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Yasin Latiwala
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Courier Service – Door to Door Courier, International Courier, Air Freight, Student Shipping, Movers & Packers
Courier Service – Door to Door Courier, International Courier, Air Freight, Student Shipping, Movers & Packers

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Khurshid discusses India-Pakistan bilateral ties with Aziz

New Delhi : Minister for External Affairs Salman Khurshid discussed bilateral ties with the advisor to Pakistan's prime minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz on the sidelines of the ASEAN Regional Forum meeting in Brunei, said.

According to the statement, this was the first high-level bilateral contact between the two countries after the new Government in Pakistan headed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif took office last month. Khurshid conveyed greetings from Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and expressed the Indian Government's desire to engage with Pakistan on all issues and work on improving bilateral relations, said the statement.

Both ministers agreed that the India-Pakistan Joint Business Council meeting, which concluded in Islamabad June 29, was another important mechanism that would help in taking the process forward.
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Rupee movement will determine RBI stance on rate cut, says Rangarajan.

NEW DELHI :  The Reserve Bank of India will have greater room to cut policy rates on July 31 if the pressure on the rupee were to ease, a top policymaker has said.

“The pressure on rupee had prevented RBI in the earlier occasion to go in that direction (policy rate easing) and it took a pause. And therefore, if the pressure on the rupee eases, then it will give greater room for RBI,” C. Rangarajan, Chairman of the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council said. Rangarajan said the RBI was also largely influenced by external sector considerations at its recent mid-quarter policy review meeting on June 17.

Although the Wholesale Price Index was showing a downward trend and the non-food manufacturing inflation rate was below 3 per cent, the central bank decided to take a pause.

The rupee hit an all-time low of over 60 against the dollar on June 26 amid large outflows due to debt sale by foreign institutional investors. However,  extending its rebound from a record low. The Government’s decision to raise natural gas prices also boosted investors’ confidence in Indian assets.

Stocks and bonds surged the most in at least a year. “I think the rupee went down but then it also recovered very much in the last two days. I think capital flows will come back and I think the rupee will get further strengthened,” Rangarajan said.

The RBI had earlier this month kept the repo rate and cash reserve ratio unchanged at 7.25 per cent and 4 per cent, respectively.
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PM sets ambitious infrastructure targets

Rs 1.5 lakh cr investment in PPP projects in 6 months.

New Delhi: In a bid to ramp up investor sentiment, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh set an investment target of Rs 1.15 lakh crore in PPP (public private partnership) projects across infrastructure sectors in rail, port and power in the next six months.

New Delhi: In a bid to ramp up investor sentiment, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh set an investment target of Rs 1.15 lakh crore in PPP (public private partnership) projects across infrastructure sectors in rail, port and power in the next six months.

The proposals include Mumbai elevated rail corridor (Rs 30,000 crore), two international airports in Bhubneshwar and Imphal (Rs 20,000 crore) and power and Transmission projects (Rs 40,000 crore).

The decisions were taken at a meeting Prime Minister held in New Delhi to finalise infrastructure projects for 2013-14 which was attended by Finance Minister

P Chidambaram, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia and ministers of power, coal, railways, roads, shipping and civil aviation.

The meeting decided that the proposal for creating a rail tariff authority will be accelerated and brought before the cabinet soon. The Prime Minister highlighted the need for ramping up investment in infrastructure to revive investor sentiment.

“For this purpose, a target of rolling out PPP projects of at least Rs 1 lakh crore in the next six months was set. A steering group is being formed to monitor the award and implementation of projects on priority basis,” a PMO release said.

The Prime Minister emphasised that a lot of work was needed to be done to improve infrastructure sector and there should be no slackening of the pace of work, the release said.

Ahluwaila also made a presentation about the performance of the six infrastructure ministries and the targets for 2013-14. The Government, the release said, decided to form a steering group to monitor the award and implementation of projects.

Besides airports and Mumbai’s elevated rail corridor projects, the group will also monitor two Locomotive projects (Rs 5,000 crore), accelerating E-DFC (Eastern-Dedicated Freight Corridor) (Rs 10,000 crore) and port projects (Rs 10,000 crore).

In the civil aviation sector, apart from two new international airports, 50 new low cost small airports will be taken up by Airports Authority of India.

Besides, a target for awarding eight greenfield airports was set for this year in PPP mode at Navi Mumbai, Juhu (Mumbai), Goa, Kannur, Pune (Rajguru Nagar Chakan), Sriperumbudur, Bellary and Raigarh.

The statement said airport operations and maintenance through PPP contracts will be introduced in AAI airports and the airports considered for these are Chennai, Kolkata, Lucknow, Guwahati, Jaipur and Ahmedabad. Besides new low cost airports would be set up at 51 places in Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Bihar, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Maharashtra.

As far as ports were concerned, it stated that both the new ports on PPP mode one at Sagar (West Bengal) and the other Durgarajapatnam (Andhra Pradesh) approved by cabinet will be awarded.
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India-Israel FTA to boost trade: Israeli envoy.

New Delhi : India and Israel can invent, produce and market products together once they sign Free Trade Agreement (FTA), said Israeli Ambassador to India Alon Ushpiz.

Though the two countries are currently holding negotiations on FTA in New Delhi, he is not expecting a breakthrough in couple of days. He hopes the two sides would be able to sign the agreement by the end of this year.

The envoy said the two sides were focusing on the list of items and admitted that the negotiations were difficult and complicated. "I can't predict outcome of negotiations. I believe it is the most important platform to take forward what we are doing together," he said.

The bilateral trade between India and Israel crossed $5 billion during 2011. The ambassador pointed out that this did not include services. Though the trade decreased during 2012 because of economic challenges in both the countries, he believes the trend is positive.
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