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Governing India through fiscal math

GS-III: Governing India through fiscal math Context While it is important for a government to pursue a sound economic policy, including management of the public finances, it is yet another matter to make a fetish of any one aspect of it. The latter appears to govern this government’s approach to policy when the fiscal deficit is given pride of place in its self-assessment. Thread of fiscal discipline Soon after the Budget for 2019-20 was presented, one of the Financ

Fiscal wheels must also roll in order to make monetary policy effective.

GS-III: Fiscal wheels must also roll in order to make monetary policy effective Context Through four successive reductions in this year, RBI has reduced the repo rate by 110 basis points to 5.4%. Status of the rate cut The economy has been slow to respond to these incremental monetary stimuli.  Quarterly growth data show a continuing slowdown, mainly driven by sluggish demand, due to both external and domestic factors. There is substantial excess capacity in the manufactu

Government responds to downturn with steps to boost growth

GS-III: Government responds to the downturn with steps to boost growth Context The announcements come at a time when the perception that the slowdown has been aggravating in recent weeks and spreading across sectors. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a partial rollback of the enhanced surcharge on foreign portfolio investors (FPI) levied in the Budget and indicated a review of the surcharge levy for high net worth individuals as well. Announcements Surcharge on long an

World Bank’s ease of doing business ranking (India 63rd Rank)

World Bank’s ease of doing business ranking (India 63rd Rank) Context: India hiked 14 places to the 63rd position on the World Bank’s ease of doing business ranking India is  among the top 10 performers on the list for the third time in a row New Zealand, Singapore and Hong Kong topped World Bank applauded the reform efforts undertaken by the India in its report India is the first country of its type to jump this year by 14 position. From 140 to 63: 1

Special Drawing Rights: IMF

Special Drawing Rights: IMF Recently, the Finance Minister of India opposed a general allocation of new Special Drawing Rights (SDR) by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) because it might not be effective in easing Covid-19-driven financial pressures. The Finance Minister was concerned that such a major liquidity injection could produce potentially costly side-effects if countries used the funds for irrelevant purposes. The new SDR allocation will

UNDP and PCMC join hands for ‘first social impact bond’

 UNDP and PCMC join hands for ‘first social impact bond’ Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation, Pune has recently signed an MoU with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) India to co-create India’s first Social Impact Bond (SIB). This is the first time that a government body will act as the ‘outcome funder’ in a bond, whereas traditionally most government-funded public projects require large and early investments by the govern

IFSCA becomes Associate Member of IOSCO

 IFSCA becomes Associate Member of IOSCO The International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA) has become an Associate Member of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO). The headquarters of IOSCO is at Madrid, Spain. The IOSCO is the international organization of the world’s securities regulators, covering more than 95% of the world’s securities markets, and is also the global standard-setter for the se

Currency Swap Agreement between SL & India

Currency Swap Agreement between SL & India The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) settled a $400 million currency swap facility from the Reserve Bank (RBI) of India. What is a Currency Swap Facility? The term swap means exchange. Under this agreement, two contracting countries loan each other a specified amount in local currencies. Currency swap agreements involve trade in local currencies, where countries pay for imports and exports at pre-determined rates of exchange without

FSDC (Financial Stability and Development Council)

FSDC (Financial Stability and Development Council) With a view to strengthening and institutionalizing the mechanism for maintaining financial stability, enhancing inter-regulatory coordination and promoting financial sector development, the Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC) was set up by the Government as the apex level forum in December 2010. The Chairman of the FSDC is the Finance Minister and its members include the heads of financial sector Regulators (RBI, SEBI, P

Retail Direct Scheme and The Integrated Ombudsman

Retail Direct Scheme and The Integrated Ombudsman Scheme Context: This Topic is important for UPSE Prelims and GS Paper 3. How will the new scheme allow small investors to buy or sell government securities? Why were the three different ombudsman schemes repealed? The story so far: The RBI had announced proposals for the Retail Direct Scheme for investors in government securities and the Integrated Ombudsman Scheme in February. The schemes were unveiled by the Prime Minister on Novem


INDIA'S FIRST BULLION EXCHANGE The Prime Minister recently launched India's first international bullion exchange - India International Bullion Exchange (IIBX)- in Gujarat. The bullion exchange was launched at the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) GIFT City in Gandhinagar, Gujarat. Bullion refers to physical gold and silver of high purity often kept in the form of bars, ingots, or coins. It can be considered legal tender and is often held as reserves by central

Sustainable Finance for the Future

Sustainable Finance for the Future A Committee on Sustainable Finance, appointed by the International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA), has submitted its report on Sustainable Finance, which includes recommendations for the development of the carbon market, among other things. What exactly is Sustainable Finance? Sustainable finance is defined as investment decisions that consider an economic activity's or project's environmental, social, and governance (ESG)

India’s First Sovereign Green Bonds Framework

India’s First Sovereign Green Bonds Framework The final Sovereign Green Bonds Framework of India was just authorised by the Union Minister for Finance & Corporate Affairs. It will be possible to raise money for green projects by issuing sovereign green bonds. What is the framework for sovereign green bonds? The Framework closely follows the Prime Minister's explanation of India's "Panchamrit" pledges at the Conference of Parties (COP) 26 in Glas

Financial Consumer Protection (FCP)

Financial Consumer Protection (FCP) The OECD recently published a draft of proposed revisions to their 2011 High-level Principles on Financial Consumer Protection (FCP). More on the news: The OECD is working on ways to improve financial consumer protection, including determining what is needed to help consumers gain the confidence, knowledge, information, security, and choices they need to fully participate in financial markets. The OECD's principles address three

Sovereign Green Bonds

Sovereign Green Bonds The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will issue Sovereign Green Bonds for the first time in the current fiscal year in two tranches of Rs 8,000 crore each. On January 25 and February 9, the RBI would issue green bonds for five and ten years worth Rs 4,000 crore each. In November 2022, the government released the blueprint for the sovereign green bond. About the green bond: Companies, nations, and international organizations all offer green bonds, which guara

26th Financial Stability Report (FSR)

26th Financial Stability Report (FSR) The Reserve Bank published the Financial Stability Report's 26th edition.  The report details the Sub-Committee of the Financial Stability and Development Council's (FSDC) collective assessment of threats to financial stability and the financial system's resilience. India's banks and non-bank lenders are capable of withstanding even the worst macroeconomic stress, according to the RBI's most recent Financial Stability Repor

National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA)

National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) From the current fiscal year, auditors of 1,000 big Indian publicly traded businesses will need to submit transparency reports to the National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) in the required manner. It will raise investor confidence in auditors and enhance their credibility. About NFRA: NFRA was established by the Indian government in 2018 in accordance with section 132 (1) of the Companies Act, 2013. It is a regulator of audi


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