Recent Cabinet Decisions
- Cabinet approves leasing out six airports – Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Guwahati, Thiruvananthapuram and Mangaluru through PPP The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved the following:
- “In-principle” approval for leasing out six airports of AAI viz. Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Guwahati, Thiruvananthapuram and Mangaluru for operation, management and development under Public Private Partnership (PPP) through Public Private Partnership Appraisal Committee (PPPAC). Constitution of an Empowered Group of Secretaries headed by CEO, NITI Aayog with Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs and Secretary, Department of Expenditure to decide on any issue falling beyond the scope of PPPAC.
- PPP in infrastructure projects brings efficiency in service delivery, expertise, enterprise and professionalism apart from harnessing the needed investments in the public sector.
- The PPP in airport infrastructure projects has brought World class infrastructure at airports, delivery of efficient and timely services to the airport passengers, augmenting revenue stream to the Airports Authority of India without making any investment, etc. of these, for development of Greenfield Airports at Hyderabad and Bengaluru. Presently, the airports being managed under the PPP model include Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Cochin.The PPP airports in India have been ranked among the top 5 in their respective categories by the Airports Council International (ACI) in terms of Airport Service Quality (ASQ).
- While these PPP experiments have helped create world class airports, it has also helped AAI in enhancing its revenues and focusing on developing airports and Air Navigation infrastructure in the rest of the country.
- The increase in domestic and international air travel in India combined with congestion at most airports, and the strong traffic growth at the 5 airports which were privatized over a decade ago has attracted the attention of several international operators and investors.
- The airport sector is the top contender among infrastructure sectors in terms of international interest. International operators and investors prefer brownfield airport expansion opportunities with having more than 3-4 million passenger capacity.
- The airport sector may provide an immediate opportunity to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) by adoption of a PPP approach.
- Therefore, it has been decided to lease out six airports viz. Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Guwahati, Thiruvanthapuram and Mangaluru of AAI in the first phase for development, operation and management under PPP. This is expected to enhance the revenue to AAI and increased economic development in these areas in terms of job creation and related infrastructure.
Cabinet approves MoU between India and Italy for continuing training and education in the fields of Labour and Employment
- The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Italy for training and education in the fields of Labour and Employment.
- The MoU will facilitate expansion of the training and education activities to promote decent work in the world of work, through:
- Conducting joint training programmes on training methodologies and techniques;
- Developing new training modules for different social partners;
- organizing customized training programmers in different themes on labour and employment; undertaking evaluation of training methodologies;
- exchanging of good practices in training programmes, particularly in the context of labour administration; assisting each other in the delivery and facilitation of the training modules and organizing study visits; and
- exchanging of trainers for sharing of knowledge and information.
- The major impact of the MoU would be up-gradation of technical capacities of both the institutions in responding to the challenges emanating from transformations in the world of work.
- It will enhance the technical capabilities of developing and organising international training programmes and the evolution of V.V.Giri National Labour Institute (VVGNLI) as a leading training institution in the Asia-Pacific region. The MoU will expand its outreach to wide range of social partners from the entire Asia Pacific Region.
Cabinet apprised of India joining as Member of Advanced Motor Fuels Technology Collaboration Programme under International Energy Agency
- The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has been apprised of India joining as Member of Advanced Motor Fuels Technology Collaboration Programme (AMF TCP) under International Energy Agency (IEA) on 9thMay, 2018.
- AMF TCP works under the framework of International Energy Agency (IEA) to which India has “Association” status since 30thMarch, 2017.
- The primary goal of joining AMF TCP by Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas (MoP&NG) is to facilitate the market introduction of Advanced motor fuels/ Alternate fuels with an aim to bring down emissions and achieve higher fuel efficiency in transport sector.
- AMF TCP also provides an opportunity for fuel analysis, identifying new/ alternate fuels for deployment in transport sector and allied R&D activities for reduction in emissions in fuel intensive sectors.
- The R&D work in AMF TCP is carried out within individual projects called “Annex”. Over the years, more than 50 Annexes have been initiated in AMF TCP and a number of fuels have been covered in previous Annexes such as reformulated fuels (gasoline & diesel), biofuels (ethanol, biodiesel etc.), synthetic fuels (methanol, Fischer- Tropsch, DME etc.) and gaseous fuels. R&D Institutions of Public sector Oil Marketing companies and Automobile Testing Agencies such as ARAI, CIRT, ICAT etc. have State-of-the-art facilities and resources will also be a contributor to the Annex(s) participated by MoP&NG.
- Prime Minister at UrjaSangam, 2015 had directed to reduce the import in energy sector by at least 10% by 2022. Subsequently, MoP&NG has come up with a detailed action plan wherein Biofuels, Advanced/ alternate fuels and fuel efficiency play a major role. Association with AMF TCP will help MoP&NG in furthering its efforts in identification & deployment of suitable fuels for transport sector in respect of higher efficiency and lesser emissions.
- Government of India has recently notified National Policy on Biofuels-2018 which focusses on giving impetus to R&D in field of advanced biofuels such as 2G Ethanol, Bio-CNG, biomethanol, Drop-in fuels, DME etc.
