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January 20, 2018

19th January 2018 Events - Important Daily Current Affairs

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Dear Great Ambitionists, here are today's (19th January 2018) Important Current Affairs updates. Happy Reading :)

Daily Current Affairs of 19th January 2018

International Current Affairs
  • India today became the 43rd member of the Australia Group, which counters the export of material, equipment and technologies that could create chemical and biological weapons.
    • The informal and voluntary Australia Group works to counter the spread of materials, equipment and technologies that could contribute to developing or acquisition of chemical and biological weapons (CBW) by states or terrorist groups. 
    • Important Points to Note
    • In 2016, India had joined the Missile Technology Control Regime, aimed at restricting missile proliferation. 
    • Last year, India joined the Wassenaar Arrangement, which controls export of conventional weapons.
National Current Affairs
  • The Maharashtra government has announced a 1% reservation in government jobs and education for orphans in the state. 
    • The reservation will be provided under the general category and the state won't increase its caste reservation quota.
Science & Technology
  • Indian Air Force will showcase the indigenously developed weapon system integrated helicopter Rudra for the first time in the Republic Day parade this year. 
    • The flypast by the IAF during the parade will involve 38 aircraft, including 21 fighters, 12 helicopters, and 5 transporters. 
    • The formation of the flypast will also include a helicopter carrying the ASEAN flag.
Banking, Business & Economic Affairs
  • Facebook-owned messaging service WhatsApp is going to launch its digital payments feature in India next month.
    • WhatsApp is working with State Bank of India, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, and Axis Bank to integrate its Unified Payments Interface (UPI)- based payments platform. 
  • The GST Council has decided to put 29 handicraft items in the 0% tax slab and reduce rates on 53 services. 
    • These items including sugar boiled confectionery, drinking water packed in 20-litre bottles and mehendi cones. 
    • GST on theme park tickets, second-hand medium and large cars and SUVs has been reduced from 28% to 18%. 
    • The tax on finished diamonds and precious stones has been slashed from 3% to 0.25%.
  • Saudi Arabia's King Salman has ordered deposit of $2 billion into Yemen's central bank to support the country's national currency rial.
    • This comes a day after the Yemeni Prime Minister Ahmed bin Daghr publicly appealed for funds to save the local currency.
  • Thomson Reuters Corp today published its debut "Top 100 Global Technology Leaders" list with Microsoft Corp in the no. 1 spot, followed by chipmaker Intel Corp and network gear maker Cisco Systems Inc.
  • The Haryana government has decided to form a non-banking financial company (NBFC) titled Haryana State Financial Services Limited (HSFSL)
    • HSFSL will act as an in-house treasury manager for efficient management of surplus funds of State public enterprises and autonomous bodies.
    • It will enable quick and hassle-free lending and create financial discipline among the State government entities.
  • Paytm Payments Bank Savings Account holders can now order physical debit cards from the Paytm app. 
    • Earlier the bank provided only a Digital Rupay card which was linked to a user's Paytm Payments Bank savings account.
Awards & Honors
  • PM Narendra Modi will felicitate 7 Girls and 11 Boys with the National Bravery Awards on January 24.
    • The children, who hail from 13 states, will also participate in the Republic Day parade. 
New Appointments
  • The government today appointed senior IAS officer S Selvakumar as the Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Ltd (SPMCIL).
    • He will replace Anurag Agarwal who was appointed to the post on September 27, 2017.
    • Note : The state-owned SPMCIL produces bank notes, coins, postage stamps, non-judicial stamps and other official documents.
  • Romania's ruling party has nominated Viorica Dancila as the country's new Prime Minister after Mihai Tudose resigned from the post following a power struggle within the party. 
    • Note : Dancila will become Romania's first female PM and the third premier to assume the office in seven months. 
  • Facebook has appointed outgoing American Express CEO Kenneth Chenault to its board.
    • With this he will be the first African-American to be on the board.
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