1. India And UAE Signed 9 Agreements To Boost Bilateral Cooperation
i. India and the United Arab Emirates signed 9 bilateral agreements across various sectors. These agreements were signed during the second day of the three day visit to India of Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi.
ii. These nine agreements are covering cooperation in the fields of currency swap, culture, investments in the infrastructure sector, renewable energy, space research, insurance supervision, cyber security, skill development and commercial information sharing.
Those Agreements are as follow :-
1. MoU on Technical Cooperation in Cyber Space and Combating Cyber Crime. 2. MoU on Establishing a Framework for Facilitating the Participation of U.A.E institutional investors in Infrastructure Investments. 3. General Framework Agreement on Renewable Energy Cooperation. 4. MoU between Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and the United Arab Emirates Space Agency on Cooperation in the Exploration and use of Outer Space for Peaceful Purposes. 5. MoU for bilateral cooperation between Insurance Regulatory Authority of India (IRDA) and the Insurance Authority of UAE. 6. Executive Programme for Cultural Cooperation (EPCC).
7. Letter of Intent between the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE). 8. MoU between Dubai Economic Council (DEC) and Export-Import bank of India. 9. MoU on Indian Rupee (INR)/UAE Dirham (AED) Bilateral Currency Swap Arrangements.
2. World’s Largest Solar Plant Opened In Morocco
i. The world’s Largest solar plant was launched in the Souss-Massa-Drâa area in Morocco.
ii. It is the part of Noor Ouarzazate solar complex which will produce energy for more than one million Moroccan households on completion by 2018.
iii. It will also reduce carbon emissions by an estimated 760000 tons per year.
iv. The entire project will be implemented in three phases involving construction of Noor I (160MW), Noor II (200MW) and Noor III (150MW) in each phase.
v. The World Bank partially financed construction of the plant through a 97 million US dollar loan from the Clean Technology Fund.
3. NATO & EU Signed Agreement On Cyber Defense Cooperation
i. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the European Union (EU) have signed an agreement to improve cooperation in cyber defense.
ii. The technical agreement signed at NATO headquarters at Brussels.
iii. Belgium will help the two in countering the modern forms of hybrid warfare.
iv. It was signed between NATO Computer Incident Response Capability (NCIRC) and the Computer Emergency Response Team – European Union (CERT-EU)
4. Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu Launches 3 IT Enabled Apps
i. The Union Ministry of Railway has launched 3 Information Technology enabled apps to bring the transparency in system on the sidelines of Digital India initiative. These apps were launched by Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu.
ii. These apps includes – Handheld terminals for Indian Railways travelling ticket examiners (TTEs), a paperless unreserved ticketing mobile application and a facility for E-booking of disposable linen on trains.
5. India’s 1st National Deworming Day Launched
i. India launched its 1st Deworming Day on 10th February.
ii. It was launched by The Ministry Of Health & Family Welfare to combat parasitic worm infections among preschool and school age children across India.
iii. Jagat Prakash Nadda, Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare inaugurated the Deworming national programme, in Jaipur, Rajasthan, together with Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje.
iv. National Deworming Day is a groundbreaking initiative focused on reducing the threat of parasitic worm infections, a widespread health issue affecting over 241 million children in India alone.
v. India has the highest burden of soil transmitted parasitic worms in the world.
6. Chhattisgarh And Railway Signed Joint Venture For Infrastructure Development
i. Indian Railway signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Chhattisgarh Government to establish a joint venture ( JV ) for laying tracks and expedite implementation of railway projects in the state.
ii. With this Chhattisgarh became 5th state to join hands with the Indian Railways for speedy execution of rail projects through JV route.
iii. Under this MoU, state government will have 51% share and Indian Railways will have remaining 49% share in the JV company. The joint venture will focus on project development and implementation, resource mobilization, land acquisition and monitor the progress of critical rail projects in the state.
7. Indian Origin Lawyer Davinder Singh Appointed As Vice – Chairman Of ICC
i. A top Indian origin lawyer has been named as Vice-Chairman of the Paris based International Chamber of Commerce Commission (ICC) on Corporate Responsibility and Anti-corruption.
ii. Davinder Singh, 58, is one of the top Indian origin lawyer in Singapore. He is the only Singaporean lawyer to be appointed to the leadership of one of 13 Policy Commissions under the ICC.
iii. Currently he is the chief executive of the Singapore based law firm Drew & Napier. He was the member of Singapore Parliament from 1988-2006.
8. Wipro To Buy US Healthcare Services
i. Global software major and India’s 3rd largest exporter Wipro has made an announced buying “HealthPlan Service” business in the US for $460 million (Rs.3,150 crore). ii. HealthPlan Services is a leading independent technology and Business Process as a Service (BPaaS) provider in the US health insurance market that offers solutions to health insurance firms.
iii. By partnering with HealthPlan, Wipro will have first-mover advantage in the high growth public and private exchange space for individual, group and ancillary markets.
iv. With this acquisition, Wipro is looking to give its healthcare business a major fillip.
v. This is Wipro’s overall 4th acquisition in the in calendar year 2015 . The acquisition process is likely to be completed within the next three months.
9. Amazon To Invest In Westland ( A Tata Group Company )
i. Ecommerce company Amazon has made an investment in Westland, a Trent Ltd subsidiary ( Tata Group ) in support of its publishing business.
ii. The investment will help to expand its international reach and scale its physical and digital book businesses.
iii. Westland had also signed a two-month exclusive deal with Amazon to sell the book through its online platform.
10. Leslie Bassett : Pulitzer Winner Composer Passes Away
i. Leslie Bassett, Pulitzer winning composer passed away in Oakwood, Georgia.
ii. He was 93. As a master composer he was known for his lush sonorities and ecumenical instrumentation and for compositions of coaxing a vast range of tonal colours from the bits of wood and brass.
iii. He had also served as trombonist, composer and arranger in the US Army and Europe during World War II.
iv. Bassett received the Pulitzer in 1966 for “Variations for Orchestra,” which had been given its United States premiere by the Philadelphia Orchestra under Eugene Ormandy the year before.
11. Anirban Lahiri wins Hilton Asian Tour Golfer of the Year award
i. The Indian triumphed at the Maybank Malaysian and Hero Indian Open before going on to finish tied fifth at the PGA Championship last year.
ii. He also became the first Indian to feature at The Presidents Cup and ended the year by winning the Asian Tour Order of Merit title and finishing in 40th place in the world rankings.
iii. Lahiri won the award ahead of Thailand’s Thongchai Jaidee, Malaysia’s Danny Chia and Philippines’ Miguel Tabuena.