finance
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Finance News: Sure Buy Mall Guide

  1. The Group of Ministers under Sushil Modi, on Sunday, approved the levy of 1 percent calamity cess by Kerala in relation to the recent flood, for a two year time period. The GST law has provisions for the levy of special taxes in the event of any natural calamity or disaster for a specified time period in order to raise additional resources. The calamity cess by the State of Kerala will be used to fund further relief and rehabilitation measures, and the funding amount is to be fixed upon by the State and the Centre. Modi has further pointed out that states wishing to levy the ‘calamity cess’ should approach the GST council for approval. The GoM under Modi has also approved borrowing beyond the prescribed limit for calamity affected states. Separately, the exemption limits for MSMEs are also being debated by ministerial panels, and conclusions regarding the increase of exemption limits for these MSMEs will be decided in the GST Council meeting on 10 January.

 

  1. Finance minister, Arun Jaitley, in a Facebook post titled ‘Benefits of the Adhaar – Where it Stands Today,’ has said that savings made from Adhaar can sufficiently fund three public welfare schemes of the same scale as Ayushman Bharat. This ‘game changer‘ as Jaitley calls it, has saved over Rs 90,000 crore until March 2018, by eradicating duplicate and non-existent beneficiaries. It has also made for the elimination of middlemen which ensures that all subsidiary benefits go directly to bank accounts. This unique technology, found in India alone, has helped use the money saved, which in total comes up to Rs 1,69,868 crore, for the needs of the poor. The World Bank’s Digital Dividend Report has estimated that this scheme can help India save over Rs 77,000 crore annually. The Supreme Court has also backed the concept of unique identity and rejected the notion of a violation of the right to privacy.

 

  1. The International Monetary Fund is boasting the first woman to become their chief economist – Gita Gopinath. Mysore-born Gopinath, 47, is the John Zwaanstra professor of International Studies and Economics at Harvard University, has been described by IMF MD, Christine Lagarde, as being one of the world’s best economists backed by proven academic, leadership and experiential track records. Gopinath is set to delve into understanding the role of dominant currencies in international trade, as well as investigating the perceived retreat from globalization which she considers one of the top challenges the IMF faces. She expresses her concern regarding US domination in world markets and interest rates and plans on finding viable solutions to the same.