GST Council waives tax on black fungus drug; rates reduced for several Covid essentials: Highlights
The GST Council on Saturday waived tax rates on black fungus drug Amphotericin and reduced rates on several other Covid-related essential items like drugs, ventilators, testing kits and others. However, it has decided to continue with 5 per cent GST rate for Covid vaccines.
'Suspend new rules for governing online content'
Digital advocacy group Access Now and 13 other organisations, including Reporters Without Borders, Human Rights Watch, and Article 19 have urged the union government to suspend the implementation of its new rules for governing content and communications online, calling them “unconstitutional.”
IDBI customers to get only 20 free cheque leaves per year
IDBI Bank customers will have to pay Rs 5 per cheque leaf beyond 20 free leaves per year, under the revised charges from next month.Currently, customers can access as many as 60 cheque leaves without any charges in a year in the first year of account opening and 50 leaves in all the subsequent years. Beyond these, one has to pay Rs 5 per leaf.
Fuel price rise: After petrol, diesel crosses Rs 100-mark in Sri Ganganagar
With fuel prices rising for the 23rd time since May 4, petrol and diesel rates across many states have risen to historic highs. After petrol, diesel prices crossed Rs 100-mark in a city in Rajasthan as oil marketing companies (OMCs) raised fuel prices yet gain on Saturday.
Microsoft will end support for Windows 10 in 2025
Technology|World|Business|: Washington: With a new version of Windows, potentially called Windows 11, scheduled to launch by the end of this month, Microsoft has announced that support for Windows 10 will end on 14 October 2025. This includes the Windows 10 Home Pro and the Pro versions for Education and Workstations. The tech giant recently updated its official Windows 10 documentation to include this information. On Microsoft's Windows 10 Home and Pro Lifecycle Policy page, the company stated that it will "continue to support at least one Windows 10 Semi-Annual Channel until October 14, 2025." Underneath, it then lists the retirement date of 'Windows 10 Home and Pro' as 14 October 2025. This means that the tech giant will not release any more updates and security fixes after that date. However, the company's recent teaser confirmed that it will launch Windows 11 by the end of this month. It has listed a new event on its website, which will take place on June 24. As per The Verge, at the event, the company will highlight everything that is coming 'next for Windows.' The event will kick off at 8:30 pm IST. Microsoft confirmed this news via its official Twitter handle. Windows 11 is expected to get a major UI overhaul. As per The Verge, Microsoft has been working on something codenamed 'Sun Valley', which the company has referred to as a "sweeping visual rejuvenation of Windows." There will be many other changes, including some significant Windows Store ones. Microsoft has also been working on a new app store for Windows in recent months, and rumours have suggested Microsoft will open its store up to all apps and rival payment platforms.
'NGOs can apply for opening FCRA a/c from any SBI branch'
The State Bank of India (SBI) has informed the home ministry that it sent three mails between December 2020 and March 2021 to almost 23,000 NGOs and associations, clarifying that their functionaries need not visit the national Capital to open the mandatory account at its New Delhi main branch (NDMB) to receive foreign funds, and could instead approach any SBI branch.
