Germany Notifies the EU of Border Controls at the Polish

Posted By: Preeti Dabar Posted On: Oct 16, 2023

Germany notified Monday the European Union's executive branch of temporary border controls at its frontiers with Poland, the Czech Republic and Switzerland, going a step beyond a move last month to strengthen checks on its eastern border.

The notification would enable Germany to carry out the same systematic checks at the border that it has conducted on its frontier with Austria since 2015.

The government has responded over the past week to intense pressure to address the arrival of large numbers of migrants following a pair of state elections that brought poor results for the governing parties and gains for the far-right Alternative for Germany.

It has announced draft legislation to ease deportations of unsuccessful asylum-seekers as Chancellor OIaf Scholz met Friday with the opposition leader and two leading state governors for what he called a “friendly and constructive exchange” on migration issues.

Interior Minister Nancy Faeser last month ordered border checks on Germany's eastern frontiers with Poland and the Czech Republic strengthened, but the conservative opposition urged her to formally notify border checks — a move she has now taken.

Faeser said in a statement that “the smugglers' business is becoming ever more brutal and unscrupulous,” pointing to a crash on a Bavarian highway Friday in which seven people were killed after a van overloaded with migrants overturned when the driver and suspected smuggler accelerated to avoid a police check.

“It is now necessary to take all possible measures to stop this cruel business in people's lives,” she said. “At the time, we need an effective limitation of irregular migration to relieve our municipalities.”

She said that police “can now flexibly use the whole package of stationary and mobile border policing measures, according to the current situation.” Shelters for migrants and refugees across Germany have been filling up in recent months as significant numbers of asylum-seekers add to more than 1 million Ukrainians who have arrived since the start of the war in their homeland.

Source: News18
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Apple's next-gen iPad Mini to redefine compact tablet innovation in 2024

Posted By: Ajay Rawat Posted On: Nov 27, 2023
For representation purposes only (Apple)

Apple is reportedly poised to unveil an exciting new chapter in the iPad Mini series with the imminent launch of the seventh generation of its compact tablet, expected in either September or October 2024. The last iteration, introduced in September 2021, brought forth notable upgrades, including a spacious 8.3-inch display, a user-friendly USB-C port, and a Touch ID power button.

Boasting the powerful A15 Bionic chip, 5G connectivity, and seamless integration with the second-gen Apple Pencil, the 2021 release underscored Apple's unwavering dedication to pushing the boundaries of innovation.

Rumors suggest that the forthcoming iPad Mini will feature an enhanced A16 Bionic chip, elevating its performance capabilities. There are also speculations about improvements to both the front and rear cameras. While the current model boasts a 12MP rear camera and a 12MP Ultra Wide front camera, the upcoming iPad Mini is expected to take these camera capabilities to the next level, as per reports from MacRumors.

Anticipate a potential infusion of color excitement for the iPad Mini, as rumors suggest the introduction of new color options. The existing palette comprises Space Gray, Starlight, Pink, and Purple. Furthermore, the upcoming iPad Mini is poised to adopt Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3, offering accelerated Wi-Fi speeds and improved Bluetooth connectivity. These features mirror those already present in the latest iPad Pro, iPhone 15 Pro models, and many recent Macs.

Leaks indicate enhancements in the screen assembly of the upcoming Apple iPad Mini, specifically targeting the issue of "jelly scrolling" or screen tearing in portrait orientation. This problem, resulting in tilted text or images due to refresh rate mismatches, may become a thing of the past with the new release.

To bring everyone up to speed, Apple revamped its iPad lineup in 2022, delivering updates to the iPad, iPad Pro, and iPad Air. Notably, the Apple iPad Mini received its most recent update in September 2021, featuring a redesigned look and the introduction of the A15 Bionic chipset. As we await the forthcoming iPad Mini, enthusiasts can look forward to a combination of performance enhancements and compelling new features in Apple's compact tablet offering.

