Daily Current Affairs (English) - 07.02.2018


The International Spice Conference

  • The third edition of the International Spice Conference is being held in Jaipur From February 4th-7th, 2018.
  • The main theme of this conference is 'Management Disruptions & Through Transformation and Collaboration'.
  • More than 750 delegates participated in this conference from different countries including international Spice Associations, policy makers and representatives of farmers.


Maldives Crisis

  • On 6th February the supreme court of Maldives dismissed a petition filed by Justice Abdulla Yameen Gayoom of 15 days for arrest and two judges, including Chief Justice Abdulla Saeed. The remaining three judges of the Supreme Court said they were withdrawing their first order "in light of the concerns raised by the president. Earlier in the day, the president claimed that the Supreme Court judges were plotting to overthrow him. "I used to declare a national emergency because there was no other way to investigate these judges,"
  • Gayoom said in a television address address to the nation. He also accused the chief justice of trying to illegally impeach him and the attorney general sacked. On 1st February , the Supreme Court had ordered the government to revoke terrorism charges against nine Opposition leaders, including exiled former President Mohamed Nasheed. But the government had maintained that it would oppose any order by the top court to arrest or impeach President Gayoom. It claimed that the Supreme Court was obstructing the government from its responsibilities.
  • On 6th February, President Gayoom had asked him to decide who will lead their country. Gayoom, the half-brother of the country's former leader Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, has crushed the Opposition in the Maldives. The country's first democratically-elected President Mohamed Nasheed was jailed in 2013 for ordering the arrest of a senior judge Nasheed later fled to Britain and received asylum He now lives in Sri Lanka. Most of President Gayoom's other political rivals, who had not gone in exile, were jailed.
  • The president also had a fallout with his half-brother, and lawmakers loyal to him has joined forces with Nasheed against the president. The Indian government on February 6 said it was "disturbed" by the declaration of emergency in the Maldives. Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen declared a 15-day state of emergency on Monday after defying a Supreme Court directive to release political prisoners.


Chile will phase out coal power generation

  • Chile will phase out coal power generation.The Energy Ministry of Chile has secured an agreement with its major utilities not to build any more coal plants, unless they are fitted with technology for the emissions underground.
  • A working group will develop an existing coal capacity.The fuel generated 35% of the South American country's electricity in 2015.
  • The UK and Canada are leading the campaign to "power past coal" As of December 2017, they have signed up 24 other countries, including France, Mexico and New Zealand, but not including Chile Eight sub-national governments and 24 companies also joined
  • Chile's electricity companies pledged in the joint statement to the country's goal to generate 70% of power from renewable sources by 2050
  • Citing cost reductions in wind and solar power, the "sees a increasingly renewable future, where thermoelectric generation will not be the main source of energy.


Government doubled import duty on sugar to 100 percent.

  • The Central government doubled import duty on sugar to 100 percent and raised duty on Gram to 40 percent of domestic farmers.At present, customs duty or import tax on sugar is 50 percent and that on chana (chickpeas) is 30 percent cent.
  • The notification issued by the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) "seeks to increase import duty on the current 50 per cent to 100 per cent. The move is aimed at curbing cheaper imports and guaranteed remunerative prices to domestic growers.
  • The sugar industry has been demanding hike in import duty as ex-mill rates to fall below the cost of production, affecting their ability to cane payment to farmers on time.
  • India's sugar production estimate has recently been revised upwards by 4 percent to 26.1 million tonnes in the current 2017-18 marketing year (October-September) as against 2016-17 in 20.3 MT, according to data. The consumption is pegged at 25 MT for this year.

India has achieved the highest tea exports

  • India has achieved the highest tea exports during the calendar year 2017 (Jan-Dec) after 36 years, pegged at 240.68 million kgs. The previous record was in 1981 when the total tea exports reached 241.25 million kgs.
  • The exports increased by 18.23 million kgs (8.20%) during 2017 vis-a-vis 2016. The total value of the exports during 2017 stood at Rs. 4731.66 crores, increasing by Rs. 263.55 crores (5.90%).
  • Similarly, the total value of the exports in US $ was 726.76 million, an increase of 61.60 million US $ (9.26%) as compared to last year.
  • Tea exports to countries like Iran ,Egypt, China, UAE and Sri Lanka have shown a significant increase in 2017 in comparison to previous year.