Current Affairs - Sep 4, 2018

CSE report on Urban Commute Pollution

  • New Delhi based NGO, Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), has released a report on the urban Commute in 14 major Indian cities viz. Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Pune, Jaipur, Lucknow, Kochi, Bhopal, Vijayawada and Chandigarh.
  • Among these Bhopal has got the top spot while Delhi got the bottom overall emission and energy use from the urban commute. Kolkata and Mumbai are among the mega cities which emit least due to high usage of public transport and walking.
  • The report highlighted the increase in greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector were highest among all other sectors in India; population, increased number of personal vehicles, and long trip distance are reasons for the increase.

China's USD 60 billion financial assistance to Africa

  • During the inaugural address of  3rd FOCAC Summit hosted by Beijing China pledged $60 billion to African countries.
  • China will disburse $15 billion as aid, interest-free loans, and concessional loans, $20 billion as a credit line, channel $10 billion into the special fund for China-Africa development, and a $5 billion fund to buy African imports.
  • FOCAC - Forum on China Africa Cooperation started in 2000 as a ministerial conference. It includes all African countries except Swaziland (new name eSwatini).
  • Focus area of investment includes security, transport, energy, telecom, water, and food. China already has a naval base in Djibouti on the edge of the strategic Gulf of Aden, that links the Red and Arabian Sea.

Department of Official Language 

  • Issues related to the implementation of Hindi language in official work discussed during the 1st review meeting of the Department of Official Language (Home Ministery).
  • Pravah E-learning portal and Kanthasth software are to be introduced for Hindi learning and translation respectively. Pravah will have be available in 19 languages, while Kanthastha will support Hindi-English translation

President's Cyprus Visit and MoUs

  • Two agreements on combating money laundering and cooperation in the field of the environment were signed during Indian President's Cyprus visit. 
  • President Ram Nath Kovind is on three European states of Cyprus (Nicosia), Bulgaria (Sofia) and Czech Republic(Prague).
  • India and Cyprus are having diplomatic relation since 1967, we have revised our Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) in 2016.
  • Cyprus is the eighth largest foreign investor in India with USD 9 billion.
  • President of Cyprus - Nicos Anastasiades, Capital of Cyprus - Nicosia

Rapid Trident - Ukraine's Military drill with NATO

  • Ukraine has launched annual joint military exercise named Rapid Trident with the United States and other NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) member countries.
  • It is being seen in the context of Russia's mega exercise VOSTOK-2018 with China and Mongolia scheduled next week.
  • 14 countries including the United States, UK, Canada, Georgia, Turkey, Poland, and Germany will be taking part in the exercise to affirm Ukraine's territorial integrity.
  • India is not a part of any of these two exercises.

One-Liners for Preliminary Tests

  • East Asia Summit - Economic Ministers’ Meeting (EAS EMM) concluded successfully in Singapore, participants were ASEAN members - Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam; and also the ASEAN dialogue partners Australia, China, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, the Russian Federation and the United States of America.
  • Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO is organizing major Indian ocean-wide tsunami mock exercise known as IOWave18. India along with 23 other nations are taking part in this exercise.
  • Japanese swimmer Ikee Rikako has been named as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 18th edition of Asian Games. She became the first female athlete to win the MVP title. Rikako bagged six gold and two silver medals in the tournament
  • A NITI Aayog constituted group of experts has urged the Government to set up a dedicated mission to salvage and revive spring water systems in the country’s Himalayan States.
  • International tourist arrivals hit a record high in 2017 with India leading the growth in South Asian region.

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