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As Migration to Europe Rises

Posted By: Preeti Dabar Posted On: Nov 25, 2023
Finnish border guards escort migrants at the international border crossing at Salla, northern Finland, this week. PHOTO: LEHTIKUVA/REUTERS

Rising migration across Europe, including the biggest surge in asylum seekers since a 2015-2016 migrant crisis, is fueling support for far-right and anti-immigration parties, potentially reshaping European politics for years.

Nationalist parties that champion a harder line against immigration are surging in polls and have entered governmentsin countries from Italy to Finland, as anxiety rises about sluggish economic growth and crises from Ukraine to the Middle East. The far right is polling strongly in the continent's two largest countries, Germany and France.

This week's victory in Dutch elections by far-right politician Geert Wilders, who has placed anti-migration policies at the heart of his political platform for the last 15 years, was a powerful sign of how voters are drifting to antiestablishment politicians, analysts said. He will still need to form a coalition in a fractured political landscape, which likely means softening some of his policy goals, but said Thursday that he wants to become prime minister.

Wilders has said he wants strict limits on immigration and no longer wants the Netherlands to accept any asylum seekers. During the election campaign, Wilders tied problems such as the high cost of living and lack of affordable housing to his migration theme, arguing that by slashing the numbers of people who come to the Netherlands, the government could have more money to address other problems.

“It all resonated with his key political message—that it's time to put the Dutch people first again," said Rem Korteweg, a senior fellow at the Clingendael Institute think tank in the Netherlands.

Europe is on track to receive more than a million asylum applications this year, the highest since 2015-2016 when a wave of migrants mostly from the Middle East and Africa sparked a crisis. In September alone there were 108,000 applications, similar to the levels of 2015, according to EU data.Migrants have reached the EU this year primarily by land through the Balkans and by sea across the Mediterranean to Italy.

The figures don't include roughly 4.2 million displaced Ukrainians who have received temporary protection status across Europe since Russia's invasion of Ukraine. Overall, migration has hit at least 15-year highs in a number of European countries including Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland and the U.K., according to data from theOrganization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

The Netherlands net migration figure rose to almost 223,000 in 2022, the highest in two decades in the country of 17.5 million. Last year, asylum applications in the Netherlands rose by a third to 46,400. The Dutch cabinet said in April that it was expecting more than 70,000 asylum claims in 2023, excluding Ukrainians, topping the roughly 59,000 people who arrived in 2015 at the peak of the migration crisis.

Voters can become anxious about immigration when they perceive it to be out of control, such as when people cross the English Channel or the Mediterranean in small boats or illegally breach the U.S. southern border, said Alan Manning, professor of economics at London School of Economics and former chair of the U.K. Migration Advisory Committee, which advises the U.K. government on immigration policy. Problems arise when “there's no ability to say enough—we don't want this."

In September, Slovakia's former Premier Robert Fico returned to power in part by highlighting a surge in illegal migration. That followed victories last year by Italy's right-wing Giorgia Meloni and a new coalition government in Finland earlier this year that included the far-right Finns Party, which made anti-immigration its central pitch.

Germany's far-right Alternative for Germany has moved into second place in the polls over the past year, increasing its share of support by around a third to rise above 20%.

While French elections won't be held until 2027, a recent IFOP poll for French newspaper Le Figaro gave Marine Le Pen's opposition National Rally party an eight-point lead over President Emmanuel Macron's Renaissance.

The surge in asylum seekers is driving many countries to try new policies. Italy struck a deal with Albania for asylum seekers to wait there while their cases are decided in Italy, and Germany recently said it was considering deals with other countries, including some in Africa, to house asylum seekers. An attempt by the U.K. to send migrants to Rwanda has so far been blocked in court. Other countries, such as Hungary, have erected border fences to block asylum seekers.

