- Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement
- PLI Scheme for White Goods
- Exercise SLINEX
Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement
Focus: GS II- International Relations
Why in News?
The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Textilessaid India is looking to advance the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with Bangladesh.
About India’s CEPA agreements
- India has signed CEPAs with South Korea and Japan and the one with UAE is expected to increase bilateral trade in goods to USD 100 billion within five years of the signed agreement and increase trade in services to USD 15 billion, leading to wider social and economic opportunities in both nations.
- CEPAs are a kind of free trade pacts but these agreements or cooperation agreements are more comprehensive than Free Trade Agreements.
- CEPA usually covers negotiation on the trade in services and investment, and other areas of economic partnership. It may even consider negotiation on areas such as trade facilitation and customs cooperation, competition, and Intellectual Property Rights. It also looks into the regulatory aspect of trade and encompasses an agreement covering the regulatory issues.
Difference between CECA and CEPA
- CECA – Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement
- CEPA – Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement
- The major “technical” difference between a CECA and CEPA is that CECA involve only “tariff reduction/elimination in a phased manner on listed/all items except the negative list and tariff rate quota (TRQ) items. CEPA also covers the trade in services and investment and other areas of economic partnership”.
- Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement is a wider term than Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement and has the widest coverage.
- Bangladesh and India are South Asian neighbours and Diplomatic Relations between the two countries was followed by the visit of Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1972 where there she had signed the Indo-Bangladesh Treaty of Friendship, Co-operation and Peace Relations, popularly known as the ‘Indira-Mujib Treaty of 1972, with then Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
- The relations between the two countries have usually been friendly, although sometimes there are border disputes.
- They are common members of SAARC, BIMSTEC, IORA and the Commonwealth.
- The two countries share many cultural ties. In particular, Bangladesh and the east Indian state of West Bengal are Bengali-speaking.
- In 1971, the Bangladesh Liberation War broke out between East Pakistan and West Pakistan; India intervened in December 1971 on behalf of East Pakistan and helped secure East Pakistan’s independence from Pakistan as the country of Bangladesh.
PLI Scheme for White Goods
Focus: GS III- Indian Economy
Why in News?
Government reopens application window for PLI Scheme for White Goods (ACs and LED Lights) from 10th March to 25th April 2022 to give second chance to prospective investors to take benefits of the Scheme
- The prime objective of the PLI scheme is to make manufacturing in India globally competitive by removing sectoral disabilities, creating economies of scale and ensuring efficiencies.
- It is designed to create complete component ecosystem in India and make India an integral part of the global supply chains.
- The scheme is expected to attract global investments, generate large scale employment opportunities and enhance exports substantially.
- The PLI Scheme for White Goods shall extend an incentive of 4% to 6% on incremental sales of goods manufactured in India for a period of five years to companies engaged in manufacturing of Air Conditioners and LED Lights.
- Different segments have been earmarked for different types of components separately to specifically target global investments into desired areas.
- Selection of companies for the Scheme shall be done so as to incentivize manufacturing of components or sub-assemblies which are not manufactured in India presently with sufficient capacity. Mere assembly of finished goods shall not be incentivized.
- Incentives shall be open to companies making brown field or green field Investments.
- An entity availing benefits under any other PLI Scheme of Govt. India will not be eligible under this scheme for the same products but the entity may take benefits under other applicable schemes of Govt. of India or schemes of State governments.
- The Scheme will be implemented as a pan India scheme and is not specific to any location, area or segment of population.
- The Scheme is expected to be instrumental in achieving growth rates that are much higher than existing ones for AC and LED industries, develop complete component eco-systems in India and create global champions manufacturing in India.
- They will have to meet the compulsory BIS and BEE Quality standards for sales into domestic market and applicable standards for global markets.
- It will also lead to investments in innovation and research and development and upgradation of technology.
Focus: GS III- Security Challenges
Why in News?
The Ninth Edition of India – Sri Lanka Bilateral Maritime Exercise SLINEX (Sri Lanka–India Naval Exercise) is scheduled at Visakhapatnam from 07 Mar to 10 Mar 2022.
- The exercise is being conducted in two phases; the Harbour Phase at Visakhapatnam on 07-08 Mar 22 followed by the Sea Phase on 09-10 Mar 22 in the Bay of Bengal.
- Sri Lanka Navy will be represented by SLNS Sayurala, an advanced offshore patrol vessel and the Indian Navy by INS Kirch, a guided missile corvette.
- SLINEX aims to enhance inter-operability, improve mutual understanding and exchange best practices and procedures for multi-faceted maritime operations between both navies.
- The Harbour Phase would include professional, cultural, sporting and social exchanges.
- Exercises during Sea Phase will include surface and anti-air weapon firing exercises, seamanship evolutions, aviation operations including cross deck flying, advanced tactical manoeuvres and special forces operations at sea.
- These will further enhance the high degree of inter-operability already existing between the two navies.
- SLINEX exemplifies the deep maritime engagement between India and Sri Lanka and has grown in scope over the years to strengthen mutual cooperation, in consonance with India’s policy of ‘Neighbourhood First’ and Hon’ble PMs vision of ‘Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR)’.