from the Indian business community,

Ladies and Gentlemen!

I am delighted to have this opportunity to interact with the leading businessmen in today’s Forum. I extend a warm welcome to President Erdogan and all our Turkish friends present here. It is a pleasure to see a large number of business delegates accompanying President Erdogan. I am also very happy to see the participation of many Indian business leaders.

Friends, India and Turkey enjoy great historic and cultural connect. We also share a common outlook on the present economic order in the world.

Now, economic cooperation is becoming an important pillar of every bilateral relation. India and Turkey enjoy good economic ties. The growth in our bilateral trade over the years has been impressive. I understand that bilateral trade has increased significantly since President Ergodan last visited India. It has gone up from US Dollar 2.8 billion in 2008 to 6.4 billion in 2016. While this is encouraging, the level of present economic and commercial relations is not enough against the real potential.

Friends! India and Turkey are among twenty largest economies in the world. More importantly, both economies have shown remarkable stability even in volatile global economic conditions. Our economies are based on strong fundamentals and for this reason, we are optimistic about our economic prospects.

There is immense goodwill for each other between the people of the two countries. As we strive to build stronger political ties, the time has come to also make more aggressive effort to deepen the economic relations. We have a long history of doing business with each other. We have to build on this rich heritage.

There is huge potential and opportunity to enhance the bilateral engagement. This is possible through trade and FDI inflows, technology tie-up, and cooperation on various projects. In this context, we have seen some increase in participation of Turkish companies in India. This has come through investment in blue chip Indian companies and FDI route in the last few years. However, such cooperation could go upto small and medium enterprises. Today’s knowledge-based global economy is continuously opening new areas. We must factor this in our economic and commercial interactions.

You can see that the governments of both sides are committed to provide a business-friendly environment. However, it is the business leaders such as you who have to turn the national goal into reality for mutual benefit of the two nations.

Friends!

The Indian political system is known for its vibrant, open and participative democracy. Stability in political and administrative processes, and rule of law are the hallmark of our system. And these are important considerations for any serious long-term economic engagement.

My government came to power in this very month three years back. Since then, we have launched several initiatives to reform the economy and administrative processes. We have also launched several flagship programmes like Make in India, Start up India and Digital India. The result of these is already visible in the recovery of Indian economy. Today, Indian economy is the fastest growing major economy in the world. In addition to maintaining this pace, our focus is also to remove the inefficiencies from the system. We are in the process of building a New India. Therefore, our focus is on making it easier to work; particularly to do business. This includes reforming the policies, processes and procedures. It also includes creating conditions and facilitating domestic and foreign investment.

We have achieved lot of success and recognition on this front. Our Global ranking has gone up on many parameters. However, this is an ongoing effort. Therefore, it has to continue. It is basically a shift in attitude and approach. The objective is to make India a better place to enable people realize their potential. This is required in particular to provide employment and self-employment opportunities for our youth. The recent GST Legislation is another such initiative of my Government. This was an old demand to create a uniform and efficient business atmosphere in the country.

I know that Turkish construction companies have successfully undertaken many construction and infrastructure projects in other countries. Our infrastructure requirements are enormous, including core as well as social and industrial infrastructure. We are keen to build it strong and build it fast. Turkish companies can easily participate in this task. Just to give you some examples:

We have planned to build 50 million houses by 2022. For this purpose, we have repeatedly refined our FDI Policy in construction sector;

We are planning metro rail projects in fifty cities and high speed trains in various National corridors;

We have targeted 175 Giga Watt of renewable energy in next few years;

In addition to generation of electricity, the issues of transmission, storage and distribution are equally important for us;

We are modernizing our Railways and upgrading our Highways. In the last three years, we have made maximum allocation for these two sectors;

We are putting up new ports and modernizing the old ones through an ambitious plan called Sagarmala;

Similar focus is on upgrading the existing Airports and putting up regional airports to enhance connectivity to the places of economic and tourist importance.

The Turkish tourism sector is globally renowned. The number of Indian tourists going to Turkey has increased in the last few years. Turkey has also become a popular destination for shooting of Indian films and for television industry. While we should definitely encourage two-way tourism, the industry should explore wider possibilities in this area. One example could be to reach out to our Regional Film Industry which is equally vibrant.

We are aware that India and Turkey are both energy deficient and our energy needs are ever increasing. Hydrocarbon sector is therefore a common area of interest for both countries. The same would also be relevant for solar and wind energy.

Therefore, the energy sector becomes an important pillar of our bilateral relations. Mining and food processing are other areas with great promise. We can also pool together our strengths in the textile and auto sectors. Turkey has a strong manufacturing sector and India is a low cost manufacturing hub. Besides the cost aspect, we have a large pool of skilled and semi-skilled work force and strong R&D capabilities.

I am pleased to note that the mechanism of India-Turkey Joint Committee on Economic & Technical Cooperation is working well. In its next meeting, the Committee could undertake a review of the measures to be taken for promoting two-way trade and investment.

Similarly, I would also urge the Chambers of Commerce & Industry of both sides to engage with each other pro-actively. Our processes should work closely both at the government and B-2-B level.

I would like to thank President Erdogan , members of the delegation and members of Indo-Turkish business chambers for attending today’s forum. This is really an excellent opportunity for bringing together the Indian and Turkish business community.

Friends!

Let us work together for enhancing the level of our economic activities for welfare of our people. From the Indian side, I welcome you with open arms.

I can say with confidence that India was never a more promising destination than it is today.

To make it even better, I assure you of my personal care and co-operation.

Thank You!

***

AKT/SH

Read more: Speech by Prime Minister at India-Turkey...

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