The rise in legal migration is unfolding as Europe faces severe labor shortages in places such as Germany and the Netherlands, which could worsen as the region's workforce ages and retires. But it also comes during a period of widespread voter disenchantment, partly caused by slow economic growth and high inflation postpandemic and the Ukraine war, which has driven down households' purchasing power.

In Sweden, the government has blamed a rise in violent crime in part on the failure to integrate migrant communities and recently proposed changes that would allow the country to expel migrants or asylum seekers who associate with criminal groups. In Germany, hundreds of thousands of refugees arriving in recent years from Afghanistan and Syria have struggled to enter the country's labor market, according to official data.

Even in countries where far-right parties haven't risen strongly in polls, there are signs of social strain. In Dublin, crowds rioted on Thursday, smashing buses and looting stores in what police described as the worst social unrest in the Irish capital in decades. It followed a stabbing at a school that far-right groups attributed to a foreign migrant. Police haven't identified an assailant.

“Migration is a difficult topic to talk about in politics at the moment," Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar told a news conference. “In the round, it has been a good thing for Ireland."

Once in power, parties have discovered that reducing migration is easier said than done. The European Union's setup makes a crackdown on migration and asylum seekers especially difficult. The bloc's border-free Schengen zone, the free movement of labor across the continent, and EU rules committing countries to take in asylum claimants fleeing from war or persecution complicate anti-migration plans.

Despite Italy having elected a right wing anti-migration government last year, the number of migrants arriving by sea in to the country so far this year is close to levels last seen during the migration crisis.

The U.K. formally left the EU in 2020 partly to have greater control over its borders by ending the right of Europeans to move to the U.K. without a visa. Last year, legal immigration to the U.K. hit a record 745,000 and remained high in the first half of this year, driven partly by an increase in workers to fill jobs in fields such as nursing, according to data published on Thursday by the national statistics office. The government is also struggling to reduce the numbers of asylum seekers arriving by sea.

Write to Laurence Norman at laurence.norman@wsj.com and Tom Fairless at tom.fairless@wsj.com

Source: Live Mint
Related Posts: MIGRATION TO EUROPE,EUROPE IMMIGRATION,MIGRATION,ASYLUM SEEKERS,EUROPE ASYLUM SEEKERS,UKRAINE WAR,ISRAEL HAMAS WAR,FAR RIGHT,EUROPEAN FAR RIGHT,FAR RIGHT POLITICS,GEERT WILDERS

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India, EU sign MoU on semiconductors

Posted By: Preeti Dabar Posted On: Nov 25, 2023
India and the European Union signed a Memorandum of Understanding on semiconductors? ahead of a meeting of the EU-India Trade and Technology Council. (Bloomberg)

India and the European Union signed a Memorandum of Understanding on semiconductors​ ahead of a meeting of the EU-India Trade and Technology Council.

“The MoU was signed by Shri. Ashwini Vaishnaw, Hon'ble Minister of Electronics, IT & Communications and Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Markets.

The MoU, aims at increasing resilience of semi-conductors value chain in India and EU and covers cooperation in wide areas covering research and innovation, talent development, partnerships and exchange of market information. The MoU symbolizes the strong commitment between India and EU to work towards building robust semiconductor supply chains and work together on innovation," reads a press release by the Ministry of External Affairs.

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The meeting of the EU India TTC was held virtually and co-chaired by India's External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal and Electronics and IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw. The EU-India TTC was first launched in April 2022, when EU Commission President Ursula Von Der Leyen visited India.

“The inaugural Ministerial meeting of TTC was held in Brussels on 16 May 2023, where all the three working groups under TTC set out their cooperation on a wide range of issues including semi-conductors, high-performance computing, digital public infrastructures, clean energy technologies, supply chain resilience and trade issues," explains a press release by the MEA.

During this virtual meeting, both sides assessed the progress in the working groups established under the TTC.

