9th October 2019 Daily Current Affairs:
- In the first tranche of information, Switzerland has shared bank account details with the Indian government under the AEOI (Automatic Exchange of Information) framework.
- AEOI Regime between Switzerland and India kicked off from September 1, 2019.
- Under this mechanism, India will start receiving information on all financial accounts held by Indian residents in Switzerland, for the year 2018.
- The step is likely to shed more light on the wealth Indians have stashed away in Swiss bank accounts, for so long governed by strict local rules of secrecy.
- In 2018, data from Zurich-based Swiss National Bank (SNB) had shown that after declining for three years, money parked by Indians in Swiss Banks rose 50 per cent to CHF (Swiss Franc) 1.02 billion (Rs 7,000 crore) in 2017 over the previous year.
- The Federal tax administration (FDA) of Switzerland has exchanged account details information with 75 countries including India.
- This is the first time when Switzerland has shared financial details about the active and closed accounts during 2018 under the AEOI framework.
Global Competitiveness Index 2019
- India has slipped to 68th rank in the annual Global Competitiveness Index 2019, down by 10 places from its 58th rank in 2018.
- The US also slipped from its top position, to be replaced by Singapore.
- The Global Competitiveness Index 2019 has been compiled by Geneva-based World Economic Forum (WEF).
- India was ranked at the 58th position in the 2018 edition of the index.
- This year, India is one of the worst performing nations in the BRICS group along with Brazil, which is ranked even lower than India at the 71st rank.
- The Index ranks nations on the basis of 12 pillars including infrastructure, institution, ICT adoption, macroeconomic stability, health, skills, product market, labour market, financial system, market size, business dynamism, and innovation capability.
India, China relations are of global significance: envoy
- Relations between India and China will benefit from “upcoming high-level exchanges”, said Chinese Ambassador to India Sun Weidong.
- New Delhi and Beijing are expected to announce Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Mamallapuram for the second ‘informal summit’ with Prime Minister Narendra Modi after the Wuhan Summit of 2018.
- The delay in announcement of Mr. Xi’s visit, with just two days to go, has led to speculation that it would be postponed over differences between New Delhi and Beijing.
- India has protested comments by Chinese officials on the government’s move to amend Article 370, and China reportedly conveyed its displeasure over the military exercises in Arunachal Pradesh just ahead of the talks.
- Ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s expected visit to India and Nepal, Beijing has dropped references to the role of the United Nations in resolving the Kashmir issue.
- Instead, Beijing has advocated direct talks between New Delhi and Islamabad.
- Among 300 scientists from the world, a 32 – year polar researcher from Kerala will be the only person to join MOSAIC expedition
- MOSAIC is Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate. It is the largest Arctic expedition in the history. It is being conducted Alfred Wegner Institute of Germany. It helps researchers understand the impact of climate change. The expedition intends to parameterize geophysical, atmospheric and oceanographic variables of Arctic.
- Previous studies were for shorter duration as the thick ice sheets in the Arctic prevent access in winter. This research vessel will lock itself into a large ice sheet and will drift along with it.
- 125 years ago, a Norwegian explorer managed to seal his wooden ship into the ice during his 3 -year expedition in the North Pole.
- The researcher will study about climate change in Arctic. The shift in polar vortices that shifted south and blasted cold air in Florida and heat wave in Europe are some of the impacts that prove climate change in Arctic has global influence.
- The mission is important to understand the processes in far north for the world leaders to make right decisions.