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Daily Current Affairs – 2020

Topic: For Prelims and Mains

China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)

29thNovember 2019

Why in news?

Pakistan rejected United States’ notion of Beijing being the sole benefactor of its China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

 

China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) :

  • The CPEC is the flagship project of the multi-billion dollar Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), a pet project of Chinese President Xi Jinping, aimed at enhancing Beijing’s influence around the world through China-funded infrastructure projects.
  • It was launched in 2015 and passes through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and Baluchistan.
  • CPEC eventually aims at linking the city of Gwadar in South Western Pakistan to China‘s North Western region Xinjiang (Not Tibet region) through a vast network of highways and railways.
  • The 3,000 km-long China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) consists of highways, railways, and pipelines.
  • The CPEC, once completed is expected to cut short the trade route for China‘s oil imports by 6000 miles.
  • It is expected to open up a brand-new strategic gateway for China to tap into African, West Asian and South Asian trade.
  • India protests against the project as it pass through the Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, breaching its’ territorial integrity.
  • The proposed project will be financed by heavily-subsidised loans that will be disbursed to the Government of Pakistan by Chinese banking giants such as Exim Bank of China, China Development Bank, and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China.

Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) :

  • BRI consisting of the land-based belt, ‘Silk Road Economic Belt’, and ‘Maritime Silk Road’, aims to connect the East Asian economic region with the European economic circle and runs across the continents of Asia, Europe and Africa.
  • It is China’s ambitious project announced in 2013.
  • It covers about 65% of the world population, 60% of the world GDP and over 70 countries in six economic corridors.
  • China is spending almost $1 trillion to revive and renew the overland and maritime trade links between China, Europe, West Asia, and East Africa through construction of modern ports linked to high-speed road and rail corridors.

Facts for Prelims

HIM VIJAY Military Exercise :

  • HIM Vijay is the Indian Army’s biggest mountain combat exercise.
  • It is the first-ever military drill that was held in the north-eastern state of Arunachal Pradesh.
  • The exercise will include troop mobilisation, mountain assault and air assault.

15th Finance Commission :

  • Article 280 of the Constitution states that the President shall constitute a Finance Commission at the expiration of every fifth year or at such earlier time as the President considers necessary.
  • Union Cabinet has extended the term of 15th Finance Commission (15th FC) headed by N.K.Singh by one-year to October 30, 2020.
  • The term was originally set to end in October 2019.
  • It means the Commission will recommend its award to six fiscal years, instead of the usual five.
  • The 15th FC can give recommendations for six years through two reports (2020-21 to 2025-26) and 16th FC will consider devolution for 2025-26 to 2029-30.
  • Finance Commission is a quasi-judicial body and its recommendations are only of advisory nature and hence, not binding on the government.
  • They also deal with devolution of non-plan revenue resources.
  • According to the recommendation of 14th Finance Commission, the share of states in the net proceeds of the shareable Central taxes should be 42%.

 

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