- These advanced fuels can be produced from various kind of wastes such as crop residues, Municipal solid waste, Industrial waste, waste gases, Food waste, plastic etc. Though some of these advanced biofuels have successfully been deployed in few countries, India is still awaiting its deployment in transport sector. These advanced fuels are presently in their early stages of development in our Country and necessitate extensive R&D for making these fuels a viable option for meeting our energy needs.
- Association with AMF will help MoP&NG in identifying advanced biofuels suitable for deployment in transport sector in near future. In such cases, experience of member countries in deploying advanced biofuels will be an additional benefit for MoP&NG.
- The benefits of participation in AMF TCP are shared costs and pooled technical resources.
- The duplication of efforts is avoided and national Research and Development capabilities are strengthened. There is an information exchange about best practices, network of researchers and linking research with practical implementation. After becoming member, India will initiate R&D in other areas of its interest in advanced biofuels and other motor fuels in view of their crucial role in substituting fossil fuel imports.
- AMF TCP is an international platform for co-operation among countries to promote cleaner and more energy efficient fuels & vehicle technologies. The activities of AMF TCP relate to R&D, deployment and dissemination of Advanced Motor Fuels and looks upon the transport fuel issues in a systemic way taking into account the production, distribution and end-use related aspects.
- Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas, Government of India has joined AMF TCP as its 16th member on 9thMay, 2018. The other member Countries of AMF TCP are USA, China, Japan, Canada, Chile, Israel, Germany, Austria, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Spain, Republic of Korea, Switzerland and Thailand.
Cabinet approves Laying down procedure and mechanism for sale of enemy shares.
- The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved the mechanism and procedure for sale of the enemy shares. Details are as follows: ‘In principle’ approval has been accorded for sale of enemy shares under the Custody of Ministry of Home Affairs/ Custodian of Enemy Property of India (CEPI), as per sub-section 1 of section 8A of the Enemy Property Act, 1968.Department of Investment and Public Asset Management has been authorized under the provisions of sub-section 7 of section 8A of the Enemy Property Act, 1968, to sell the same. Sale proceeds are to be deposited as disinvestment proceeds in the Government Account maintained by Ministry of Finance.
- A total number of 6,50,75,877 shares in 996 companies of 20,323 shareholders are under the custody of CEPI. of these 996 companies, 588 are functional/ active companies, 139 of these are listed with remaining being unlisted.
- The process for selling these shares is to be approved by the Alternative Mechanism (AM) under the Chairmanship of Finance Minister and comprising Minister of Road Transport and Highway and Home Minister.
- The AM will be supported by a High-Level Committee (HLC) of officers co-chaired by the Secretary, DIPAM and Secretary, MHA (with representatives from DEA, DLA, M/o Corporate Affairs and CEPI) that would give its recommendations with regard to quantum, price/price-band, principles/ mechanisms for sale of shares, etc.
- Before initiation of sale of any Enemy Shares, the CEPI shall certify that the sale of the Enemy Shares is not in contravention of any judgment, decree or order of any court, tribunal or other authority or any law for the time being in force and can be disposed of by the Government.
- The advisors/ intermediaries like Merchant Bankers, Legal Adviser, Selling Brokers etc. as may be required for the disposal of movable enemy property, will be appointed by DIPAM through an open tender/limited tender process. An Inter-Ministerial Group (IMG) will guide the process of sale.
- In the Act of 1968, the definition of “enemy” was as follows: “enemy” or “enemy subject” or “enemy firm” means a person or country who or which was an enemy, an enemy subject or an enemy firm, as the case may be, under the Defence of India Act and Rules, but does not include a citizen of India.
- In the amendment of 2017, this was substituted by “…. including his legal heir or successor, whether or not citizen of India or the citizen of a country which is not an enemy or the enemy…. who has changed his nationality”.
- The decision will lead to monetization of enemy shares that had been lying dormant for decades since coming into force and the Enemy Property Act in 1968.
- With the amendment of 2017, an enabling legislative provision was created for the disposal of enemy property.
- With the approval, now, of the procedure and mechanism for sale of enemy shares an enabling framework has been institutionalized for their sale.
- The decision will lead to monetization of movable enemy property lying dormant for decades. Sale proceeds from this may be used for development and social welfare programmes.
- The Enemy Property Act, 1968 provides for continued vesting of enemy property vested in the CEPI under the Defence of India Rules, 1962 and the Defence of India Rules, 1971, (w.e.f. 27.09.1997).
- In 2017, through an amendment to this Act, vide Section 8A, the CEPI has been empowered for sale of enemy property. Further,
- “ Notwithstanding anything contained in any judgment, decree or order of any court, tribunal or other authority or any law for the time being in force, the Custodian may, within such time as may be specified by the Central Government in this behalf, dispose of whether by sale or otherwise, as the case may be, with prior approval of the Central Government, by general or special order, enemy properties vested in him immediately before the date of commencement of the Enemy Property (Amendment and Validation) Act, 2017 in accordance with the provisions of this Act, as amended by the Enemy Property (Amendment and Validation) Act, 2017”.
- According to amendment, as in sub-section 7 of section 8A of the Enemy Property Act, 1968, Central Government may direct that disposal of enemy property shall be made by any other authority or Ministry or Department instead of Custodian.
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