“​The co – chairs expressed satisfaction at the progress achieved in the Working groups till date, particularly in the areas of Semiconductors, High performance Computing, Digital Public Infrastructures, EV batteries and its recycling, waste to energy, Resilient supply chains and FDI screening. The co – chairs stressed on taking the collaboration through research and innovation to the next phase of implementation in terms of practical outcomes/projects, through more intensive stakeholder consultations before the next TTC meeting and India – EU Summit," the MEA said.

​A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on semi-conductors between India and EU was also signed ahead of the TTC Meeting. The MoU was signed by Shri. Ashwini Vaishnaw, Hon'ble Minister of Electronics, IT & Communications and Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Markets. The MoU, aims at increasing resilience of semi-conductors value chain in India and EU and covers cooperation in wide areas covering research and innovation, talent development, partnerships and exchange of market information. The MoU symbolizes the strong commitment between India and EU to work towards building robust semiconductor supply chains and work together on innovation.

​Both sides agreed to hold the next meeting of the TTC in India back – back with the India – EU Summit at a mutually convenient date early next year

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Source: Live Mint
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Air Pollution Behind Over 250

Posted By: Jogendra Kumar Posted On: Nov 24, 2023

Fine particle pollution caused the deaths of over 250,000 people in the European Union in 2021, according to a report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) published Friday.

Fine particulate matter, or PM2.5, is a term for fine particulates that are typically the by-product of car exhausts or coal-fired power plants.

Their tiny size enables them to travel deep into the respiratory tract — worsening the risk of bronchitis, asthma and lung disease.

“According to the latest EEA estimates, at least 253,000 deaths in the EU in 2021 were attributable to exposure to fine particulate matter (PM2.5) pollution above the WHO recommended concentration” the group said.

The EEA added that those deaths “could have been avoided… if the fine particulate matter concentrations had met WHO recommendations.”

The figure represents an increase compared to 2020, when fine particles were attributed to the premature death of 238,000 people.

The EEA said the rise can be explained by increased exposure to pollutants and by a slight rise in European mortality, mainly due to Covid-19.

In contrast, the long-term trend remains largely positive and between 2005 and 2021, the number of premature deaths due to fine particle pollution fell by 41 points, the report points out.

Despite “great strides” over the past years, “the impacts of air pollution on our health remains still too high, resulting in deaths and illnesses which can be attributed to air pollution,” Leena Yla-Mononen, EEA Executive Director, said in the statement.

For other pollutants, premature deaths attributed to exposure to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) also saw a slight increase from 2020, reaching 52,000 in 2021.

Meanwhile, deaths attributable to exposure to ozone (O3) — produced mainly by road traffic and industrial activities — was estimated to be responsible for 22,000 premature deaths, a slight decrease compared with 2020.

The agency does not add up the figures, as it believes this would lead to some deaths being counted twice, but stresses that air pollution remains the biggest environmental threat to the health of Europeans.

Source: News18
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Has the European Central Bank become too powerful

Posted By: Jaydatt Chaudhary Posted On: Nov 23, 2023
The ECB is unique in that it has no political overlord or fiscal counterpart. (File Photo: AFP)

“Nothing is possible without people. Nothing is lasting without institutions," noted Jean Monnet, one of the European Union’s founding fathers. The growth of the European Central Bank (ECB) from humble beginnings, as the guardian of a nascent currency, to one of the great powers in European politics might have surprised even the master technocrat himself. Having recently turned 25, the institution is so mighty that it now faces a tough question. Does it know when to stop?

The ECB is unique in that it has no political overlord or fiscal counterpart. Its independence is enshrined by treaty, the closest the EU has to a constitution. Its mandate puts price stability front and centre. In a second part policymakers are instructed “to support the general economic policies of the EU", which include growth and employment, in a manner similar to the dual mandate of the Federal Reserve, but may also be stretched to take in climate policies or “de-risking" relations with China.

