Top headlines: FM sees near zero GDP growth in FY21, Pompeo backs India

The focus for the government is on public spending to boost economic activity, Sitharaman says.
US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo pushed for closer ties with India to confront China’s “threats” to security in the region. India’s economy is on the mend but GDP growth may be in negative zone or near zero this fiscal, said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. Here is more on what made news on Tuesday.

FM Sitharaman sees GDP growth in negative zone or near zero this fiscal

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday said there were visible signs of revival in the economy but the GDP growth may be in negative zone or near zero in the current fiscal. This is primarily because of a huge 23.9 per cent contraction in the economy in the first quarter of current fiscal (April-June), she added. Speaking at the India Energy Forum of CERAWeek, she said there was a "very firm lockdown" imposed beginning March 25 as the government put lives before livelihood. The lockdown also gave time to do preparatory work to deal with the pandemic. Read More...

Pompeo says 'US will stand with India', signs landmark defence pact

India and the US on Tuesday inked a landmark defence agreement that will allow sharing of high-end military technology, classified satellite data and critical information between the two countries. The signing of the long-negotiated Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) during the third edition of the 2+2 dialogue between the two strategic partners also signals further boosting of bilateral defence and military ties and it comes in the backdrop of India's tense border standoff with China in eastern Ladakh. Read More...

BP to Rosneft: Energy companies' CEOs tell their India plan to PM Modi

Global oil and gas majors lined up their plans when they interacted with Prime Minister Narendra Modi Monday night, appearing bullish on the country’s prospects as gas and renewable energy market Modi wooed industry majors for investments in India’s energy sector, seeking ideas from them to drive growth. The event—held on a secured virtual platform extended for almost two-and-a-half hours witnessed participation of around 40 chief executive officers from the oil and gas sector, with around 28 leaders presenting their views to the Prime Minister. Read More...

Enforce waiver of interest on interest scheme: RBI to lending institutions

The Reserve Bank on Tuesday asked all lending institutions, including non-banking financial companies, to implement the waiver of interest on interest for loans up to Rs 2 crore for the six months moratorium period beginning March 1, 2020. On October 23, the government had announced the scheme for grant of ex-gratia payment of difference between compound interest and simple interest for six months to borrowers in specified loan accounts. Read More...

Dairy farmers become roadblock for India's trade deals with US, EU

India’s effort to wrap up bilateral trade deals with major economies after pulling out of a China-backed regional pact has hit a major stumbling block -- its dairy industry. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration is hesitant to allow free access of dairy products from several countries, including the US, the EU and the UK, due to strong opposition from politically-influential dairy farmers, according to people familiar with the situation. Read More...



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