Dubai’s non-oil external trade grows 10% to Dh354 billion in Q1 2021
Business|: Dubai: Dubai’s economy has proved its resilience and ability to recover quickly from the global repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic by achieving high levels of external non-oil trade growth in Q1 2021. Dubai’s foreign trade in the first quarter 2021 touched Dh354.4 billion growing 10 per cent from Dh323 billion in the corresponding period in 2020, and 5 per cent compared to Q1 2019. This reflects a rapid return to recovery and growth in the external trade sector and an ability to adapt to drastic changes in the international trade environment. Exports grew 25 per cent to Dh50.5 billion, representing a volume of 5 million tonnes, a rise of 20 per cent, and imports accounted for D204.8 billion, growing 9 per cent. The value of re-exports reached Dh99 billion, growing 5.5 per cent. “This remarkable performance reflects our external trade sector’s impressive resilience and its ability to rebound and grow in the face of major international crises. Inspired by the vision and directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, we have always turned challenges into opportunities. We have been able to achieve this by virtue of our good governance, advanced infrastructure, strategic location, our status as a regional and global hub for trade, and the generous stimulus packages that the government has launched in support of trade and businesses," said Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai. This remarkable growth will get Dubai closer to the ambitious target of its five-year strategy to raise the value of external trade to Dh2 trillion and consolidate its position as a bridge connecting regional and international markets by constantly enhancing its infrastructure and logistics services. "Furthermore, by hosting EXPO2020, ‘the world’s greatest show’, Dubai will make a significant contribution to the recovery of the global economy and help it move towards prosperity again,” said Sheikh Hamdan. China maintained its position as Dubai’s largest trading partner in Q1, 2021 with Dh44 billion worth of trade, representing a growth of 30 per cent. India came in second with Dh35 billion, growing 17 per cent, followed by the USA in third place with Dh15.4 billion. Saudi Arabia continued to be Dubai’s largest Gulf and Arab trade partner and its fourth largest global trade partner with AED14.7 billion worth of trade, growing 20 per cent, followed by Turkey in fifth place with Dh12 billion, representing a staggering growth of 72 per cent. Direct trade in Q1 2021 totaled Dh217 billion growing 15 per cent compared to Q1 2020, while trade through free zones reached Dh135 billion, growing 2 per cent. Customs warehouse trade weighed in at Dh2.3 billion, growing 23 per cent. Airborne trade accounted for Dh179 billion, growing 15 per cent. Sea trade reached Dh120 billion, growing 3 per cent, while land trade touched Dh55.3 billion, growing 7 per cent. Gold topped the list of commodities in Dubai's Q1 external trade at Dh63 billion, growing 27 per cent, followed by telecoms at Dh50 billion, growing 32 per cent. Diamonds registered a record growth of 61 per cent and came third in the list with Dh29 billion, followed by jewelry with Dh17 billion, and vehicle trade, which grew 9 per cent to reach Dh14billion. “Dubai recovered quickly from the repercussions of the current global crisis and has resiliently grown its trade, spurred by its strong investments and advanced technological capabilities, which enabled it to continue its global trading activities during what has been a testing time. The impressive success of the vaccination campaign in the UAE has created high levels of global confidence in the country and helped Dubai add to its profile as the city with the world’s most favourable business environment," said Sultan bin Sulayem, DP World Group Chairman & CEO and Chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation.
UAE Maritime Week to return with an in-person event during EXPO 2020
Business|: UAE Maritime Week to return with an in-person event during EXPO 2020 The event will support the growth during the Post-Covid period Dubai: The UAE Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure has revealed that the UAE Maritime Week, with its flagship event, Seatrade Maritime Middle East, will be held at Dubai Exhibition Centre at Expo 2020 Dubai, from December 12 - 16 2021. The UAE Maritime Week, which is organised by Seatrade Maritime, part of Informa Markets, aims to connect maritime markets in the Middle East by bringing together ship owners, industry suppliers and key decision-makers from the region on a common platform to discuss and plan about the future of the maritime industry over a course of five days. The event includes Seatrade Maritime Middle East; Seatrade Maritime Awards Middle East, Indian Subcontinent & Africa; Maritime Leaders Forum and Experience Maritime. A day will be dedicated to terminal operators and associated industries as part of the global TOC brand, also a part of Informa Markets. "The UAE has always been at the forefront of bolstering the maritime industry and ensuring the continued progress of the sector with the help of initiatives that guarantee resilience and success of organizations working under its umbrella,” said Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure. “Our ports and logistics operators have showcased grit and determination amid the crisis. In 2020, despite an unstable market, DP World recorded revenue growth of 11 per cent. This year in Q1, they recorded a gross container volume increase of 10.2 per cent year-on-year. Khalifa Port, Abu Dhabi Ports’ flagship deep-water facility achieved significant progress in the now operational South Quay and the Khalifa Port Logistics (KPL) development.” Over the years, the UAE Maritime Week has established itself as an epicentre for a variety of maritime activities, and a common platform for uniting the maritime industry. Attendees include prestigious influential names from key organisations like Abu Dhabi Ports, ADNOC, Al Masaood, Albawardy Damen, Allianz Marine, Bahri, and DP World. “We are certain that as businesses are gradually recovering and getting back to normal, the 2021 edition will help the industry continue its upward progression. We are grateful to the wise leadership of the UAE for their constant support for the event and their efforts to boost the development of the maritime sector,” said Chris Hayman, Chairman, Seatrade. The 2021 edition will focus on seafarer safety, the future of the supply chain, digitalization and data, regulation updates, and decarbonization and sustainable shipping. Attendees will also get the opportunity to learn from powerful influencers and thought-leaders from the industry.