Throughout the ECB's history, its officials have assumed additional responsibilities. In many cases they were forced to do so. In the midst of market turmoil during the sovereign-debt crisis of the early 2010s, Mario Draghi, then the bank's president, calmed investors by promising to do “whatever it takes" to protect the euro. During covid-19 and under Christine Lagarde, the current president, the ECB bought €1.7trn ($2trn) in public debts to arrest doubts about euro-zone governments' liquidity. She followed this up by announcing another bond-buying programme last year, when inflation threatened to send interest rates on Italian bonds soaring.

In all but name, then, the ECB has become the lender of last resort to euro-zone governments. The bank is at pains to stress that its bond-buying programmes come with strings attached. Indeed, in order to sidestep the treaty's ban on financing governments, officials must combine a monetary-policy justification with adherence to the eu's fiscal rules and the need for sustainable debt. As such, “ECB lawyers have to be among the most innovative in the world," says Sander Tordoir of the Centre for European Reform, a think-tank. Rather than governments leaning on the central bank to help out, as can happen elsewhere in a crisis, the ECB enforces “macroeconomic reasonability", as Francesco Papadia, a former ECB official, puts it.

Geopolitics is now pushing the ECB into a still more sensitive role. Take swap lines. The bank decides whether to set them up. If European banks urgently need dollars, for example, the ecb could swap euros for the currency with the Fed. Of the two large non-euro eu members, Poland benefits from a limited swap line with the ecb; Hungary does not. “Whether Ukraine, for example, gets [one] should be a joint decision with finance ministers, and not the ecb's alone," argues Shahin Vallée of the German Council on Foreign Relations, another think-tank. Similarly, the ECB is a powerful voice in a debate about what should happen to Russia's frozen central-bank assets, preferring to leave them untouched. It also objects, on legal grounds, to attempts to rechannel some imf special-drawing rights, which can be used as foreign-currency reserves, to development banks.

Yet the ECB is not just responding to events. This can be seen in its promotion of the euro—something for which its mandate does not explicitly call. As Ms Lagarde recently told The Economist: “If there is more trade in euros, we need to provide the liquidity supporting that trade. An international euro is a force for stability." One way in which the bank is planning to boost the euro is through a digital currency, which may help facilitate international transactions. It has gone further than the Fed, which is nowhere near to issuing one and is more worried about political approval.

Climate change is another area where the ECB is playing a role. As the EU's main banking supervisor, it must assess emerging risks. “It is no longer controversial that the climate crisis translates into financial risk, and is thus squarely within our mandate," says Frank Elderson of the ECB's executive board. The results of an ECB climate stress test, published on September 6th, show that a faster energy transition will lower banks' credit risks in the medium term. Thus green thinking will increasingly inform the ECB's risk management, bond-buying and collateral policies.

Ms Lagarde argues more could be within the bank's mandate: “All European bodies, from the European Parliament to member states, are committed to the Paris Agreement's climate targets." One policy being debated is a green version of the ECB's targeted-lending operations. These have been employed so far as monetary-policy tools, encouraging financial institutions to lend to companies and households. Taking green considerations into account when handing out cash would mean the bank conducts outright climate policy, which would go beyond anything the Fed would consider doing.

The danger in all this is that the ECB does too much. There is no desire among national governments to put the bank on a leash. Indeed, it may offer a way to achieve things that politicians cannot, for fear of public backlash. Perhaps aware of its increasing power, countries are nominating former politicians to the ECB's governing council. The president herself was previously France's finance minister; Luis de Guindos, the bank's vice-president, was Spain's. Yet the more the ECB ventures into controversial areas, the greater the risk its legitimacy is eroded. For the moment, both politicians and central bankers are happy. Will citizens one day start to object?

