3 Dec
2019

Nitish blames banks for woes of demonetisation

first_imgBihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday said the November 2016 decision to demonetise high value currency notes had failed to deliver its desired objectives.Addressing the 64th State-level Bankers Committee (SLBC) meeting in Patna, Mr Kumar, who had broken ranks with the opposition to support demonetisation, blamed banks for failing to curb the flow of banned high denomination notes back into the system.Mr. Kumar said large defaulters were able to obtain huge loans and escape from the country, while the poor had to face stringent recovery action over loans.“The biggest responsibility for the success of demonetisation drive rested with the bankers but everyone knows how a portion of unaccounted cash got accommodated in the banks…while the small borrowers face difficulty in getting loans, big people manage to get away with huge loans what we hear as banking scams,” the Chief Minister said.Despite the dramatic change in his position on the controversial monetary reform, Mr. Kumar a short while later posted a tweet congratulating Prime Minister Narendra Modi on completion of four years of his government.“Congratulations to honourable Prime Minister Narendra Modi on completion of four years of the government…I believe the government will rise to the expectations of the people,” he said.Funds crunchMr Kumar’s apparent u-turn provoked swift reactions across the political spectrum. Sources in the JD(U) told The Hindu that Mr. Kumar has been upset with the Centre for releasing only ₹1,711 crore for relief and rehabilitation after last year’s flood in north Bihar districts. The Bihar government had asked for ₹7,636 crore. Over 500 people died and more than a crore were affected in 19 districts of northeast Bihar.Leader of Opposition Tejaswi Yadav of the RJD said, “He (Nitish Kumar) had supported demonetisation but is now questioning it. He is always years behind in understanding the issues, difficulties and demands of common people.”“Don’t be surprised if he calls demonetisation the biggest scam of India,” Mr. Yadav said. Nitish Kumar would “betray” BJP also, he added.last_img read more

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24 Oct
2019

World Bank Impressed with Jamaica’s Macroeconomic Achievements

first_imgNewly appointed World Bank Vice President for Latin America and the Caribbean, Axel van Trostenburg, says Jamaica’s macroeconomic achievements, to date, have been “extremely impressive”.“I don’t know any country that has achieved, over a sustained period of time, the fiscal adjustments and reforms as Jamaica has done, and produced a most spectacular reduction of its debt level that reached almost 150 per cent, to fall, this year, below 100 per cent,” he said.“It’s certainly a world achievement… that probably would be number one, in terms of that success”, he said, adding that “I can only congratulate the country for this.“I think this is very good news. I can only [urge] you to continue this, because many countries could start learning from [this] miracle in Jamaica, that despite the many challenges, the country has made this enormous progress,” the World Bank Vice President added.He was speaking at a media briefing at the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) on Tuesday (April 30), to announce an additional US$140-million World Bank loan provision for Jamaica.The funds will bolster the Government’s efforts to strengthen Jamaica’s resilience risks associated with natural disasters, as well as support human capital development and enhance the social safety net for the society’s most vulnerable citizens.Mr. van Trostenburg, who was making his first visit to the island since his appointment, said Jamaica’s achievements are worthy of being highlighted.“I certainly mentioned to the Finance Minister (Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke) that we may need to actually highlight it a little bit more in the (Bank’s) membership, so that other countries can also learn what are the factors behind this,” he noted.Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, for his part, noted that Jamaica’s 55-year relationship with the World Bank remains strong, with over 140 projects facilitated to date.He said the provision of the US$140 million, resulting from discussions that Dr. Clarke had during the Bank’s recent series of spring meetings “comes as a result of good management of the economy”.“It shows that the World Bank and other International Development Partners are willing to place their loan portfolios with us because we are managing our economy the right way,” Mr. Holness added.For his part, Dr. Clarke said the World Bank has been an “excellent partner” of Jamaica over the past 55 years and “during the course of that time, has contributed to many signal achievements”.“We look forward to working with you for decades to come,” he added.last_img read more

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23 Oct
2019

Cargo Ship Priscilla Refloated from Pentland Skerries

first_imgzoomImage Courtesy: Thurso RNLI Dutch cargo ship MV Priscilla was successfully refloated in the evening hours of July 25, a week after it grounded on the Pentland Skerries.According to the HM Coastguard, the vessel was freed at around 9 pm local time. Following an initial assessment, the authorities agreed that the ship was in safe condition to be towed to Scapa Flow, Orkney Isles.MV Priscilla arrived at its destination in the morning hours on July 26. The ship will undergo a further assessment, including an underwater dive inspection, at the safe anchorage.Prior to the refloating attempt, salvors Multraship, Ardent and the ship’s operator Wagenborg removed 28 tonnes of marine gas oil (MGO) from the vessel and completed cargo discharge operations.last_img

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