When international travel resumes, Canada's borders and airports will be very different
News/Politics: Just as the 9/11 attacks did 20 years ago, the COVID-19 pandemic will transform the way people travel internationally — with hundreds of millions of dollars in new government spending planned for modernizing border security and updating public health measures at airports.
Is a summer hiring spree coming as COVID restrictions ease? Depends on who you ask
News/Business: As pandemic restrictions ease, businesses hope customers will flood back, spurring a surge in summer hiring. But while there’s optimism better days are ahead, not everyone is certain a wave of employment is about to wash over the economy.
Central Bank of UAE issues guidances for financial institutions on anti-money laundering and combatting financing of terrorism
Banking|: Abu Dhabi: The Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) issued two new guidances on anti-money laundering and combatting the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) for its licensed financial institutions (LFIs) on suspicious transaction reporting and legal persons/arrangements. The guidances will assist the understanding and mitigation of risks as well as the effective performance by the LFIs of their AML/CFT statutory obligations. The new guidances build on Federal Decree-Law No. (20) of 2018 on AML/CFT and the Cabinet Decision No. (10) of 2019 and take account of the standards and guidance issued by the Financial Action Task Force. LFIs must report any behavior that they reasonably suspect may be linked to money laundering, the financing of terrorism, or a criminal offence by submitting suspicious activity reports directly to the UAE’s Financial Intelligence Unit using the “goAML” portal. They should file suspicious activity reports within a maximum of 35 days from detection. LFIs providing services to legal persons/arrangements should assess the relevant money laundering and terrorist financing risks and develop an effective AML/CFT programme. These can include companies, foundations, associations, trusts or other similar arrangements. “The UAE continues its journey in combating money laundering and the financing of terrorism and illegal organisations. In line with the CBUAE’s mandate of supervision and oversight to ensure compliance with provisions of AML/CFT legislation, the issuance of these guidances is aimed at strengthening our efforts to enhance the LFIs’ effectiveness in implementing crime-combatting measures,” said Khaled Mohamed Balama, Governor of the Central Bank of the UAE. Jointly with the Financial Intelligence Unit, the CBUAE conducts outreach and awareness-raising efforts on the reporting of suspicious transactions for supervised sectors.
April factory growth soars 134% on low base effect
Industrial output growth shot up to 134.4% in April, largely due to the low base of last year, as economists cautioned against reading too much into the data for the month and pointed to the slowdown in activity as evident from more recent numbers.
Emirates suspends inbound flights from Zambia and Uganda
Aviation|: Dubai: Emirates airline has suspended passenger flights from Zambia and Uganda to Dubai until further notice, in response to a UAE government directive. The ban came into effect at 2359 hours on June 11, 2021. Emirates flights from Dubai to Lusaka, continuing on to Harare and flights from Dubai to Entebbe will continue to operate as normal. Passengers who have connected through Zambia and Uganda in the last 14 days will not be accepted to travel from any other point to the UAE. UAE nationals and their first degree relatives, holders of golden visas and members of diplomatic missions accredited by the UAE and the two countries who comply with updated COVID 19 protocols, as well as delegations and businesspeople who have received prior approvals, will be exempt for travel. Ticket cancelation Passengers need not call Emirates if they want to keep their ticket for a future flight. Travelers should contact their booking office whenever they are ready to travel. For rebooking, ticket-holders should contact their travel agent or booking office. "Emirates regrets any inconvenience caused," said the airline in a statement.