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Airports want govt to allow sale of Indian liquor at duty-free shops

Posted By: Vishal Maurya Posted On: Nov 22, 2023
The request comes at a time when Indian whisky brands are winning accolades across the globe. (Mint)

Flyers in India might get to buy popular Indian liquor brands such as Indri and Amrut at duty-free shops across the country, if the government agrees to such a request from private airport operators. Wine and spirits are ranked third in terms of sales at duty-free shops, according to Mordor Intelligence, a market research firm; fashion and accessories, and jewellery and watches are the top two categories.

The request is part of a set of Budget recommendations from the Association of Private Airport Operators (APAO). “Duty-free operators should be allowed to sell domestic Indian liquor at departures tax-free. This should be treated as exports. It will improve the brand image of Indian manufactured liquor in foreign markets," the recommendation reads.

This request comes at a time when Indian whisky brands are winning accolades across the globe. Early last month, Indri won the ‘best whisky in the world' award based on blind tasting in an annual competition organized by Whiskies of the World Awards 2023, where more than 100 whiskies from across the globe were evaluated.

The move to allow Indian whiskies at duty-free shops would also help create a market for them in some key global markets. Experts say India's export opportunity is limited to certain countries in the Middle East, Africa and the Far East. But Indian whiskies have not been able to reach key markets in Europe and the Americas due to issues like a fee on the export of alcoholic beverages, and because non-tariff barriers restrict such exports to the European Union and the UK.

Source: Live Mint
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Apple Security Chief Shares Company’s Concerns About Sideloading Apps On iPhones

Posted By: Ramesh Sharma Posted On: Nov 21, 2023

Google and Apple continue to voice their concern about the recent laws that force them to allow people to sideload apps on Android and iOS, respectively. But most of you already know that Android has always allowed installing apps from other app stores, which doesn't sit well with Apple and Tim Cook has repeatedly talked about the reasons.

Now, the company is being compelled to allow sideloading of apps, which is coming in early 2024 and Apple's security head is the latest Apple executive to speak openly about the matter and what the company fears when people get the choice to install apps from other platforms.

Ivan Krstic is Head of security engineering and architecture, and he was recently quoted in an interview and talked about the ‘misunderstanding' about iPhone users and how they might have to rely on other app stores to get some apps that aren't available on the App Store.

“The reality of what the alternative distribution requirements enable is that software that users in Europe need to use – sometimes business software, other times personal software, social software, things that they want to use – may only be available outside of the store, alternatively distributed,” Krstic was quoted saying here.

What he means is that if Apple opens iOS to other app stores, the developers would then prefer to distribute their apps through other app stores or websites, something we have seen Epic Games do for Fortnite on Android.

He talks about the security concerns and how the company would be worried about these third-party systems which might not be as secure at its App Store. While that's a fair point, the hidden agenda could also suggest the company is worried about losing its developer commission which goes up to 30 percent for hosting apps on the App Store and downloaded by millions of iPhone users.

The double talk has even made Google speak on the matter. Pichai was recently quoted warning people about sideloading apps and how the company doesn't vouch for such actions which could be dangerous for the users with possible malware infection or other malpractice. Either way, Apple has to comply with the EU rules which suggests the company might restrict the sideloading support to iPhone users in the region.

Source: News18
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City gas sector may finally seem some competition

Posted By: Vishal Maurya Posted On: Nov 20, 2023
CGD networks cover some 98% of India?s population. (Mint)

Consumers may soon have the power to choose between multiple operators of piped natural gas (PNG) and compressed natural gas (CNG) fuelling stations in different markets, where single operators have been operating so far without competition.

Pointing to this possibility, Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) chairman Anil Kumar Jain told Mint that the regulator would soon roll out new rules to allow for multiple natural gas operators to compete in various markets, especially those where infrastructure and marketing exclusivity for single companies is ending.

“However, it will be ensured that existing companies do not face any impact, such as new companies taking away attractive locations (with greater demand and footfalls), and that the new companies are ready to cater to remote and underserved areas," Jain said, adding that the market would be opened up through an open and fair process.

