PIB Analysis (Prelims Focus) Date : 8/11/2018

PIB ANALYSIS FOR UPSC CIVIL SERVICES EXAM

  1. Public-Private Partnership for Airports
  2. Advanced Motor Fuels Technology Collaboration Programme under International Energy Agency
  3. Enemy Property Act
  4. Sugar Export
  5. Central Tribal University

1 . Public-Private Partnership for Airports

Cabinet approves leasing out six airports – Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Guwahati, Thiruvananthapuram and Mangaluru through PPP

About the release

  • 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).

What are Public Private Partnerships?

  • There is no one widely accepted definition of public-private partnerships (PPP).
  • It is a long-term contract between a private party and a government entity, for providing a public asset or service, in which the private party bears significant risk and management responsibility, and remuneration is linked to performance.

Benefits

  1. PPP in infrastructure projects brings efficiency in service delivery, expertise, enterprise and professionalism apart from harnessing the needed investments in the public sector.
  2. 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.
  3. 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).
  4. 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.

Background

  • 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. .

2 . Advanced Motor Fuels Technology Collaboration Programme

About Advanced Motor Fuel Technology Collaboration Programme (AMFTCP)

  • 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.

About the Release

  • 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.

Objective of Joining AMFTCP

  • 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 reformulatedfuels (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.

Benefits

  • 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 the country
  • Other 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.

3 . Enemy Property Act

What is Enemy Property Act

  • When nations go to war, they often seize the properties in their countries of the citizens and corporations of the enemy country.
  • This happened during the First and the Second World Wars when both the United States and the United Kingdom seized properties of German corporations and citizens.
  • Properties that are seized under these circumstances are referred to as ‘alien properties’ or ‘enemy properties’. The idea behind seizing these properties is that an enemy country should not be allowed to take advantage of its assets in the other country during war.
  • India too seized properties belonging to Pakistani and Chinese citizens when it was at war with these countries.
  • When wars broke out between India and China in 1962, and India and Pakistan in 1965 and 1971, the central government took over properties of citizens of China and Pakistan in India under the Defence of India Acts.
  • These Acts defined an ‘enemy’ as a country that committed an act of aggression against India, and its citizens.
  • The properties of enemies in India were classified as enemy property.
  • The properties included land, buildings, shares held in companies, gold and jewellery of the citizens of enemy countries. The responsibility of the administration of enemy properties was handed over to the Custodian of Enemy Property, an office under the central government.
  • The Enemy Property Act gave enemy citizens certain rights with respect to their properties vested in the Custodian.
  • But the ambiguity in their rights and the powers of the Custodian to administer these properties resulted in disputes being raised before the courts.
  • Some of these disputes related to Indian citizens challenging whether they could inherit enemy properties belonging to their ancestors who were nationals of enemy countries.
  • The Supreme Court settled some of these questions in 2005. It ruled that the Custodian of Enemy Property was administering the property as a trustee, and the enemy continued to be its owner.
  • Therefore, on the death of the enemy, the enemy property should be inherited by their legal heirs.
  • In 2016 a bill was passed to makes the Custodian the owner of enemy property retrospectively from 1968.
  • Second, it voids the legal sales undertaken by enemies of enemy properties since 1968. This means that a person who may have bought an enemy property in good faith when such sale and purchase was legal, now stands to lose the property.
  • Third, it prohibits Indian citizens who are legal heirs of enemies from inheriting enemy property, and brings them within the definition of ‘enemy’.
  • Fourth, it prohibits civil courts and other authorities from hearing certain disputes relating to enemy property.
  • The new law creates a situation where an Indian citizen who has legally bought and developed an enemy property after 1968, will be divested of his rights in the property. This situation could be challenged in court as a violation of Article 14 , which guarantees the right to equality and protects people from arbitrary actions of the government.
  • Further, following the passage of the Bill, judicial recourse on enemy property disputes will only be available before High Courts and the Supreme Court, limiting the options available to people whose property rights have been affected.
  • Over the last decade, it has taken an SC judgment, six Ordinances and a law passed by Parliament to address the ownership issue of enemy properties. It remains to be seen whether this brings finality to the debate.

About the release

  1. In 2017, through an amendment to this Act, vide Section 8A, the Custodian of Enemy Property has been empowered for sale of enemy property.
  2. 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.

Impact

  1. 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.
  2. With the amendment of 2017, an enabling legislative provision was created for the disposal of enemy property.
  3. With the approval, now, of the procedure and mechanism for sale of enemy shares an enabling framework has been institutionalized for their sale.

Major Impact

  • 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.

4 . Sugar Export to China

Sugar exports from India to China to begin soon

About Indian Sugar Production

  • India is the largest producer of sugar in the world with 32 MMT production in 2018.
  • India produces sugar of all three grades- raw, refined and white.
  • Indian sugar is also of a high quality and is Dextran free because of the minimum time taken from cut to crush.
  • India is in a position to become a regular and dependable exporter of high quality sugar in significant volumes to China.

About the release

  • India plans to export 2 MT of raw sugar to China beginning from next year.
  • Raw sugar is the second product after non-basmati rice that China will import from India.
  • It is a move to reduce the USD 60 billion trade deficit that China has with India.
  • India’s export to China in 2017-18 amounted to USD 33 billion while imports from China stood at USD 76.2 billion.

5 . Central Tribal University

  • The Central Tribal University of Andhra Pradesh will be set up in Relli village of Vizianagaram District as provided under the Thirteenth Schedule to the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014
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