Infrastructure exclusivity refers to the exclusive right to not only use current pipelines and related infrastructure, but also the right to set up new infrastructure in the designated areas, while marketing exclusivity refers to the right to solely market and sell CNG and PNG in allocated areas. Exclusivity periods vary across licences. The maximum period for infrastructure exclusivity is 25 years and that for marketing eight years.

The regulator had to roll back a similar attempt in fiscal year 2021 after a pushback from the incumbents, and so the new plan may run into resistance as well. If it does work out, it would end the dominance of sole natural gas operators, and allow consumers the luxury of choosing gas providers.

Queries emailed to Indraprastha Gas Ltd, Mahanagar Gas Ltd and Gujarat Gas Ltd remained unanswered.

“In places like Delhi, marketing exclusivity has already ended, but it (gas distribution) has not yet been opened up, and previous efforts to open up the sector have been challenged legally. The regulator will have to bring the regulation with a balance as it would be difficult to ask new players to focus on regions with less demand," said Prashant Vashisht, senior vice-president and co-group head, corporate ratings, Icra Ltd.

Under the PNGRB Act, 2006, the regulator grants authorization to companies for developing city gas distribution (CGD) networks in specific areas of the country. CNG is predominantly used as an auto fuel and PNG is used in the domestic, commercial and industrial segments. The new rules would take effect once PNGRB issues a notification in this respect.

The development comes at a time when the government is looking to increase the share of gas in India's energy mix to 15% by 2030 from the current 6%. So far, CGD networks have been authorized for 300 markets, covering about 88% of the country's area and 98% of its population. Last month, the Union government launched the 12th round of bids for offering seven geographical areas in five states in the northeast and the Union territories of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh. The last date for submitting bids is 11 January 2024 and the regulator intends to finalize the award by March. Once the bids are completed, 92 cities will be covered by CGD operators.

Meanwhile, in a bid to boost CGD adoption in the country, the Union cabinet has approved new guidelines for natural gas pricing following recommendations by the Kirit Parikh-led committee, paving the way for linking domestic natural gas prices in India to global crude prices.

Following the change, the price of natural gas is calculated at 10% of the monthly average of the Indian crude basket, which is a weighted average of Dubai and Oman (sour) and Brent crude (sweet) oil prices.

Under the new regime, a floor price as well as a ceiling price were introduced for operators to source gas from oil and gas companies. Effectively, that would shield CGD and CNG operators from volatility in international prices. For the record, the upper and lower ceiling, respectively, are $4 per million metric British thermal unit (mmBtu) and $6.50 per mmBtu under the Administered Price Mechanism.

According to a report by Icra released in September, the implementation of the Kirit Parikh committee recommendations in April has helped gas operators improve their cost economics, resulting in the lowering of domestic gas prices.

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Euro 2024 Qualifiers

Posted By: Aditya Gogoi Posted On: Nov 18, 2023

Federico Chiesa scored two first-half goals and defending champion Italy beat North Macedonia 5-2 Friday to gain a measure of revenge and move closer to qualifying for the European Championship.

Italy now needs only a draw against Ukraine on Monday to secure a spot at next year's tournament in Germany.

North Macedonia kept Italy from qualifying for last year's World Cup with a 1-0 playoff win over the Azzurri in Palermo.

Follow all the action from the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 including the World Cup schedule, World Cup 2023 results, and ICC Cricket World Cup points table. Players are vying to top the World Cup 2023 Most Runs and World Cup 2023 Most Wickets charts.

But, North Macedonia had already been eliminated from contention before its latest visit to Italy and the Azzurri quickly took control when fullback Matteo Darmian scored 17 minutes in at the Stadio Olimpico with a header following a corner for his first national team goal in more than eight years,

Chiesa, who also had a goal disallowed for offside early on, scored his first by using one touch to launch in a long shot. Then he scored another with a looping effort in first-half added time.

Substitute Jani Atanasov pulled one back for North Macedonia with a header early in the second half and then scored again with a shot that deflected in off Italy defender Francesco Acerbi to make it a nervy ending for coach Luciano Spalletti's team.

But Giacomo Raspadori finished off a counterattack for Italy in the 81st and Stephan El Shaarawy added another in stoppage time to restore the three-goal advantage.

READ: Euro 2024 Qualifiers: Denmark Secure Finals Qualification With 2-1 Win Over Slovenia

Italy and Ukraine now each have 13 points but Italy holds the advantage after beating Ukraine 2-1 in September.

England, which beat Malta 2-0 and has 19 points, won the group.

North Macedonia trails in fourth place with seven points and Malta has zero.

A weak penalty kick from Italy midfielder Jorginho was saved by goalkeeper Stole Dimitrievski — bringing back memories of two key missed penalties by Jorginho during World Cup qualifying.

Dimitrievski, who plays for Rayo Vallecano, recently kept a clean sheet in a 0-0 draw with Real Madrid.

Ukraine will host Italy in Germany — at the stadium of Bundesliga leader Bayer Leverkusen — because it cannot play international games at home for security reasons during the military invasion by Russia.

Source: News18
Related Posts: EURO 2024

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India to grow pharma sector to $200 billion by 2030

Posted By: Ramesh Sharma Posted On: Nov 18, 2023
The PLI scheme and the lure of the Indian market has attracted companies like GE Healthcare.

The government aims to grow the pharmaceutical industry by about four times to $200 billion by 2030, Arunish Chawla, secretary, department of pharmaceuticals, said on Friday.

The sector should be able to achieve the target through the help of industrial academia and production-linked incentives announced for industrial research and development, he said on the sidelines of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) summit.

“We are already achieving double-digit growth year on year. We need to sustain the momentum and accelerate further and also adapt to the structural changes that are coming in the industry and the medical technology sector the world over," Chawla said.

And to rise to that challenge, we have initiated the production-led incentive scheme, but not just for formulations, but also bulk drugs, drug intermediates, and the meditech sector, which are the rising sectors of our economy," he added added.

“And in these sectors, along with this, we are strengthening the industrial support schemes, including common facilities and assistance that we can provide to the industry, dovetailed with research and development, where both public and private resources can be brought together.

These, put together, will help us achieve the challenge, and we are working very closely with the industry to do that."

The PLI scheme and the lure of the Indian market has attracted companies like GE Healthcare, which are planning to scale up manufacturing in the country for medical technology.

Under the PLI scheme for medical devices, a total of 26 projects have been approved, with a committed investment of ₹1,206 crore. Out of this an investment of ₹714 crore has been achieved.

Fourteen projects producing 37 products have been commissioned, and domestic manufacturing of high-end medical devices has started. These include linear accelerator, MRI scan, CT-scan, mammogram, C-Arm, MRI coils and high-end X-ray tubes.

Chawla said that India's contribution to global manufacturing also is set to double by 2030.

“India has the potential to grow 3-4 times in value by achieving a shift from a 10% share of pharma and medtech in the manufacturing sector in 2020 to a 20% share in 2030," he added.

India has the largest number of FDA- approved plants in the US and exports to 200 countries with value accounting to more than $50 billion. Further, two-thirds of global vaccines for World Health Organization requirements are met by India.

“Innovation is on the rise in India-medtech, assistive technology, and smart medicine are evolving but a streamlined innovation strategy is required," he said.

“India for India makes sense. And China for the world used to be the biggest title. Today, I want to say China and India for the world, not only China. We need to balance. You don't put all your eggs in one basket. India will need to make sure the infrastructure exists for these companies to grow. We will have much more manufacturing," said Elie Chaillot, president and chief executive of Intercontinental GE HealthCare told Mint in September.

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Source: Live Mint
Related Posts: PHARMA SECTOR,PHARMA,PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY,PHARMACEUTICAL

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